More Adventures with Ireland’s Bord na Mona—September 2013.


Shannonbridge and More!

Last week, Mark Healy and I made a foray into Irish bog lands searching for narrow gauge peat trains operated by Bord na Móna  (Peat Board). We’d been watching the weather closely and tried to time our visit for a bright clear day.

We got it wrong. Despite a rosy sunrise in Dublin and generally good forecast, we faced fog, cloudy and just general overcast in County Offaly.

After more than a half dozen visits to this rarely photographed industrial railway, I thought I was beginning to have an understanding of their operations.

I got that wrong too! While, we’d photographed a dozen trains by the end of the day, actual operations were quite different than what I expected.

Bord na Mona
Trailing view of Bord na Móna’s Shannonbridge empty ash train returning to Shannonbridge, County Offaly, Ireland. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Bord na Mona
Laden peat train near Shannonbridge, September 2013. Exposed with a Lumix LX3.
Laden trains approach Shannonbridge. Canon EOS 7D photo with f2.8 200mm lens.
Laden trains approach Shannonbridge. Canon EOS 7D photo with f2.8 200mm lens.

Initially we worked the lines radiating out from Shannonbridge. Our first train was the ever-elusive ash train. That was a bonus for us. After about five hours, having photographed several loaded and empty trains, we decided to head east toward Edenderry, which is the focus of another of Bord na Móna’s networks.

On the way we stumbled upon an obscure Bord na Móna operation. Driving east on highway R357 east of Cloghan, Mark noticed a level crossing. “Hey! There’s a pair of trains.” I mistook these for trains heading to Shannonbridge

My error was corrected when we chatted to one of the drivers. Turns out these were empty trains heading out loading to bring peat to the Derrinlough briquette factory. Just dumb luck to catch this operation.

Level crossing gate.
Closing the level crossing gates on Ireland’s R357 east of Cloghan, County Offaly. Canon EOS 7D 7D photo with f2.8 200mm lens.
Rare photo of briquette train.
A Derrinlough-based Bord na Móna train near Cloghan, County Offaly. Canon EOS 7D 7D photo with f2.8 200mm lens.
Bord na Mona.
A Derrinlough-based Bord na Móna train crosses highway R357 near Cloghan, County Offaly. Lumix LX3 photo.
Bord na Mona
Trailing view of Derrinlough-based Bord na Móna trains near Cloghan, County Offaly. Canon EOS 7D 7D photo with f2.8 200mm lens.


We finished the day inspecting operations near Mt Lucas and Edenderry. Pity about the lack of sun.

I’ve dealt with Bord na Móna several times in previous posts.

Gallery 8: Irish Bog Railways—Part 1Irish Bog Railways—Part 2 February 16, 2013Irish Bog Railways—Part 3, March 2, 2013Irish Bog Railways—Part 4, August, 2013; and Bord na Mona’s Ash Train.

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Deutsche Bahn Freight near Dordrecht Zuid, Netherlands, September 2013


Red Electric in Soft Sun Light.

Thunderstorms had blown through earlier in the afternoon. Then the sun beamed. All the while Netherlandse Spoorwagen’s double-track north-south mainline south of Dordrecht was saturated with an unceasing parade of trains. (See my earlier post: Netherlandse Spoorwagen Koploper near Dordrecht Zuid, Septemeber 2013).


NS keeps trains flowing one after another, and doesn’t seem to have any qualms about running freight tightly between passenger trains. I found that about every half hour a freight would be slotted in.

rail freight

I made this photograph with my Canon EOS 7D with f2.8 200mm lens, set at ISO 400 f 4.5 at 1/1000th of a second. In post-processing, I made minor adjustments to contrast and saturation to match how I perceived the light at the moment of exposure.

This was one of the last exposures I made before sundown. A former Netherlandse Spoorwagen electric leads a southward Deutsche Bahn freight. While I’d seen several of these classic electrics on the move, this was the only one I caught in nice light hauling freight.


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Thalys High Speed Train, The Netherlands, September 2013


Presenting a Modern Railway Vision.

Thalys high-speed train.
Thalys crosses Hollands Diep south of Dordrecht, The Netherlands in September 2013. Exposed using a Canon EOS 7D fitted with f2.8 200mm lens; ISO 800 f4 1/250 second.

I exposed this image of a Thalys at speed crossing a arched bridge over Hollands Diep minutes before the fading orange ball of the sun melted into North Sea coastal fog.

Thalys is an international high-speed train branding applied to services connecting Amsterdam-Brussels-Paris, and Köln-Brussels-Paris. Technologically speaking the train is a French-built TGV, but specially painted and decorated for Thalys services.

This was an evening run from Amsterdam to Paris. Hollands Diep is the coastal estuary fed by Rhein and Meuse Rivers. This bridge features a pronounced sweep up and over the water. Beyond it is an older (and busier) truss that has two main tracks for ordinary rail services (freight and passenger).

I panned this train with my Canon EOS 7D fitted with f2.8 200mm fixed telephoto. The light was fading rapidly, so I set the ISO to 800, adjusted the white balance manually and pre-focused in anticipation of the fast moving train. My exposure was f4 at 1/250 of a second.

Earlier in the evening I’d seen a Thalys fly across the bridge and I recognized that the structure of the bridge mimicked the paint scheme on the train, so I released the shutter to allow for an arching visual flow between train and bridge. This is accentuated by the low light.



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Netherlandse Spoorwagen Koploper near Dordrecht Zuid, September 2013

A Distinctively Dutch Train.

A classic Netherlandse Spoorwagen (Dutch Railways) ‘Koploper’ approaches a pedestrian/cycle crossing at Dordrecht Zuid in September 2013. Appearently, the name loosely translates to ‘Head Walker’, or so I’m told. Does anyone know more about the name?

Earlier this month (September 2013), I traveled with an Irish railway photographer to the Netherlands. We spent a few sunny hours at a pedestrian/bicycle crossing near Dordrecht Zuid on a busy north-south line.

This was one of the most intensely used double-track mainlines that I’ve witnessed in any country. For two hours we photographed a constant parade of local and long distant passenger trains plus a great variety of freight. Trains passed the crossing every couple of minutes.

Bicycles at a Dutch level crossing.
Bicycles are a Dutch national transport obsession. These cyclists had waited patiently for the barriers to lift before crossing the line near Dordrecht Zuid.

