Tag Archives: Drogheda

Enterprising the Boyne or BIG BRIDGE tiny train.

Irish Rail’s lofty Boyne bridge spanning the river and valley of the historic Boyne at Drogheda poses a visual conundrum.

This prominent span rises high above Drogheda. It is a very impressive bridge.

But it’s difficult to adequately picture a train on it. Feature the bridge; the train is lost. Feature the train; the bridge gets cropped.

Look up at the bridge; and the train is marginalized.

Stand back to take in the whole span of the bridge and the train becomes insignificant.

Place the train at the center of the bridge and it become lost in the iron work.

Complicating matters, the only regularly scheduled trains with locomotives are the cross-border Belfast-Dublin Enterpriseservices, and on these train the locomotives always face north.

Last Sunday, I made these views of up and down Enterpriseconsists at Drogheda.

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Steam at Drogheda—Sunday, 16 September 2018; Five Digital Photos.

Working with two digital cameras, I made these images at Irish Rail’s Drogheda Station. This is a classic Great Northern Railway (Ireland) railway station with a curved platform, antique brick buildings and elegant old-school platform canopies.

But it also features more modern elements too, such as palisade fencing and a diesel railcar depot and wash.

Is it honest to exclude the modern elements and just focus on the antique? Or is it better to allow for mix of new and old? After all the photos were made digitally in 2018, not on film in the days of yore.

RPSI’s Cravens carriages are paused on the platform at Drogheda. How do you feel about the orange safety vests and modern signage?
Telephoto view looking toward Dublin from the footbridge.
There’s a vintage signal display at Drogheda station on the platform.
Detail of engine number 4. So how about the Nike footwear at the top of the image?
Drogheda signal cabin lacks the classic charm of its Victorian ancestors, but it is part of the modern scene, so there it is!

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Telephoto versus Wide angle: Picturing Irish Rail’s Tara Mines Run at Drogheda.

A few days ago, my daily Tracking the Light post featured a long distance telephoto view of Irish Rail’s Tara Mines zinc ore train crossing the Malahide causeway.

See: Long View: Tara Mines Zinc Ore Train at Malahide. 

In that photo the train is relatively small in a big scene.

Three days later, David Hegarty and I were again out along the old Great Northern line, this time at Drogheda, to photograph the Tara Mines on the move.

In contrast to the distant view in the earlier posting, the photographs displayed here  focus tightly on the locomotive and train using more classic three-quarter angle.

In the top photograph, I used my FujiFilm XT1 with a 90mm fixed telephoto for a tight compressed view (what some photographers might term a ‘telewedgie’).

While in bottom photograph I used my Lumix LX7 with zoom lens set with a wide-angle perspective that approximates the angle of view offered by a 35mm focal length lens on a traditional 35mm film camera.

Exposed using a FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm fixed telephoto lens. Notice the crossovers located on  curved track.
Lumix LX7 wide view.

I prefer the telephoto view for overall appeal; this handles the soft lighting conditions more satisfactorily, focuses more closely on the locomotive and train, minimizes bland elements of the scene such as the ballast and white sky, and offers a high impact image of the train in motion. Also it helps emphasize the trackage arrangement with crossovers between the up and down lines.

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Tracking the Light features Irish Rail 29000s at Drogheda in five photos.

Only see one photo? That’s because you are not viewing this post on Tracking the Light (Hint: click the link).

Irish Rail maintains its 29000-series diesel railcars (built by CAF) at its Drogheda Depot.

Back in Janaury 2003 I photographed the very first of these trains being lifted out of the boat at Dublin port. (Thanks to the late Norman McAdams who had encouraged me to  be dockside to make photos for the Irish Railway Record Society Journal).

I was reminded of that event while crossing the now disused trackage (half paved over) by the old Point Depot along the north Liffey Quays near where I made my photos.

These images were exposed last week at Drogheda using my digital cameras.

Exposed using my Lumix LX7. Notice Irish Rail’s Tara Mines train at the upper left.
Irish Rail 29000s by the dozen! FujiFilm XT1 photo.
Lumix LX7 photo looking toward Dublin.
Lumix LX7 photo.
FujiFilm XT1 photo.

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Irish Hotspot: Drogheda—16 photos

On August 10, 2015, David Hegarty and I visited Drogheda, where Irish Rail’s Navan Branch meets the Northern Line.

It was our second visit in two days.

In recent years, I’d been dismissive of the Northern Line as being bland. But, I’ve seen the error of my ways.

In just a couple hours we were treated to a steady parade of trains, and this offered just about the best variety of equipment as anyone can expect to see in modern day Ireland.

The highlight of the day was the arrival of the weed-spraying train, which needed to run around, and the propel back to access the branch.

