Tag Archives: Cobh

Cobh Junction‑Glounthaune, Co. Cork—Revisited.

The trackage arrangement at Irish Rail’s Cobh Junction, Glounthaune gives the location great photographic interest.

Here the Cobh Branch and Midleton lines divide.

Historically, the line to Midleton (left) had continued to Youghal and was envisioned as a scheme to continue on to Waterford. Later the Cobh Branch (right) was built to reach the old port at Queenstown (Cobh).

The Cobh Branch developed as double-track suburban route, and ultimately the priority of the lines at the junction was reversed.

By the 1980s route via Midleton to Youghal had languished and allowed to go fallow. Ten years ago, after decades of inactivity, Irish Rail rebuilt and revitalized the route as far as Midleton. Today both lines are busy with passenger trains.

A Cobh Branch train bound for Kent Station, Cork approaches Glounthaune station.

This week, Ken Fox gave me a tour of Cork area railways, including trips along the Cobh and Midleton routes.

I made this view from the station footbridge at Cobh Junction, Glounthaune using a FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm lens.

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Glounthaune Sunrise—Cobh Junction Glint in 3 photos.

Last week on a visit to Cork, I made these views of Irish Rail’s 2600 railcars working Cork-Cobh and Cork-Midleton services from Glounthaune village looking across the water toward Glounthaune/Cobh Junction station.

I was working with my FujiFilm XT1 and Canon EOS-3 cameras. The Canon was loaded with Provia 100F, and we’ll have to wait for the slides to be processed.

Regular Tracking the Light readers know that I often favor low-light ‘glint’.

This is tricky light to expose satisfactorily. It is a matter of getting the balance between highlights and shadows right, which is a subjective decision on the part of the photographer.

Which is your favourite?

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Irish Rail’s Cobh Branch.

My Whirlwind Tour—October 2014.

I made this photo of an inbound 2600 series railcar on the afternoon of October 6, 2014 near the church at Glounthaune, Co. Cork. Exposed with a Lumix LX7 and modified in post-processing.
I made this photo of an inbound 2600 series railcar on the afternoon of October 6, 2014 near the church at Glounthaune, Co. Cork. Exposed with a Lumix LX7 and modified in post-processing.

A similar view of another 2600, this one exposed using my Canon EOS 7D with 20mm lens. This photo is unadjusted, except for scaling.
A similar view of another 2600, this one exposed using my Canon EOS 7D with 20mm lens. This photo is unadjusted, except for scaling. I use different camera/lens combinations to alter my perspective. Compare these two images at Glounthaune, exposed only minutes apart, but with different cameras and slightly different angles.

Irish Rail operates an excellent and well-patronized service on its Kent Station to Cobh line. In conjunction with this service are trains running on the recently reopened line to Midleton. Yesterday’s post focused on Cobh Junction, Glounthaune, where the lines divide.

In yesterday's post, I focused on a series of sunrise images exposed overlooking Cobh Junction. For this view, made minutes before sunrise, I used my Canon EOS 7D with 100mm telephoto. By raising the ISO and using the lens nearly wideopen (f2.0) I was able to stop the action despite relatively low light. For the sunrise, I used by Fujichrome slide film and digital photography.
In yesterday’s post, I focused on a series of sunrise images exposed overlooking Cobh Junction. For this view, made minutes before sunrise, I used my Canon EOS 7D with 100mm telephoto. By raising the ISO and using the lens nearly wideopen (f2.0) I was able to stop the action despite relatively low light. For the sunrise, I used both Fujichrome slide film and digital photography.

Glounthaune Station at Cobh Junction was just a short walk away. I made this image from the footbridge at the station to show the yellow signal with a feather (indicating a diverging route with the next signal at 'danger' [red]). A Midleton-bound railcar was signaled to depart the station, but needed to wait for an inbound train before it could proceed to Midleton.
Glounthaune Station at Cobh Junction was just a short walk away. I made this image from the footbridge at the station to show the yellow signal with a feather (indicating a diverging route with the next signal at ‘danger’ [red], seen in the distance). A Midleton-bound railcar was signaled to depart the station, but needed to wait for an inbound train before it could proceed to Midleton.

