CSX at Coldspring, New York.

Local freight on the old New York Central Hudson Division. In yesterday’s post, I wrote of my brief, but fortuituously timed and very productive visit to Fort Montgomery on CSX’s River Line (See: Hudson River Freight at Ft. Montgomery).

Having done well on the West Shore, I thought I give the east side of the river a chance.

Back in the late 1980s, I made regular trips to old Hudson Division.

At that time the former New Haven FL9 dual mode diesels were still standard on many trains, while Conrail operations on the old West Shore seem sparse compared with today.

I crossed the Hudson on the famed Bear Mountain Bridge, a suspension bridge that offers a commanding view of the lower Hudson Valley. I turned north on 9D and as I drove along, I noted a northward Amtrak train stopped on the mainline at Manitou.

This was not the normal state of affairs. When I got to Cold Spring, I saw a southward CSX local freight also stopped on the mainline, and well spotted for a scenic image.

Here was an opportunity, but I’ve learned from experience that time can be precious in these types of situations. Take the Bird in Hand.

CSX local pause north of Cold Spring, New York. He was a photo opportunity, but it would last long. Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens.
CSX local pause north of Cold Spring, New York. He was a photo opportunity, but it wouldn’t last long. Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens.
Only about 30 seconds after I got out of the car, I could here Amtrak train 283 approaching. Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens.
Only about 30 seconds after I got out of the car, I could hear Amtrak train 283 approaching. Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens.

Without wasting anymore time, I pulled off the road, got out of the car with Canon EOS 7D in hand and exposed a few frames. As I was reaching for my EOS 3 (loaded with Provia) I could hear the northward Amtrak train approaching, so rather than fuss with the film camera, I resumed work with the 7D and made a photo of the two trains nose to nose.

Then I exposed a couple of slides. But only moments after Amtrak had passed the CSX freight began to move. I had enough time to swap to a wide angle and expose a panoramic view.

This was an extra photo. It shows the whole setting and the CSX local accelerating away. In just a minutes time I'd taken several unusual images. If I'd mucked about and delayed acting for any reason, I would have missed all the action. Canon EOS 7D with 20mm lens.
This was an extra photo. It shows the whole setting and the CSX local accelerating away. In just a minutes time I’d taken several unusual images.  Canon EOS 7D with 20mm lens.

If I had dallied, even for a minute (as in 60 seconds), I wouldn’t have been able to get these images. When the moment is right: act.

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