For me one of the most interesting trains to photograph are the Netherlandse Spoorwagen (translated as ‘Dutch Railways) ‘Koploper’ style electric multiple unit.

These are distinctively Dutch. As European railways are rapidly moving toward standard commercial train models, it’s nice to still see nationally characteristic equipment on the mainline.

I exposed these photos with my Lumix LX-3.

A classic Netherlandse Spoorwagen (Dutch Railways) ‘Koploper’.
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Tioga Central, October 7, 2007.

Alcos on the old Fallbrook Route. 

 In October 2007, I was working on my Railroad’s of Pennsylvania book, when Pat Yough and I made a very productive chase of Tioga Central’s excursion train, which operated, from Wellsboro Junction, Pennsylvania compass north along the old New York Central Fallbrook route (including over a Penn-Central-era line relocation).

Alco RS-1
An RS-1 wearing a Lehigh Valley-like livery leads a Tioga Central excursion north of Wellsboro Junction on October 7, 2007. I’d just bought a second-hand 24mm Canon lens from Thom Kinard, and this was a good opportunity to try it out on my Canon EOS 3 loaded with Fujichrome.

Back in the mid-1980s, I failed to take the opportunity to chase an empty Conrail coal train down the line south of Gang Mills Yard (near Corning, New York). At the time the line still went all the way to Newberry Junction, near Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

Conrail operated ENSY/SYEN (Enola-Syracuse) manifest trains on this route three days a week, plus unit coal trains.

I’d been standing at the bridge (now gone) at the east end of Conrail’s Gang Mills Yard. There were two trains coming. A westward double stack on the former Erie route, and a southward unit coal train heading down the Fallbrook. I opted to follow the stack train because I didn’t have a good map of Pennsylvania.

Six months later Conrail abandoned the Fallbrook as a through route, and lifted the line south of Wellsboro through the super-scenic Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania.

While, I’ve since chased Wellsboro & Corning freights and the Tioga Central excursion, I’ve always regretted my poor decision that day. A map, a map, my kingdom for a map!


An RS-1 wearing a Lehigh Valley-inspired livery leads a Tioga Central excursion north of Wellsboro Junction on October 7, 2007. I’d just bought a second-hand 24mm Canon lens from Thom Kinard, and this was a good opportunity to try it out on Canon EOS 3 loaded with Fujichrome.

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Locomotive Geometry: Susquehanna Alco RS-1


Binghamton, New York, December 1986.

It was a cold and snowy day when I drove from Rochester to Binghamton, New York in December 1986. I photographed several trains along the former Erie Southern Tier route.

In the afternoon, I made this study of a New York, Susquehanna & Western Alco RS-1 at the railroad’s Binghamton yard.

Alco RS-1 diesel
Exposed on 120 size Kodachrome 64 roll film with a Rollei Model T featuring an f3.5 75mm Zeiss Tessar lens.

I was using my dad’s Rollei Model T loaded with 120 Kodachrome 64. I had the camera fitted with a ‘Super Slide’ insert that gave me 16 rectangular frames per roll, roughly in the 645 format. Pop had bought the camera in Germany back in 1960.

I think its neat that my father had photographed Susquehanna’s RS-1s in passenger service more than 25 years earlier with the same camera. Since I was only 20 then, it seemed to me that the locomotives (and the Rollei) had been around since the dawn of time!

This batch of Kodak 120 Kodachrome had a tendency to color shift red, so after scanning I made some corrections in post processing. Other than that the image is extremely sharp. Scanned at 4800 dpi as TIF file this is nearly 250 MB. That’s an enormous amount of information.

I’ve always liked locomotive details. Some of my earliest efforts focused on engine shapes.



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Pilgrimage to the Quebec Cartier Railway, July 1997.

Getting there was Half the Adventure.

By 1997, the Quebec Cartier Railway was among the last places in North America where sets of six-motor Alco-designed diesels worked in heavy daily freight service.

Ore train in Quebec.
Quebec Cartier Railway C-636 number 78 leads a southward ore train in July 1997. This locomotive was one of several Alco demonstrators acquired by the Cartier. Exposed on Kodachrome 25 with a Nikon N90S and f2.8-80-200mm zoom lens.

This is a remote and isolated line in northern Quebec that extends north from Port Cartier on the north shore of the Gulf of St. Lawrence into the wilderness of the Canadian Shield.

George Pitarys and Bill Linley organized a pilgrimage to photograph this remote operation. Getting there from Massachusetts was half the adventure. The two hour drive to George’s place was the first leg. We rented Ford Explorer at the Manchester, New Hampshire airport, then drove north for about 16 hours.

Along the way we collected Bill and fellow photographer Ian at the ferry terminal at Baie-Comeau (they were coming from Nova Scotia.) We stayed at Port Cartier overnight. Our first full day wasn’t blessed with the finest weather, so we focused on some railway activities nearer to Port Cartier, including a tour of the shops of the Quebec, North Shore & Labrador.

After that the skies cleared. To reach the scenic areas of the Quebec Cartier Railway requires a long drive on dirt roads into forest largely populated by swarms of man-eating black flies, thirsty mosquitoes and the occasional moose, but very little else.

Yet, our efforts paid off. We spent several very productive days photographing loaded and empty iron ore trains in the rugged scenery of northern Quebec. This view was made on our second morning.

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Pioneer Valley Railroad at Westfield, Massachusetts, October 1984.

Alco S-2 106.

Alco switcher
Among Pioneer Valley’s early locomotives was Alco S-2 switcher number 106 which came to the line from sister Pinsly road Frankfort & Cincinnati. On October 12, 1984 it stands at Westfield, Massachusetts engine house ready for its trip to Holyoke and back.

I exposed this view of Pioneer Valley Railroad’s Alco S-2 switcher with my old Leica 3A on black & white film on October 12, 1984. On the same day, I’d arranged with the railroad to ride this locomotive to Holyoke and back.

It was a memorable trip. In Holyoke we worked the Graham branch that followed the banks of old canals. Several times we had to stop to open and close gates across the line.

I featured this photo in my recent book North American Locomotives that features railroad by railroad locomotive profiles of many different lines. In addition to the Class 1 carriers, I also profiled a variety of smaller lines, many of which are my personal favorites.


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Quiet Day at Palmer Yard, 1979.

Kid with a Camera.