Here's my view with the Lumix LX7 of the Midleton railcar departing Glounthaune. There was excellent ridership from this station in the morning.
Here’s my view with the Lumix LX7 of the Midleton railcar departing Glounthaune. There was excellent ridership from this station in the morning.

Irish Rail’s Ken Fox gave me a personal tour of the line, driving me by road to best spots and advising me on train times, the history of the railway, and his personal experiences with the line.

While the equipment on the line consists largely of the 1990s-built 2600-series diesel railcars, the frequency of trains and the great scenery along the line, make for ample photographic opportunities.

I’m always looking for a new angle, but also to recreate the angle I used in older photos. I’d made my first images on the Cobh branch back in 1999, and since then the line had been re-signaled among other changes.

Irish Rail 2612 approaches its station stop at Carrigaloe, County Cork. Exposed with Canon EOS 7D.
Irish Rail 2612 approaches its station stop at Carrigaloe, County Cork. Exposed with my Canon EOS 7D.

Looking across Cork harbour toward Passage West, which was served by a narrow gauge suburban line until the 1930s. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Looking across Cork harbour toward Passage West, which was served by a narrow gauge suburban line until the 1930s. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Lumix LX7 view of a 2600 along Cork harbour at Carrigaloe.
Lumix LX7 view of a 2600 along Cork harbour at Carrigaloe.

Trailing view from a hillside at Carrigaloe.
Trailing view from a hillside at Carrigaloe.

Irish Rail 2612 makes its station stop at Rushbrook, County Cork on its way to Cobh. I had time to swap lenses and make a few colour slides while the train dropped off its passengers. Canon EOS 7D with 100mm lens.
Irish Rail 2612 makes its station stop at Rushbrook, County Cork on its way to Cobh. I had time to swap lenses and make a few colour slides while the train dropped off its passengers. Canon EOS 7D with 100mm lens.

Same train and location as above, but using my 40mm pancake lens.
Same train and location as above, but using my 40mm pancake lens.

Cobh Station.
Cobh Station.

Irish Rail display at Cobh Station. Lumix LX7.
Irish Rail display at Cobh Station. Lumix LX7.

A railfan dog gazes with enthusiasm as a 2600 series railcar roars out of Cobh on its way back to Kent Station, Cork. Canon EOS 7D with 200mm lens.
A railfan dog gazes with enthusiasm as a 2600 series railcar roars out of Cobh on its way back to Kent Station, Cork. Canon EOS 7D with 200mm lens.

Afternoon view looking compass west at Cobh Junction toward Glounthaune Station. Canon EOS 7D with 200mm lens.
Afternoon view looking compass west at Cobh Junction toward Glounthaune Station. Canon EOS 7D with 200mm lens.

Having bright sun for the duration of our photography on October 7th was a great benefit.

Thanks Ken!

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Irish Rail, Cork, September 2013

Kent Station and Cobh and Midleton Lines.

Irish Rail
Kent Station, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Last week, I traveled by train from Dublin to Cork to make photographs and visit with friends. I was traveling light and only brought two cameras, my Lumix LX3 and Canon EOS 3. In addition to some Velvia 100F, I also played around with some Fuji 400 color print film I had stored in the refrigerator.

Initially I focused my attention on Kent Station, which features a unique curved train-shed that make it one of the most interesting railway structures in Ireland. Signaling at the Cobh-end still retains a few mechanical semaphores.

Kent Station, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.
Kent Station, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

New Irish Rail logo.
New Irish Rail logo.

 

Later, I worked east making a variety of images at Glounthuane (Cobh Junction) where Cobh and Midleton lines come together. The Midleton line had been closed for decades and was only reopened for passenger service in 2009. Years earlier, I’d explored the then derelict line.

Earlier this year, I featured a series of posts on Irish Railway Record Society’s locomotive hauled Dublin-Cobh-Midleton excursion. See: Irish Railway Record Society Trip to County Cork, 20 July 2013; Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 4.

Where that visit was blessed with bright sun through out the day, on this recent trip I experienced more ordinary Irish weather.

