Delaware-Lackawanna PT98/PT97

Sometimes finding the train is more than half the challenge. On Saturday October 17, 2015, Pat Yough and I had been following the old Delaware, Lackawanna & Western mainline with an awareness that Genesee Valley Transportation’s Delaware-Lackawanna was operating its ‘Portland turn’ to interchange with Norfolk Southern.

Finally, we found the train as it was arriving at Slateford Junction.

The attraction of D-L’s freights is that they operate with antique Alco diesels. Alco exited the American locomotive business more than 46 years ago, so finding these old machines hard at work remains a real treat.

Delaware Lackawanna Railroad's herald is patterned after the old Lehigh Valley logo.
Delaware Lackawanna Railroad’s herald is patterned after the old Lehigh Valley logo.
Alco's Century-636 (C-636) was among the last models produced. This locomotive served Penn-Central and Conrail, and still works for D-L.
Alco’s Century-636 (C-636) was among the last models produced. This locomotive served Penn-Central and Conrail, and still works for D-L.
DL-PT98 arrives at Slateford Junction. It is passing below the remnants of the old Lackawanna Cut-off bridge over the Delaware River.
DL-PT98 arrives at Slateford Junction. It is passing below the remnants of the old Lackawanna Cut-off bridge over the Delaware River.

While D-L’s portion of the freight movement tends to be well documented in recent years as a function of the Alcos, the Norfolk Southern connection is often ignored. As an historian this bothers me.

I have to admit that I too have been guilty of this photographic censorship. While I’ve photographed the Portland turn on several occasions, I haven’t made much of an effort to seek out the NS portion of this run. That is, until last Saturday.

Pat and I agreed, that if the D-L’s connection with NS were to be moved, photos of the NS at Portland would be a rare commodity indeed. So, while we made a point of catching the Alcos at work, we also went after NS H-76, which featured a nice collection of vintage EMD diesels.

Norfolk Southern local H76 delivers interchange to the D-L at Portland on October 17, 2015. Like the D-L this operates on former Lackawanna Railroad trackage.
Norfolk Southern local H76 delivers interchange to the D-L at Portland on October 17, 2015. Like the D-L this operates on former Lackawanna Railroad trackage.
At Portland, the D-L and Norfolk Southern interchange freight.
At Portland, the D-L and Norfolk Southern interchange freight.
1970s EMD's meet 1960s Alcos at Portland, PA.
1970s EMD’s meet 1960s Alcos at Portland, PA.
D-L's Alco/MLW diesels represent a local attraction at Portland.
D-L’s Alco/MLW diesels represent a local attraction at Portland.
Norfolk Southern SD40-2 3575 is framed by the old DL&W station at Portland.
Norfolk Southern SD40-2 3575 is framed by the old DL&W station at Portland.
Working westward, D-L PT97 charges below a road bridge at East Shroudsburg, Pennsylvania. This is the only regular move on this section of the old Lackawanna mainline. It made an impressive show!
Working westward, D-L PT97 charges below a road bridge at East Shroudsburg, Pennsylvania. This is the only regular move on this section of the old Lackawanna mainline. It made an impressive show!

All around it was a successful afternoon. It was also the first time that I’ve photographed the D-L using digital cameras. A fair few years had passed since my last visit!

 

 

6 comments on “Delaware-Lackawanna PT98/PT97

  1. Jeez, if we had known that was you, we would have introduced ourselves, haha!

  2. All your shots referencing shorelines/mainline RR’s is very cool and
    brings one back to know that small time RRing in a big way still
    exists. Also, the use of old ALCO’s in today’s RRing scene is very
    cool.

    Thanks for taking pictures of the obscure.

    Dan

  3. DAVE CLINTON on said:

    Nice set of pics, Brian. It’s very possible that someday passenger trains will pass over the old DL&W Delaware Water Gap bridge, running between Scranton and Hoboken, NJ. If PA and NJ can get their act together!

  4. John O'Connor on said:

    Ok – think I found it – once I looked up Portland, PA

  5. John O'Connor on said:

    Brian,

    Could you give a Google map reference or more context for us Irish that aren’t familiar with the fine details of the old railroads. Love to look a location like this on maps.
    (so far Slateford Junction on maps points me to a station in Edinburgh!!!!).

    Tx – John