Central Vermont Alco RS-11
Looking south at Central Vermont’s Palmer, Massachusetts Yard in spring 1979. The Rocket was loaded circus style using a ramp in the yard. RS-11s were typically assigned to this train.

In spring 1979, my dad and I visited Central Vermont’s Palmer, Massachusetts yard. At the time Palmer activity tended to be nocturnal. A lone RS-11 for The Rocket (Palmer-St Albans, Vermont piggyback) was the only locomotive in town.

I made a few exposures on Kodachrome 64 with my Leica 3A. At the time I was in 7th grade at Monson Junior-Senior High School. Admittedly my photographic skills were rudimentary. The photos are passable, but a decent record of the scene.

I wish I’d made more photos of CV’s piggyback trains. By the time I understood what it was about, it had stopped running. I have a few images of The Rocket on the road, but not very many.

Alco RS-11

Detail view of CV RS-11 3611 at Palmer in spring 1979. RS-11s were among my favorite diesels and I’d see them regularly at Palmer.




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Delaware Lackawanna Freight Near Scranton, Pennsylvania, October 14, 1997

Lucky Photograph on the old Lackawanna Mainline.

Mike Gardner and I were poking around Scranton on October 14, 1997. Although the foliage was nearing its autumnal peak, the sky was dull, so we were mostly exploring locations.

Alco diesel
A Delaware-Lackawanna freight led by an Alco C-425 diesel passes below a former Erie Railroad bridge near Scranton, Pennsylvania on October 14, 1997.

We drove into this spot along the old Lackawanna triple-track mainline used by Steamtown excursions and Delaware Lackawanna freights. I was curious about the abandoned former Erie line that crosses in the distance on a truss.

Neither of us expected to see a train, but to our surprise this Delaware Lackawanna local returning from Moscow came down grade. Even with 100 speed Fujichrome Provia 100F my exposure was difficult. I think this image was made at f4.0 at 1/60th of second with my Nikon F3T and 80-200mm zoom.

Interestingly, a decade later I made a project of photographing Delaware-Lackawanna operations while working on my book Railroads of Pennsylvania published by Voyageur Press. Between 2005 and 2007, I traveled about a half dozen times to Scranton and had several very productive chases of trains PT97/PT98 on this route.

Here’s an excerpt from  Railroads of Pennsylvania:

Visitors to Steamtown will be pleased to see the occasional passing of freight trains on the old Lackawanna mainline. These are not for demonstration but rather are revenue-earning for profit freight trains operated by Genesee Valley Transportation’s Delaware Lackawanna railroad. Since 1993, Delaware Lackawanna has provided regular freight service in Scranton. Today, the railroad operates on three historic routes. The most significant is eastward on the old Delaware, Lackawanna & Western mainline. Here D-L freights share the line with Steamtown excursions, much in the way the historic DL&W’s coal trains shared tracks with its famous Phoebe Snow. Three days a week D-L freights make a round trip eastward over the Poconos, through the Delaware Water Gap to a connection with Norfolk Southern at Slateford Junction near Portland, Pennsylvania.




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Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia, Cape Jack, July 24, 1997


A Fleeting Glimpse of a Maritime Alco Diesel Oasis.

Railway train with water
On July 24, 1997, a Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia freight rolls west at Cape Jack along the Gulf of the St. Lawrence.

I featured this image of westward Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia (say it five times fast) freight in my big book Locomotive, published by MBI in 2001. The concept of the book was very large photo reproduction of classic locomotives. There were three sections; steam, diesel and electric.

In July 1997, I made this image on trip with George Pitarys and Bill Linley. George and I had flown to Halifax from Boston. We spent three glorious days photographing in Nova Scotia and did exceptionally well with the CB&CNS. At the time the railroad ran its eastward road freight in the morning and westward train in the afternoon, which favored sun angles most of the day. George and Bill’s expert knowledge of the line allowed us to make the most of every train.

I was especially fascinated by the opportunity to photograph locomotives against the seemingly endless blue waterscape. This elevated location at Cape Jack overlooking the Gulf of St Lawrence was one of the best places to make watery vistas. I exposed this on Fujichrome Provia 100F using my Nikon N90s and Nikon f2.8 80-200mm zoom lens. Exposure was calculated using a Sekonic Studio Deluxe handheld photocell and the camera’s internal matrix meter setting.

Here’s an excerpt from my text published in Locomotive:

The CB&CNS was created as the result of CN’s desire to spin-off lightly used feeder lines. Initially the CB&CNS was part of the RailTex family of short lines and acquired by Rail America in 1999. CB&CNS operated from Truro (in western Nova Scotia) to Sydney plus a few short branches. Until 1998, this railroad was one the final strongholds for big MLW-built Alco locomotives. These were regularly assigned to daily through freights. Most were painted in CB&CNS’s attractive black & yellow paint scheme with a large red lion to reflect the region’s Scottish heritage. 


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Canadian Pacific at Lyndonville, Vermont, October 8, 1992.


Classic New England Railroading.

Canadian Pacific
A Canadian Pacific RS-18 works at Lyndonville, Vermont on October 8, 1992. Exposed on Kodachrome 25 slide film with a Nikon F3T with 35mm PC lens.

In October 1992, Tom Carver advised me to photograph Canadian Pacific’s Lyndonville Subdivision in Northern Vermont. At the time, traffic was down to two or three trains per week. Yet, these always operated with Montreal Locomotive Work’s diesels and despite their infrequency, departed the yard at Newport, Vermont on a predictable schedule.

At the time, I was on one of my extended autumn visits to the Northeast from California, and enjoying the cool air and anticipating the colored foliage characteristic of the season.

I departed Monson, Massachusetts at 4am and drove north on I91 directly to Orleans, Vermont, just a short distance from the yard at Newport. It was a crisp and clear morning. I expected the train to depart at 9 am, and sure enough, by 9:30 it made its appearance. I exposed some very satisfactory slides at Orleans and turned to chase (as per plan).

Although traffic had dwindled, track speed was still pretty quick, and I made a lively pursuit of the train to make more photographs. The single RS-18 was chortling along, belching the occasion puff of exhaust.

At Lyndonville, the train paused to switch, giving me ample opportunity to make photos. This was one of the images I made on Kodachrome 25 with my Nikon F3T.