Irish Rail signs at Glounthaune, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.
Irish Rail signs at Glounthaune, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Rail
Irish Rail 2600-series rail car at Glounthaune, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Rail
Irish Rail train to Cobh near Fota, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Rail
Irish rail train departing Midleton, Co. Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Rail
Irish Rail 2600s passing North Esk, Co. Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Here are a few views from the two cameras. Special thanks to Ken and Janet Fox and Donncha Cronin for location advice and local transportation. Also thanks to John Gunn Camera shop on Wexford Street in Dublin for color negative film processing and prints.

Cork
Kent Station, Cork. September 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Irish Rail Mark 4 at Kent Station, Cork. Exposed on Fuji 400 ISO color negative film (C41 process) using a Canon EOS 3 with 28-135 mm lens.
Irish Rail Mark 4 at Kent Station, Cork. Exposed on Fuji 400 ISO color negative film (C41 process) using a Canon EOS 3 with 28-135 mm lens.

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Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 4

 

Close-ups and Details.

Sometimes special events make for great opportunities to make detailed photos of equipment, structures and settings.

Last Saturday’s Irish Railway Record Society excursion from Dublin to Cork, Cobh and Midleton was an opportunity for visual exploration.

Check previous posts for other images of this historic trip.

Detail of class 071 diesel.
Irish Rail diesel number 073 catches the sun at Kent Station Cork on 20 July 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.

 

Driver Ken Fox works the ground at Cork.
Driver Ken Fox works the ground at Cork.

 

Kent Station, Cork.
Railway Preservation Society Ireland’s Cravens catch the sunlight at Kent Station Cork on 20 July 2013.

 

Brake cylinder on locomotive 071.
Brake cylinder on locomotive 071.

 92 60 0117071-7
Freshly painted Irish Rail locomotive 92 60 0117071-7 catches the sun at Heuston Station in Dublin. Its still just old 071 to me! Lumix LX3 photo.

Heuston Station
Irish Rail’s Rotem-built intercity rail cars arrive at Heuston Station on the morning of 20 July 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Handbrake on locomotive 071. Canon EOS 7D photo.
Handbrake on locomotive 071. Canon EOS 7D photo.

 

Heuston Station, Dublin. Lumix LX3 photo.
Heuston Station, Dublin. Lumix LX3 photo.

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Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 3

 

Classic Views of an Historic Irish Trip.

 

In previous posts I focused on the human side of Irish Railway Record Society’s Dublin-Cork excursion on 20 July 2013.

However, I also made my own share of classic views showing Saturday’s railway excursion at identifiable locations. I’ve displayed a few view here. In addition to digital image I also exposed color slides at key locations.

 

 

See posts from the last few days for more views of Irish Railway Record Society’s 20 July 2013 diesel hauled trip on Irish Rail to Cork, Cobh and Midleton.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail 071 and 073 with IRRS Special at Templemore on 20 July 2013.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail class 071 number 073 led the excursion on the Cork-Cobh leg of the trip. It is seen during a photographers stop at Rushbrooke, County Cork. The best classic views were made from a nearby road bridge. The train was well spotted for photos. Canon EOS 7D with 28-135mm lens.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail 071 catches the sun at Cobh, County Cork on 20 July 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Rail_071_Cobh_Vert_IMG_0250
A vertical three-quarter view (or near to it) of Irish Rail 071 at Cobh, County Cork on 20 July 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
At Kent Station Cork, engine 071 runs around the train and will follow to Middleton. There doesn’t appear to be anyone in my photo and who’s that shouting? oops. 😉

Kent Station, Cork
Irish Rail 073 reflects into a Mark 4 train at Kent Station in Cork on 20 July 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Operation to Midleton required a bit of shuffle owing to a lack of run around facilities. Presently this is the end of the branch. Normally the only equipment on the line are double-ended railcars. Photos of locomotive hauled trains here are highly prized and photographers vied for position to get the best views. Locomotive 073 which brought the train from Cork can be seen in this distance. Canon EOS 7D photo.

