Empties Climbing Away from the River Blackwater at Corbane.
In August 2014, Denis McCabe and I continued our on-going exploration of the Bord na Mona (Irish Peat Board) narrow gauge railway network. (see: Irish Bog Railways—Part 1, More Adventures with Ireland’s Bord na Mona—September 2013, and Bord na Mona’s Ash Train, among other previous posts).
We followed a pair of empties from Shannonbridge, eastward toward Ferbane. Access is limited, owing to the nature of the bogs. Toward the end of the day, we set up at the N62 highway overpass, where the Bord na Mona’s line climbs away from the River Blackwater.
My challenge was making the most of the backlit scene. The sun was setting almost immediately behind the train. I opted for my 200mm lens in order to compress the perspective, eliminate the sky, and minimize the effects of flare. I positioned myself near post on the side of the road to help shade the front element of my lens.
Here the effects of backlighting combined with the long telephoto lens make for a cinematic look; the exhaust of the locomotive is more pronounced, the wavy condition of the tracks are exaggerated, and the pastoral scene made more impressive.
I particularly like the silhouette of the train driver in the cab, which emphasizes the human element.
My only disappointment with the photos is that the following train hadn’t effectively enter the scene. (Often Bord na Mona trains working in pairs follow one right after the other. In this situation, the following train was just around the bend.) But, I’ve had plenty of opportunities to make images with two or more Bord na Mona trains, so I’ll settle for this one of a lone train.
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