In July 2012, George Pitarys and I repeated this adventure. This time chasing a Vermont Railway train running from Newport to White River Junction, again making the timed interception at Orleans. Track speeds were slower, and our chase was more relaxed. I’ve not yet made plans for my 2032 chase of the line.

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Dublin, Flight Fest—15 September 2013

Photographing Low Flying Planes from Dublin Streets.

Jet Fighter_IMG_1058

On the afternoon of 15 September 2013, I joined some of my Irish friends along the South Quays of the River Liffey to watch Flight Fest. This free air show was a great opportunity to see a variety of aircraft in action.

Most of the time Tracking the Light focuses on railways, so this should be a refreshing interlude.

I exposed all of these photos with my Canon EOS 7D with either a 28-135mm zoom or a fixed 200mm prime lens. I set the ISO at 400 and most of my exposures were made at a 1000th of a second. Focusing was tricky, since the auto focus tends to get fooled by sky and some of the planes were traveling quickly.

I was especially interested in the B-17 Flying Fortress and Airbus A380. The variety of flying machines made for a nice afternoon. I used several vantage points all from city streets.

For other views of Dublin, check my Dublin Images Page on this site.

Last year, Dublin hosted the Tall Ships. This year Flight Fest. Perhaps next year they could host Tram Fest on the LUAS? It’s an idea anyway.

Helicopter with Irish Flag IMG_0941


Aer_Lingus_retro_plane_IMG_1112 1

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Amtrak 207 at New Haven, Connecticut, June 26, 2012

Fortuitous Encounter with the Highest Numbered P42.

On June 26, 2012, I was changing trains at New Haven, Connecticut while on my way to Philadelphia. I’d come in on the Springfield-New Haven shuttle. This was a push-pull set consisting of a former Metroliner cab car and an Amfleet coach pushed by Amtrak 207.

While on the platform I made a few images of this General Electric locomotive using my Lumix LX3 and my dad’s Leica M4 (loaded with Fuji Acros 100 black & white film).

Amtrak P42 locomotive
Amtrak P42 Genesis diesel 207 at New Haven, Connecticut on June 26, 2012. Lumix LX3 photo.

It was only later that it occurred to me that 207 is the highest numbered Amtrak Genesis P42.This nominal fact doesn’t make the photos any better, but I thought it was interesting and significant. Firsts and lasts have been long be marked by railway photographers.

What impressed me about 207 was that it was relatively clean and the paint was in good shape. This is a contrast with many of Amtrak’s P42s that have a battle-worn appearance.

Amtrak 207 at New Haven, Connecticut, June 26, 2012
Amtrak’s Springfield, Massachusetts—New Haven, Connecticut shuttle on the platform at New Haven on June 26, 2012. Lumix LX3 photo.
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Pan Am with Statue at North Bennington, Vermont, July 27, 2010.


A Bit of Art by the Tracks.

I was at North Bennington, Vermont to photograph Pan Am Railways’ (formerly Guilford Rail System) RJ-1 local freight that was performing freight interchange with Vermont Railway System.

This route had been dormant for many years but reopened in recent times. While I’d been to North Bennington on several occasions, this was the first time I photographed trains there.

The North Bennington Station has been beautifully restored. Out on the platform is a statue of a man gazing impatiently at his watch, as if he were a passenger waiting for a train.

Art with train
Statue with RJ-1 at North Bennington, Vermont on July 27, 2010. Exposed using a Canon EOS 7D with 100-400mm image stabilization zoom set at 190mm; f11 at 1/250 sec, ISO 200.

I made a variety of images of Pan Am’s former Canadian National GP40-2L working around the station. I like this one because it’s different. I used a smaller aperture to allow for greater depth of field, while focusing on the statue instead of the locomotive.

I believe that’s the old freight house beyond the locomotive and cars.


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Rhein River Valley Part 3

Views from the East Side of the Rhein—September 2013.

Rail Freight in Germany.
A DB freight rattles northward near Filsen on the east side of the Rhein in September 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.

For me the Right Bank (east side) of the Rhein has always been more challenging and more intriguing. This side has more freight, but the vistas are more difficult to access. Certainly getting the viewpoints that I envision take a little more work.

On this trip, with the help of maps and some advice from local photographers, I found several satisfactory spots to work from.

Where the Left Bank (west side) remains dominated by passenger traffic (with the occasional freight slotted in), the Right Bank is primarily a freight route, with the requisite hourly (half-hourly at peak times) stopping passenger train.

Since my last visit to the Right Bank in 2010, the passenger service has been upgraded with modern Stadler three and four piece Flirt-model railcars. The tide of freight ebbs and flows, but its not difficult to get four or five freights at one location in a relatively short span of time.

It seems that no sooner than one train has clattered out of sight when the next is on its way. If action on the east side ebbs too much, there are plenty of boats and barges on the Rhein as well as trains on the left side. Regardless of what happens, I find it easy to expose lots of images.

Stadler Flirt
A Stadler Flirt railcar is ready to come out of the sidings at Kaub. These modern electric railcars provide interval passenger service between freights on the east side of the river. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Lorchausen, Germany
Picturesque villages line the east side of the Rhein. This view of Lorchausen was exposed shortly before sunset with my Lumix LX3.
Rhein River Valley
A southward freight is led by a common DB Class 185 electric. This view is made from a vineyard near Lorch that offers superb views of trains on both sides of the Rhein. Lumix LX3 photo.
Plump grapes ripen in the autumn sun near Lorch, Germany. Lumix LX3 macro view.
Coal train on the Rhein.
A blue electric leads a train of PKP coal wagons on the west side of the river (as viewed from a Vineyard in Lorch). Exposed using a Canon EOS 7D with 200mm lens.
Looking south from a level crossing near Kaub, Germany. Lumix LX3 photo.
Looking south from a level crossing near Kaub, Germany. Lumix LX3 photo.
BLS freight on Rhein.
A BLS Cargo electric hums northbound at a lightly used level crossing near Kaub. Once a manned crossing with classic signal tower, gates are now automated. The BLS freights from Switzerland are among the most prized daily catches for some photographers. Lumix LX3 photo.


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Rhein River Valley Part 2


The Left Bank at Oberwesel—September 2013.

Oberwesel is south of Boppard and also on an elbow-bend in the river. It’s spectacularly set along the river and against steeply rising hills while featuring castles and a medieval city wall.

German passenger train.
A DB class 120 glides southward through Oberwesel in September 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.