 

A bit of color: 201-class General Motors diesel number 209 (painted for the Dublin-Belfast Enterprise) on a Mark 4 set at Cork on 20 July 2013.
A bit of color: 201-class General Motors diesel number 209 (painted for the Dublin-Belfast Enterprise) on a Mark 4 set at Cork on 20 July 2013.

Irish Rail 071 catches the sun at Cobh, County Cork on 20 July 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.
Twin 071s couple on to the excursion at Kent Station Cork. The view from the Dublin-end of the shed is among the best in the city. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Irish Rail 2800s.
Irish Rail’s 2600-series railcars pause at the back of the train shed in Cork. These are typical of the trains normally assigned to Cork suburban services. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Irish Rail 086 rests with a ballast train at Lisduff as viewed on the return trip of the IRRS special.
Irish Rail 086 rests with a ballast train at Lisduff as viewed on the return trip of the IRRS special. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

 

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Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 2

More views of Irish Railway Record Society Trip to County Cork, 20 July 2013.

There’s a long history of special trains with unusual locomotives, rare events, or otherwise noteworthy occurrences of railway operations that have encouraged railway photography.

Saturday’s trip to Cork and Midleton was no exception. (see yesterday’s post).

Among the photographic events was the rare locomotive hauled consist on Cobh and Midleton Branches. The Cobh branch has been exclusively a railcar operation since the mid-2000s, while the Midleton line has only seen railcar operation since its reopening a few years ago.

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Our train pauses at Templemore for photographers on the morning of 20 July 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo. A strategically placed bit of greenery adds depth to the image. (And, yes, I have photos without it).

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Fans snap freshly painted 071 class leader at Templemore on 20 July 2013. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Enjoying the spin.
Enjoying the spin.

In time-honoured tradition, at every photo stop, photographers rushed to snap images of the train. Occasionally, an individual entranced by the fresh paint on locomotive 071 or fascinated by some other peculiarity of operation or equipment, would wander haplessly in front of a line of eager photographers. Shouts of ‘Hey!’ ‘Oy!’, ‘Down in front!’ and the like would ensue.

Especially amusing was when a particularly oblivious passenger or passerby would drift with their backs to the anxious photo line (time is precious on these outings as only a few minutes are allowed at each stop), and proceed to linger staring in wonder at the train. In such cases a diplomat would be elected to negotiate a solution.

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
‘Down in front!’

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
RPSI staff make necessary arrangements with Irish Rail staff at Kent Station Cork.

A Cobh, I was queried by a German woman as to why so many people were photographing the train. It didn’t appear in the slightest bit unusual to her. Significance is in the eye of the observer. I explained that, ‘locomotives were never operated on this line, and the locomotive that brought the train down was in fresh paint, and that the train had carried the photographers for this purpose.’ She seemed satisfied with that.

While I made plenty of images of the train, 071 and 073 and etc, I also focused on the people. From my experience, images of people surrounding the train tend to be more interesting than the train, and tend to have greater value in the end.

 

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Photographs provide clues to memories that may last a lifetime. Someday everyone and everything maybe gone, yet we can remember the thrill of the day as a result of pictures. At Cobh, two young lads get their image made with the driver of locomotive 071. Canon EOS 7D photo.

Kent Station Cork;
Kevin, a tracking the Light follower, proudly displays his model of Irish Rail’s 071 in the new livery.

 

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Photographers vie for positon at Kent Station Cork.

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Aiming for the best angle at Midleton on 20 July 2013. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Staff water the train at Kent Station, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

RPSI staff servicing the train at Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.
RPSI staff servicing the train at Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Not everyone is bothered to get every photo. Some prefer to relax and enjoy the journey. Lumix LX3 photo.

 Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail employee (and Railway Preservation Society Ireland member) Kevin Walker enjoyed the view from a Cravens window on the Irish Railway Record Society’s outing.

 Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 2
Irish Rail staff conducted the trip professionally and efficiently, keeping to schedule despite abnormally complex arrangements necessary for the trip.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Driver Ken Fox on 071 at Cork.

 Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 2
Driver Ken Fox greets passengers after arrival at Heuston Station. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
At the end of the day, Heuston, Station. Lumix LX3.

