BNSF in the Feather River Canyon-1

On October 30, 2003, I spent a day photographing BNSF and Union Pacific trains on the old Western Pacific route through California’s Feather River Canyon.

This exceptionally scenic route has long been a popular place to picture trains.

Although photogenic, one of the conceptual problems with the canyon making the balance between train and scenery work.

Too much train, and the canyon becomes a sideshow. Too much canyon and the train is lost in the scenery.

One way to make balanced is through the clever use of lighting.

That’s what I’ve done here.

Exposed on Kodak 120-size Tri-X using a Rolleiflex Model T with a Zeiss Tessar; processed in Ilfotec HC, and scanned using an Epson V750. Final contrast adjustments were made in Lightroom to emphasize highlights and lighten shadows.

I’ve pictured an eastward BNSF climbing through Rich Bar, and by back lighting the train, I’ve helped emphasize it’s form that might otherwise be lost in the darker reaches of the canyon.


Tracking the Light Posts Everyday.

2 comments on “BNSF in the Feather River Canyon-1

  1. Dave Clinton on said:

    Brian, why in God’s name would you use B&W film in this day and age? Especially in a situation like this, with the very colorful BNSF paint scheme and countryside to bring their colors out. I can see using B&W for pictures of PennCentral but with the beautiful colors that came out of Kodachrome or that come out of digital now, has me mystified and not interested in even opening anything else marked B&W!

  2. OMG!
    The beautiful Feather River Canyon has turned into the same bummer setting as the shot that looked like the steel mill city!
    In B&W, you don’t have to worry about contrasts and the like because everything’s BLACK, WHITE or gray that should be green, brown, white, blue, orange and etc. Whew! But it is different……

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