The old city wall is set up as a tourist attraction and can be easily used as a platform for photography. Not only does this provide great views of the line on the Left Bank, but gives superb angles of the dual tunnels on the line serving the Right Bank.

I visited Oberwesel in April 2010, but the light was a bit dull, so I’ve been aching for another try at it on a clear day.

While there are some good angles in the morning, I found the best light angles were obtained after about 2 pm. September is a great time to photograph because the light is good throughout the day and it’s past the peak tourist season. Jostling elbows with the masses while trying to focus on a IC train might be challenging.

Locomotive with castle walls.
A diesel running as a light engine northbound made for an ideal opportunity to frame a train in the window of a medieval wall tower. Canon EOS 7D photo.

The parade of trains is unceasing. If one side of the river starts to lag, the other will seem to make up the difference. It was only during the lunch that traffic seemed to lull. Certainly the passenger trains kept coming, but the freights must of all paused for a snack.

Not far from the south edge of city wall in Oberwesel, we found a suitable restaurant with outdoor seating, a choice of beer, and a view of the tracks

A few hours at Oberwesel gave me more great images than I knew what to do with. I could make this a multi-installment post. Will you still be there for Oberwesel Left Bank Northward Views Part 12? Hmm?

Rhein River Valley at Oberwesel.
A DB Class 101 leads an InterCity passenger train southbound. This view is from the top of an old wall tower at Oberwesel, Germany. Canon EOS 7D.
Rhein River Valley at Oberwesel.
The Oberwesel city walls give good views of the line on the far side of the Rhein in the afternoon. A Swiss BLS locomotive is about to disappear into the tunnels opposite Oberwesel. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Rhein River Valley at Oberwesel.
An ERS Railways Class 189 hums along with a southward container train along the Rhein’s ‘right bank.’ Canon EOS 7D photo.
Rhein River Valley at Oberwesel.
Rich afternoon light graces a Taurus electric leading a northward InterCity train at Oberwesel. This view was made from the city wall. Canon EOS 7D photo. 
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Rhein River Valley Part 1


The Left Bank at Boppard and Vicinity—September 2013.

Germany’s Rhein offers one of the World’s great railway experiences. Here busy double track railways occupy both sides of the river, largely in sight of one another. This narrow picturesque valley is dotted with old villages, castles, churches and blanketed with vineyards which adds to its charm and make for more interesting photographs.

Germany ICE high speed train.
An ICE train glides northward along the Rhein as morning mists give way to sun. Canon EOS 7D photo.

For the all the challenges of wandering down lightly travel rural branch lines, or seeking out unusual, peculiar and elusive railway operations, sometimes it’s nice to get ‘a fix’ and go to a place where you will see a great volume and variety of trains in a comfortable setting.

The Rhein in early September hit the spot. The weather was perfect; a mix of sun and mist made for great lighting conditions, while temperatures were comfortable. No rain, no heavy wind. And best of all every few minutes a train comes rolling up or down the river.

Historically, the line on the west side of the river, the ‘Left Bank,’ was almost exclusively a passenger line and featured a continuous parade of Regional, IC, EC, and ICE trains, while the ‘Right Bank’ carried freight and an hourly local service.

Today, there are fewer IC/EC/ICE trains on the Rhein as many through services run on the high-speed line between Köln and Frankfurt. While IC/EC/ICE trains still operate about once an hour in each direction (plus local stopping services) now there are more paths for freights on the Left Bank which makes the line more interesting and more varied.

Boppard is located south of Koblenz on a elbow bend and allows for a variety of angles as the sun swings around. I’ve found from previous trips that Boppard is best in the morning. These photos are a selection from three days of photography based around Boppard.

I worked with three cameras; a Lumix LX3, Canon EOS 7D and Canon EOS 3 with Provia 100F film. Only the digital results are displayed here.

Rhein river valley.
A container train hums northward behind an ERS Railways Class 189 electric. Canon EOS 7D photo.


Rhein valley
A DB Class 101 electric leads southward IC train through vineyards near Boppard, Germany in September 2013. Exposed with a Lumix LX3. The Lumix is fitted with a Leica lens that allows for great depth of field.
Rhein valley
Light cloud softens the morning sun making for better contrast on this back lit southward freight near Boppard. Careful placement of wildflowers adds depth and interest to the image. Exposed with a Canon EOS 7D with 40mm pancake lens.
Desiro railcar
This class 642 Desiro railcar made for an unexpected visitor in the Rhein Valley. These are not the normal railcars used on the line. Canon EOS 7D with 40mm pancake lens.
German signals.
Old style Germany signals at Boppard. DB has been replacing this style of hardware with less complex signals. Many of the older signals survive on the Right Bank line. Canon EOS 7D photo.
German passenger train with castle.
A DB class 120 electric shoves on the back of northward IC train departing Boppard station. Lumix LX3 photo.
German passenger train at Boppard.
The morning sun glints off the side of an IC train paused at Boppard for a station stop.I’ve used the platform awning to shield the direct light of the sun from the camera lens to avoid unwanted flare. Lumix LX3 photo.







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German Coal Railway—Part 2

RWE Power: Coal trains, power plants and wires.

RWE Power coal train.
An RWE electric reverses a coal train near the Neurath Power Station. September 2012. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Continuing to explore RWE Power’s coal network brought us to the company’s Nord-Sud-Bahn. Although much of the line is sequestered by trees or inaccessible, we found some recommended locations toward the north-end of the route near the Neurath Power Station.

Our second afternoon proved pleasant weather-wise, and the continuous parade of trains, including a diesel-hauled limestone run, made for a successful photo adventure.

Among the advantages of the North-Sud-Bahn as stated in the May 2013 article in Today’s Railways, is a greater variety of trains.

Although it’s difficult to convey in photographs, what we found interesting was that many of the northward trains reversed up the line, with the locomotive at the back and the rear hopper making a loud beeping to provide warning.

It seemed that all of RWE’s trains moved a gentle speeds which eases the photographic process.

I mostly worked with my Canon EOS 7D, but also exposed some color slides with my Canon EOS 3. In addition to the trains, I made a few photos of the related power infrastructure—impressive because of its enormous scale.

