Tag Archives: Irish Rail

Shows Irish Rail

Westport, County Mayo: Contrasts of Modern train in a Traditional Station—Three photos.


13 April 2019: during RPSI’s The West Awakerail tour, I made these views from the platform at Westport station of an Irish Rail ICR.

I like the contrast between the modern Rotem-built diesel railcar and the traditional station setting.

Would these photos have been better if the sun was shinning brightly? (Keep in mind, I was on the northeast side of the line in the late afternoon).

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Busy Time on the Branch—Views from Dublin’s Conyngham Road.

On Monday afternoon, 15 April 2019, I made this sequence of photos from Dublin’s Conyngham Road.

In just a few minutes I photographed four trains passing over the Branch that connects Islandbridge Junction with lines to Connolly Station/North Wall yards.

Exposed using my Lumix LX7; files adjusted for colour balance and contrast using Lightroom.

At 1452 (2:52pm a Hazelhatch-Grand Canal Docks ICR passed; note the signal with feather at left).

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Portraits and Train Views from RPSI’s 13 April 2019 Tour.


During the course of yesterday’s Railway Preservation Society of Ireland The West Awakerail tour to County Mayo I exposed dozens of portraits of the crew, passengers and observers, along with views of the train from many angles.

This selection was exposed using my FujiFilm XT1 digital camera.

Thanks to Irish Rail and the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland for a well-planned rail excursion!

For more about the RPSI click the link below:

https://www.steamtrainsireland.com

Irish Rail 074 delivers the RPSI train to Connolly Station.
Connolly Station.

Photographers at Athlone.


Castlerea.


Ballyhaunis.

Claremorris.

Claremorris.

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Dusk at Dublin’s North Wall—April 2019.

Wednesday evening, 10 April 2019, I paid a visit to Dublin’s North Wall freight yard with fellow photographer Jay Monaghan.

I made this view looking toward the old Granaries sidings and beyond to Dublin Port and the Poolbeg Power Plant.

Exposed handheld using a FujiFilm XT1 with f2.0 90mm prime telephoto, ISO set at 6400.

Brian Solomon is Traveling today and Tracking the Light is posting on ‘auto pilot’.

Exposed handheld using a FujiFilm XT1 with f2.0 90mm prime telephoto, ISO set at 6400.

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Tracking the Light: Diversity within a Niche.


In my quest to display transport and railway images while disseminating information on technique, location choice, lighting and how I use photographic equipment, I’ve aimed to cover a diverse range of railway subjects.

These include: freight and passenger; heavy rail and transit; views across North America, Ireland and many other nations; photos by day, by night and in dusk and in twilight; rural, urban and suburban settings; above ground and below; track gauges broad, standard and narrow; preserved railways and modern for-profit carriers; historic and contemporary subjects; film and digital; black & white and colour; wide angle and telephoto; model trains and prototype; views with scenery, with structures, with people; photos in all weather; sun over the shoulder, sun in the face, and sun behind the cloud. Signals, bridges, stations, sheds, and etc; Common places and obscure locations.

Also myriad associated forms of transport including canals, highways and in the skies; active lines and those lifted.

Some images represent a degree of perfection; most are works in progress; a few present examples of failure or missed opportunity.

CN freight in the snow at Lomira, Wisconsin.

SNCB passenger trains at Ottignies, Belgium on a cloudy morning.

Amador Central backlit in the Sierra foothills in March 1997.



Broadstone Station with LUAS tram, Dublin.

SEPTA Silverliner IVs at Media, Pennsylvania at dusk.

Model train at speed at the Amherst Railway Society train show in West Springfield, Massachusetts.

Portuguese Railways Alfa Pendolino near Santarem on a cloudy evening.

Black & white photo made on film at Bridgeport, Connecticut in December 1986.

Irish Rail IWT Liner at North Wall Yard, Dublin. Portrait view.

Irish Rail 29000 train interior.

Bessemer & Lake Erie at Wallace Junction on the evening of July 22, 1988, exposed with flash on Kodachrome using a Leica M2.

White River Junction, Vermont: Boston & Maine 4-4-0 494 on display.

Amiens Street, Dublin in the fog.

Bord na Mona rail section near Lanesborough, County Longford, Ireland.

Duplainville, Wisconsin.

Bord na Mona empties near Lanesborough, County Longford, Ireland.




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Kildare; Light; Action!


Irish Rail diesel trains on the move.

On Saturday (6 April 2019), Paul Maguire, Jay Monaghan and I were in position at the road bridge west of Kildare Station on Irish Rail’s Dublin-Cork mainline.

The elusive steel train was holding on the middle road waiting to cross over, while a Mark 4 set from Cork weaved through the loop on its way to Dublin’s Heuston Station.

I made this view using my FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm fixed telephoto.

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Irish Rail ICRs at Kildare.

A few views from Saturday morning (6 April 2019) at Kildare on Irish Rail’s Dublin-Cork mainline.