For more photos see yesterday’s post.

More to come tomorrow!

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Irish Railway Record Society Trip to County Cork, 20 July 2013

Sun Scorched Irish Extravaganza—Part 1

I traveled on the Irish Railway Record Society’s “Special Train” consisting of locomotive hauled Cravens carriages to Kent Station Cork, with side trips Cobh, and Midleton operated on 20 July 2013.

Irish Rail 071 at Heuston Station, Dublin.
Photographers crowd toward the Cork-end of the platform at Heuston to catch snaps of freshly painted 071 on the special train to Cork.

My reasons for traveling were largely to visit with friends on and about the train while enjoying a spin around Cork.

Tracking the Light followers, Noel Enright and Mark Healy at Heuston Station, Dublin on 20 July 2013.
Tracking the Light followers Noel Enright and Mark Healy at Heuston Station, Dublin on 20 July 2013.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Gerry is fellow traveler on many railway adventures. Did he tell you the story about the priest, the minister and the rabbi? Canon EOS 7D photo.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Tracking the Light reader Stephen Hirsch displays his new Lumix camera. Lumix LX3 photo.

The special was unusual. The carriages were Railway Preservation Society’s former Irish Rail Cravens. It’s been nearly seven years since the old Cravens were withdrawn from regular service, thus ending Irish Rail’s routine use of traditional steam heated stock.

More usual was operation of a pair of Irish Rail’s General Motors-built class 071 diesel-electric locomotives. In the last few years, most Irish Rail trains have been operated with various classes of self-propelled rail cars. The exceptions being Dublin-Cork push-pull trains and the Dublin-Belfast Enterprise, both of which routinely call for class 201 diesels.

Thus, the 071 diesels have been largely relegated to freight and per-way (maintenance) service. The days of 071s roaring in ‘run 8’ (maximum throttle) down the Cork mainline hauling Mark II, Mark III or Cravens carriages in regular service is a memory.

Pairs of 071s were never common and multiple working of 071 virtually unknown (although it has been known to have occurred, at least once). So the ability to travel behind a pair of 071s was indeed very unusual. On Saturday’s trip only one of the locomotives was working at a time.

Also, this trip featured freshly painted 071-class leader, now officially known as ’92 60 0117071-7′ in an effort to comply with European common numbering. It’s still just engine 071 to the rest of us.

So far as I know, this was the first scheduled passenger service with an 071 in Irish Rail’s new gray and yellow livery. While, I’d previously photographed 077 (pardon me for not using its full European number) in this paint, this was my first opportunity to make photographs of 071 in gray.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Railway Record Society special on 20 July 2013 pauses at Rushbrooke, Co. Cork on its way to Cobh. Irish Rail 073 leads a former British Rail steam heat van and Cravens carriages. Canon 7D photo.

Cobh (pronounced 'Cove') was the last port of call for the Titanic. Canon 7D Photo.
Cobh (pronounced ‘Cove’) was the last port of call for the Titanic. Canon 7D Photo.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Locomotive 071 couples to the excursion at Cobh. The train had been brought from Kent Station Cork by 073. Lumix LX3 photo.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Enthusiasts grab photos of locomotive 073 at Kent Station in Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
During an engine change friends chat on the platform at Kent Station in Cork, 20 July 2013.

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail driver Ken Fox at Kent Station, Cork. Lumix LX3 photo.

I was impressed with the time keeping. I enjoyed the company on board the train and on the platforms. All of Irish Rail’s and IRRS staff performed admirably, efficiently, and safely. On the trips to Cobh and Midleton, and especially on the return run to Dublin, driver Ken Fox showed exceptional professionalism and skill of operation.

Yet, what impressed me the most, and by far the most unusual aspect of the trip, was they call here ‘wall to wall sun’. Although, I’m told there’s been a spell of good weather in Ireland, I cannot recall the last time I’ve taken an entirely cloud free railway trip in Ireland!

More to come in future posts . . .

 

Irish Railway Record Society special, 20 July 2013.
Irish Rail 071 at Midlton County Cork. First grey 071 at Midleton? Comments anybody? Lumix LX3 photo.

 

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