RWE Power coal train.
RWE Power electric 542 leads a laden coal train near Neurath. September 2012. Canon EOS 7D photo.
A diesel leads a train of limestone hoppers near Neurath. September 2012. Canon EOS 7D photo.
A diesel leads a train of limestone hoppers near Neurath. September 2012. Canon EOS 7D photo.
RWE Power's Neurath Power Station.
RWE Power’s Neurath Power Station.
RWE Power's Neurath Power Station.
RWE Power’s Neurath Power Station.
RWE Power.
High voltage electric pylons stand like enormous soldiers at attention. These power lines are an important part of the electrical infrastructure related to RWE Power’s railway operations.
A panned view of an RWE Power EL1 electric locomotive. The line is electrified with an unusual 6000 volt 50Hz standard. Canon EOS 7D photo.
A panned view of an RWE Power EL1 electric locomotive. The line is electrified with an unusual 6000 volt 50Hz standard. Why a pan? This is an effective way of separating the dark green locomotive from the green trees. Canon EOS 7D photo.
A Vossloh diesel leads a coal train that originated off the RWE network and was delivered via the Deutsche Bahn network. The hoppers are of a smaller lighter variety than those used in captive service on RWE's lines.
A Vossloh diesel leads a coal train that originated off the RWE network and was delivered via the Deutsche Bahn network. The hoppers are of a smaller lighter variety than those used in captive service on RWE’s lines.









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German Coal Railway—Part 1

RWE Power’s Intensive Rail Network—September 2013.

RWE Power lignite train
Neither our map or Sat-Nav showed the new RWE-Power mainline at Buir, Germany—a line just recently opened. Yet, crossing the line on a road bridge we spotted this loaded train. We hadn’t been off the plane for even two hours. Canon EOS 7D photo.

German coal railway? 60 million tones annually? An article in May 2013 Today’s Railways Europe peaked my curiosity. Taking advantage of cheap fares on Ryan Air from Dublin to Maastricht, then into a Hertz rental car for the drive over the border brought an Irish friend and me trackside by early afternoon.

While I’ve long been aware of a heavy coal railway near Köln, despite regular trips to Germany over the last 20 years, until last week I’d never bothered to investigate it.

RWE Power (formerly Rheinbraun) operates an unusual railway. This is a largely electrified network which on its main stems primarily carries lignite coal from enormous open pits to nearby power stations. It is built to a very heavy standard and tracks are separated wider than normal to allow for larger than normal loading gauge.

Complicating matters, we’d forgotten to bring the Today’s Railways article with us. But we managed to find the tracks anyway. Our first glimpse of the RWE Power mainline was of the old Hambachbahn double track line serving the Tagebau Hambach coalfield. This line is soon to be removed to allow expansion of the coalfield.

Finding nothing moving on this section we decided to relocate and accidentally stumbled upon the ‘new’ Hambachbahn double track line located a couple of miles south of the old line, and parallel to Deutsche Bahn’s east-west Aachen and Köln main line at the village of Buir.

RWE Power is presently undertaking a massive relocation of railway, A4 autobahn, and town to develop the coal beneath. The newly built railway is extremely impressive and could easily be mistaken for a high-speed line.

At Buir, we met a local railway photographer named Björn who gave us lots of advice and assisted our further photography. As it turned out, the new line was only being used for loaded trains (which passed about every 20 minutes), while the old line was handling empties.

RWE Power coal train
Driving toward Bergheim we found this location on the new line, near the junction with the older (so to be closed) RWE Power Hambachbahn route. In the lead is a 1950-1960s era Class EL 1 electric locomotive.
RWE Power coal train
We stayed overnight in Bergheim and returned to Buir the following morning. The day began clear and bright and a procession of coal trains kept us busy. Exposed with a Canon EOS 7D and 40mm Pancake lens.


RWE Power coal train
This 300mm view demonstrates the heavily built nature of the new (relocated) Hambachbahn line which is built in a deep cutting. Train speed is a steady plod (perhaps 30 kph?). In the lead is a class EL 2000 electric. Canon EOS 7D fitted with 75-300mm zoom lens.
RWE Power coal train
At this point near the Tagebau Hambach coal field, the line follows a north-south alignment. By 10am clouds were racing across the sky making for some tricky exposures. Canon EOS 7D photo.
RWE Power coal train
Trailing view of a coal loads from a public road bridge west of Buir. Rarely did we wait more than half and hour for a loaded train to pass.

We spent a full 24 hours studying the railway and its operations. More to come!

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Conrail SD80MACs Near Middlefield, Massachusetts.

Twenty Cylinder Monsters Roar West on July 19, 1997.

General Motors SD80MACs
On July 19, 1997, a pair of Conrail SD80MACs is roaring westward (but progressing at crawl) on the 1.67 percent climb just passed Milepost 130 near the old Middlefield Station location. It is here that the 1912 line relocation rejoined the original 1840s Western Rail Road alignment. (seen disappearing into the trees immediately to the left of the SD80MACs) Exposed on Fujichrome with a Nikon N90s and Nikon 80-200mm zoom lens.

Between the mid-1980s and mid-1990s, I made many trips to the old Boston & Albany ‘West End.’ I often focused on the east slope of Washington Hill, where the combination of scenery, ruling grade and traffic patterns was especially conducive to my photography.

In 1995, Conrail ordered a small fleet of SD80MAC diesels from General Motors’ Electro-Motive Division. These were Conrail’s first AC traction locomotives and specially painted in a new white and light blue livery. (Later also applied to a small order of SD70MACs).

They were also the only modern GM diesel locomotives delivered domestically with the 20 cylinder 710 engine.

From early 1996 until CSX assumed operation, pairs of SD80MACs were common on the old B&A route. I made a concerted effort to make images of these machines. I exposed this color slide in the summer of 1997 when the locomotives were still relatively new.

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Electro-Motive Switcher in Holyoke, Massachusetts August 1987.

Capturing an Engine in its Environment.

Enthusiasm counts for a lot. I had just recently purchased a second-hand Leica M2 with 50mm Summicron, and I was seeing photos everywhere I looked.

I often poked around Holyoke, where the mix of 19th century mill buildings and decaying railroad infrastructure offered endless possibilities for photography.

Springfield Terminal 1401 switches a carload of scrap metal at the north-end of Holyoke Yard on August 20, 1987. Exposed on Professional Kodachrome 25 (PKM) using a Leica M2 with 50mm Summicron.

At that time, Guilford Transportation Industries was the big show in town. In addition to several through freights and a local, a switcher was often on duty drilling the Boston & Maine yard.

