Tracking the Light visits Ashland, Virginia—June 4, 2015.

I’d had a ticket on Amtrak 95 for Main Street in Richmond. However, a call to my old friend Doug Riddell resulted in a change of plan.

I’ve known Doug for more than 20 years, since I was worked at Pentrex Publishing. Now Doug is retired from Amtrak and living near Ashland.

Getting off the train in the middle of the street is an experience. Especially when its raining. Doug and I had lunch at the Trackside Grill, a short walk from the station.

We positioned ourselves along the street near the passenger station to catch Amtrak’s Auto Train, which as I soon learned, still routinely runs with Amtrak’s older 800-Series Genesis diesels.

Amtrak's Autotrain with a pair of 800-Series Genesis. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Amtrak’s Autotrain with a pair of 800-Series Genesis. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Track speed down the street is limited to 35 mph during the day. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Track speed down the street is limited to 35 mph during the day. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
The Auto train is Amtrak's longest and heaviest run. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
The Auto train is Amtrak’s longest and heaviest run. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
June 4, 2015 at 6:05 pm at Ashland, Virginia. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
June 4, 2015 at 6:05 pm at Ashland, Virginia. Fuji X-T1 digital camera.
Amtrak 125 makes its station stop on Track 3 at Ashland, Virginia. This is one of the relatively new trains destined for Norfolk, Virginia.
Amtrak 125 makes its station stop on Track 3 at Ashland, Virginia. This is one of the relatively new trains destined for Norfolk, Virginia.

The weather wasn’t the best, but there was plenty of action on the old RF&P and it was great to see Doug again.

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