Shortly after we arrived, a laden Tara mines train pulled into view at the end of the branch. The electric DART cars were at the depot for servicing.
Shortly after we arrived, a laden Tara mines train pulled into view at the end of the branch. The electric DART cars were at the depot for servicing.
29000-series railcars take the switch for platform 3.
29000-series railcars take the switch for platform 3.
Hooray! The weed-spraying train as arrived from Dundalk.
Hooray! The weed-spraying train as arrived from Dundalk.
Engine 074 has cutoff and will run around its train in preparation for a run to Navan on the branch.
Engine 074 has cutoff and will run around its train in preparation for a run to Navan on the branch.
A Dublin-bound set of 29000 railcars in the new livery has just departed the station.
A Dublin-bound set of 29000 railcars in the new livery has just departed the station.
The sun came out as the weed-spraying train reversed.
The sun came out as the weed-spraying train reversed.
Irish Rail 233 leads the down Enterprise toward Belfast.
Irish Rail 233 leads the down Enterprise toward Belfast. The weedsprayer waits to crossover.
The chevrons on the front of 074 have been a trademark of the weedspraying train for decades.
The chevrons on the front of 074 have been a trademark of the weedspraying train for decades.
The sprayer is doing its thing as it heads toward Navan.
The sprayer is doing its thing as it heads toward Navan.
Fresh bit of sun on the railcar depot.
Fresh bit of sun on the railcar depot.
Eventually that Tara train will have to move.
Eventually that Tara train will have to move.

Our vantage point was the lightly travel road bridge south of the railway station. During our visit there were more dogs across the bridge than cars.

Drogheda is nicely oriented for sun-lit photography through out most of the day. This is the location of a railcar depot (maintenance facility), so in addition to mainline moves, there was considerable activity at the depot, which include the washing of trains.

As with many busy places, the action seemed to come in waves.

Watching the railcars get washed provided a bit of entertainment.
Watching the railcars get washed provided a bit of entertainment.
I like the new green livery. What do you think?
I like the new green livery. What do you think?
More fresh green 29000s on the move.
More fresh green 29000s on the move.
Finally! The sounds of an EMD 645 engine, and here's the laden Tara mines train on the move. It carries zinc ore to Dublin port.
Finally! The sounds of an EMD 645 engine, and here’s the laden Tara mines train on the move. It carries zinc ore to Dublin port.
Some NIR CAF-built 3001 series railcars are on their way back to Belfast.
Some NIR CAF-built 3001 series railcars are on their way back to Belfast.

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15 Steam Photographs: RPSI trip to Drogheda and Dundalk on August 9, 2015.

I kept the cameras busy yesterday. I’ve altered the way I process my files. Rather than work from camera-shaped Jpgs, instead I’ve presented camera RAW files. With a few I applied a bit of contrast/exposure adjustment, but the others have just been scaled for internet presentation.

I exposed more than 500 images and haven’t, as of yet, had adequate time to digest this photographically intense experience.

Do you have any favorites among these photos?

RPSI_staff_DSCF4478

Upload near Near Mosney.
Uproad near Near Mosney.

RPSI_train_trailing_view_uproad_at_Mosney_DSCF4673

Downroad near Mosney.
Downroad near Mosney.
Dundalk.
Dundalk.
Tea!
Tea!

Signal_Drogheda_DSCF4504

Down Enterprise at Drogheda.
Down Enterprise at Drogheda.
Loco needs water, son.
Loco needs water, son.
Clock at Dundalk.
Clock at Dundalk.

RSPI_No4_LE_at_Drogheda_DSCF4719

Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.
Departing Drogheda; FujiFilm X-T1 photo.

RPSI_4_at_Drogheda_trailing_DSCF4458

RPSI_herald_DSCF4642Tracking the Light posts new material daily!

See: http://steamtrainsireland.com

TRACKING The LIGHT EXTRA: RPSI Steam Special to Drogheda and Dundalk.

Today, Sunday 9 August 2015, the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland in cooperation with Irish Rail operated a steam special from Dublin’s Connolly Station to Drogheda and Dundalk with locomotive number 4.

Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported at a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.
Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported as a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.
Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported at a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.
Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported as a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.

This was my first opportunity to photograph this classic locomotive in more than four years. Special thanks to everyone at the RPSI and Irish Rail who made today’s trips a success.

Stay tuned for more photos tomorrow!

Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported as a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.
Exposed with a FujiFilm X-T1; RAW File exported as a Jpg using Adobe Lightroom.

RPSI_carriage_at_Drogheda_DSCF4462

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For more information on the RPSI see: http://steamtrainsireland.com