On August 20, 1987, I found this former Boston & Maine SW1, recently repainted and renumbered as Springfield Terminal 1401. I exposed this image from the street, across from the old passenger station. For me it captures the feel of Holyoke at the time.

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VIA Rail, Montreal, Quebec, October 24, 2004

A Clear Autumnal Canadian Morning.

Autumn is my favorite time to make photographs. Crisp days, rich low sunlight, and bright rusty foliage make for a great combination of conditions.

In Late October 2004, Tim Doherty and I spent several days exposing photographs around Montreal. On the morning of October 24, we worked this location south of downtown which featured a shining skyline view.

VIA Rail Montreal, Canada.
I exposed this image with my Nikon N90s and 80-200 zoom lens on Fujichrome film.
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Southern Pacific 4449 at Worden, Oregon, April 1991.

My First Glimpse of the Daylight.

SP Daylight painted steam locomotive
Southern Pacific Gs4 4449 in the classic Daylight livery works railroad-direction west near Worden, Oregon in April 1991. Exposed on Kodachrome 25 slide film. Exposure calculated manually using a Sekonic Studio Deluxe handheld photocell.

Southern Pacific’s streamlined Daylight was one of the great classic American trains. It was so popular that a recreation of the train was assembled in the 1980s using traditional equipment, including one of the last surviving SP 4-8-4s, the often photographed engine 4449.

In April 1991, I was traveling with Brian Jennison and  J.D. Schmid in pursuit of various steam locomotives converging on Sacramento, California for RailFair 1991. Earlier in the week we’d made images of Union Pacific’s 844 and 3985 working former Western Pacific lines.

We’d driven overnight to this location just north of the California-Oregon state line. While I’d photographed SP lines in Oregon the previous year, Worden was new to me. The location was selected for the sweeping curve on an upgrade, which was hoped to produce a bit smoke. The location was selected for the sweeping curve on an upgrade, which was hoped to produce a bit smoke.

We knew that 4449 was on its way. I was fascinated. While I was very familiar with SP’s magnificent class Gs4 ‘Golden State’ 4-8-4s, having often seen them in photographs and magazines, this was my first experience with the engine in person.

By the time the train came into view, at least a dozen photographers were on site. A helicopter had landed on the far side of the tracks with video crew on board. This was more than just a train, it was an event!

I positioned my Nikon F3T with f4 200mm lens on my 3021 Bogen tripod loaded with Kodachrome 25. I also made exposures my Leica M2 handheld.

I made a selection of images as the train roared by. My favorite is this view, which has been various reproduced in books and other publications.

I deliberately broke a variety of conventions in the composition. Traditional steam photographers might shake their heads in dismay. I’m positioned on the ‘dark side’ of the tracks. I’m using a long telephoto lens. Instead of a centered view, I’ve positioned the train toward the left side of the frame.

Probably the most unusual thing was with my focus point. Instead of setting the focus on the front of the locomotive, I aimed it more toward the tail car. The combined result of the compositional effects is a peculiar tension that draws the eye toward the back of the train and to the scene, despite the dominance and drama of the engine.

Unhappy with this? Well, I also made a rather straightforward 50mm view. And, if that’s not good enough, did I mention the other dozen or so photographers?

Southern Pacific Gs4 4449 in the classic Daylight livery works railroad-direction west near Worden, Oregon in April 1991. Exposed on Kodachrome 25 slide film. Exposure calculated manually using a Sekonic Studio Deluxe handheld photocell.

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Monon Semaphores, Romney, Indiana, June 24, 2004

Old General Railway Signal Semaphores In Corn Country.

CSX’s former Monon was among the last bastions of semaphores in automatic block territory in the United States. I made this image on the morning of June 24, 2004. While the line only saw a few trains in daylight, there were enough moves to keep the signals busy.

GRS Type 2A signals.
Exposed on Fujichrome with a Nikon F3T and Nikkor 180mm lens. The blade on the left displays ‘clear’, while that on the right shows ‘approach’. A northward train was on its way.

I wrote about this signal installation in my 2003 book, Railroad Signaling, published by MBI. This has since been reprinted as a softcover book. See: Quayside Press.



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MBTA at Walpole, Massachusetts, March 2, 1988

New EMD F40PH-2C with Classic Semaphore.

In the late 1980s only a few active semaphores remained in New England. One of the best places to see them was at the crossing of former New Haven Railroad lines in Walpole, Massachusetts.

Walpole, Massachusetts.
MBTA F40PH-2C crosses the diamond at Walpole. In 1988 this was still protected by New Haven-era semaphores. Exposed on Koadchrome 25 film using a Leica M@ and 35mm Summicron lens.

I made this photo of a new Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority F40PH-2 leading an outward train on the Franklin Line on the afternoon of March 2, 1988. The attraction for me was the contrast between the new locomotive and the ancient signal.

A variation of this image appeared in TRAINS Magazine some years ago. I exposed it on Kodachrome 25 using my Leica M2 with a f2.0 35mm Summicron.The combination of clear New England light, Leica optics, and K25 film enhanced the scene.



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Steam to Kilkenny, August 25, 2013—Part 4

Irish Rail Vignettes: Trains From the Train.

RPSI Kilkenny excursion
Approaching Carlow. Canon EOS 7D Photo.

Traveling by special train allows unusual perspectives of otherwise ordinary operations. It allows for images of technological contrasts and angles not normally possible.

The RPSI’s vintage Cravens are ideal rolling platforms from which to make photos because the windows open. Also, since the train travels at more conservative speeds, you have more time to absorb and record the passing scenes.

I’ll often work with a zoom lens and fast shutter speed (1/500th of a second or higher) as to quickly frame an image and stop the action.

Other opportunity for photos are when the train stops for water, to collect or discharge passengers, and other long pauses at station platforms.  All of these images were exposed during the The Marble City express excursion on August 25, 2013.

Inchicore works, Dublin
Stored 201 class diesels at Inchicore. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Irish Rail 081 shunts the RPSI Cravens at Kilkenny as an ICR arrives from Waterford. It's very rare to see a locomotive in Kilkenny since all the regular passenger trains are multiple units and the freight avoids the station. Canon EOS 7D Photo.
Irish Rail 081 shunts the RPSI Cravens at Kilkenny as an ICR arrives from Waterford. It’s very rare to see a locomotive in Kilkenny since all the regular passenger trains are multiple units and the freight avoids the station. Canon EOS 7D Photo.
Irish Rail 081 shunts the RPSI Cravens at Kilkenny
Irish Rail 081 shunts the RPSI Cravens at Kilkenny


Mark 4 at Kildare.
Cork to Dublin Mark4 races up-road at Kildare on August 25, 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.


Cork to Dublin Mark4 races uproad at Kildare with 201 class 232 pushing at the back  on August 25, 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Cork to Dublin Mark4 races uproad at Kildare with 201 class 232 pushing at the back on August 25, 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Double ended 2700 class railcar 2751 at Inchicore. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Double-ended single 2700-class railcar 2751 at Inchicore. Canon EOS 7D photo.
GAA supporters line the platform at Drumcondra Station.
GAA supporters line the platform at Drumcondra Station. Lumix LX3 photo.
A 29000-series railcar departs Connolly Station.
A 29000-series railcar departs Connolly Station.


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Steam to Kilkenny, August 25, 2013—Part 3

Up Close with Locomotive 461.

RPSI 461
461 at Athy. Lumix LX3 photo.

Excursions are a great opportunity to make detailed photos of railway equipment. In addition to the traditional angles, I like to get close and focus on characteristic elements of locomotives and railway cars.

Locomotive 461 is an old favorite. I’ve been photographing it for more than 15 years, and I think it’s safe to say that I have a fair few photos of it. But that’s never caused me pause; I keep looking for new ways and new angles on this old machine.

Here’s just a few from The Marble City trip on August 25, 2013.

Locomotive 461
461’s builders plate. The Lumix LX3 allows for exceptionally close focusing for macro views such as this one. I switched off the auto focus and set the focus manually which gave me better control. Lumix LX3 photo.
Locomotive 461
Classic three-quarter ‘roster shot’ (rods down), a photographic style that evolved from the 19th century ‘builders photograph’ used to document new locomotives by their manufacturers. I made this image with my Canon EOS 7D, classic builders photos were exposed on glass plates.
Dublin & South Eastern Railway
Wheel bearing cover with the initials of 461s first owner, the Dublin & South Eastern Railway. Lumix LX3 photo.
Dublin & South Eastern Railway
461 drive wheel. Lumix LX3 photo.
Dublin & South Eastern Railway 461
461 detail view exposed with a Canon EOS 7D.
Hose draining at Kilkenny.
After watering the locomotive, RPSI crews laid out hoses on the platform to drain. This is an important part of the process, but rarely photographed. Lumix LX3 photo.
Dublin & South Eastern Railway 461
A wisp of steam wafts by the cab on locomotive 461. Canon EOS 7D photo.









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Steam to Kilkenny, August 25, 2013—Part 2


Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s “The Marble City.”

Portrait at Athy with the Lumix LX3.
Portrait at Athy with the Lumix LX3.

I was impressed by the efficiency of the trip. Irish Rail employees and RPSI volunteers cooperated to bring the trip off and ensure everyone on board had a safe and enjoyable trip.

As on other recent Irish excursions, I tend to focus on the people as well as the equipment. These trips are as much about the people as either the destination or the equipment.

Yet, it’s always interesting to see how people react to the steam locomotive. Passing Drumcondra Station in suburban Dublin, I watch the expressions of Irish Rail’s regular passengers as 461 puffed through with our excursion. These ranged from total bewilderment, as if a ghost from the past drifted across their bedroom, to nods of approval, and the occasional wave.

At every stop, passengers and passers by flocked to see the engine. The swarms of people are as much part of the scene as the engine and crew.

Yet, I found plenty of time to make close-ups of the equipment too. Check tomorrow’s post for some close-up views.

RPSI 461 at Kilkenny.
On the footplate of 461. Canon EOS 7D photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
RPSI train hosts. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
Checking tickets in the traditional fashion. Canon EOS 7D photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
Driver Ken Fox has been on the footplate for many miles.
An RPSI member assists with servicing the locomotive.
An RPSI member assists with servicing the locomotive.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
Steam locomotives make for great photo subjects. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
On 461’s footplate. It’s hard work, but has great rewards. Canon EOS 7D photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
Planning to inspect the locomotive with an expert eye. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI trip to Kilkenny.
At Athy 461 hadmany fans. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Tune in tomorrow for some nuts and bolts.

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Steam to Kilkenny, August 25, 2013

Passengers enjoying the spin behind steam. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Passengers enjoying the spin behind steam. Canon EOS 7D photo.

 Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s “The Marble City.”

Locomotive 461.
461 at Connolly Station, Dublin.

On Sunday, August 25, 2013 locomotive 461 hauled a well-patronized Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s excursion from Dublin’s Connolly Station to Kilkenny via Cherryville Junction.

As is often the case this time of year in Ireland, it was a largely gray day. Steam locomotives present a difficult subject on warm dull days. As a result, I opted to travel on the train, rather than stake out a spot in the countryside to try for the one ‘master shot’.

This gave me ample opportunity to make close-ups of the locomotive, its crew, and friends traveling with the train. As well as pictures from the window.

I’d intended to bring my trusty old Nikon F3 to make a few color slides, but on the previous evening, I’d been making time exposures of Dublin and the trusty old battery in the F3 gave up the ghost. Failing to follow my own advice, I didn’t have a spare. (Although I have plenty of spare cameras).

As a result all of my images of “The Marble City” trip were exposed digitally. Some with my Lumix LX3, others with my Canon EOS 7D with 28-135 zoom. Check Tracking the Light over the next few days to view some of my results.

Steam to Kilkenny, August 25, 2013
Overseeing boarding at Connolly Station, Dublin. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI trip August 25, 2013
Locomotive driver Ken Fox greets RPSI’s members on the platform at Connolly. Lumix LX3 Photo.
RPSI trip August 25, 2013
This RPSI safety vest shows the signs of steam service. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI trip August 25, 2013
After leaving Dublin, ‘The Marble City’ was overtaken by the Dublin-Cork train at the end of the quad track on the down road at Hazelhatch. (Up tracks are to the left of the platform) Canon EOS 7D photo.


Lumix LX3 photo.
Passengers enjoying the spin behind steam.
Startled cattle run alongside the train near Bagenalstown. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Startled cattle run alongside the train near Bagenalstown. Canon EOS 7D photo.


More to come!





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