I’d traveled down with fellow photographers Paul Maguire and Jay Monaghan.

We were after the elusive steel train from Waterford, and entertained our wait with the passage of regularly scheduled passenger trains.

I made these views using my FujiFilm XT1 .

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A set of ROTEM-built InterCity Railcars (ICRs) race up road at Kildare. The train was traveling in the 90-100 mph range so I used 1/1000th of a second to stop the action.

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Spring in Dublin: Grand Canal Docks Railcar at Conyngham Road.

Minutes ago (on 4 April 2019) I made this view from Conyngham Road in Dublin as an ICR working a Grand Canal Docks-Hazelhatch service exited the Phoenix Park Tunnel and crossed the lattice bridge over the River Liffey.

Spring is in bloom and the trees are just getting their leaves, yet it is freezing outside with a harsh nip in the wind.

Exposed using my Lumix LX7; RAW file imported into Lightroom for colour and contrast adjustments.

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Irish Rail’s ICR works the up-Sligo at Clonsilla—March 2019.

Tracking the Light is on ‘auto pilot’ while Brian is traveling.

Never pass up a perfect sunny photograph. That’s been my policy for a very long time and its one that pays off.

There’s nothing special about an Irish Rail Rotem-built InterCity Railcar (ICR) on the Sligo Line.

And 20 years ago there was nothing special about a General Motors 071 diesel-electric with Mark 2 carriages on the same run. Photos like this one will age well. Someday some young photographer will wish that he/she was at Clonsilla to capture a scene like this one.

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April First Tip; Oops! Don’t you hate when this happens.

Tracking the Light is on ‘auto pilot’ while Brian is traveling.

Not every photo works as planned.

Sometimes it takes too long to get the camera organized.

Sometimes we should be better prepared before the train comes into view!

Not my best effort with the Lumix!

Here’s a bad view of Irish Rail 082.

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Trains along the Royal Canal in Drumcondra.


This week Tracking the Light is on ‘auto pilot’ while Brian is traveling.

On 23 March 2019, I set up in Drumcondra along the Royal Canal on Dublin’s north side to photograph trains working the Newcomen Line.

Normally the visually intriguing Newcomen line trackage is only lightly used during midday with most moves scheduled for weekday rush hours.

Instead, Irish Rail typically routes trains on the parallel double-track line via Drumcondra Station; however on the weekend of 23-24 March 2019 works on that line resulted in diversions to the Newcomen Line.

I made these views using my FujiFilm XT1 digital camera.

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Elusive ‘Raccoon’ leads the RPSI Cravens Transfer at the Gullet.

I made this photo on the morning of 18 March 2019 using my FujiFilm XT1.

I’ll admit that if you’re not closely familiar with Irish Rail’s Dublin operations my title to today’s Tracking the Light post might seem cryptic.

Two of the Irish Rail 201 class General Motors diesels, 231 and 233, are painted in a minimalist silver, black and yellow livery. These are colloquially known in the enthusiast community as ‘raccoons’ (or ‘badgers’).

Engine number 233 has been shy lately and rarely seen out on the mainline.

RPSI stands for the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland.

RPSI owns an historic set of Cravens-built passenger carriages.

These are stored/maintained at Irish Rail’s Inchicore works (repair shops), and when they are required for an excursion, Irish Rail makes a transfer run across Dublin to deliver them to Connolly station for boarding.

The graded three-track line from Islandbridge Junction to Inchicore runs through a cutting along Con Colbert Road known as ‘the Gullet’.

While I’ve covered most of this previously, I figure it doesn’t hurt to review the esoteric every so often to avoid confusion.

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Irish Rail Sperry at Dublin’s North Wall

Tracking the Light is on auto-pilot while Brian is traveling.

Last week I exposed this view of Irish Rail’s Tara Mines train alongside the Sperry rail defect detection train at the North Wall yards in Dublin.

I was on a image-making wander with fellow photographers Mark Healy and Paul Maguire.

Exposed using my FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm prime telephoto.

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Irish Rail’s Grand Canal Docks at Night and the Sperry Train.


—Some nocturnal views of Dublin suburban operations—

Working in the gloom of night has its challenges and benefits.

It’s especially challenging when the camera I intended to make film photos was suffering from a flat battery, again (so I thought).

One of my Nikon F3s was again showing signs of no electricity. Changing out the batteries on an railcar, I began to suspect something else . . .

Anyway, last week Paul Maguire, Jay Monaghan and I arrived at Pearse Station as a potential location to picture Irish Rail’s Sperry train that was making its run to Bray to inspect rail conditions.

We decided to try the next station down the line, and traveled on a DART electric train to Grand Canal Docks. With my Nikon dead in the water, I opted to work with my Lumix LX7 and FujiFilm digital cameras instead. This changed my perspective as I’d hope to make black & white film photos.

Grand Canal Docks viewed from Irish Rail’s station of the same name. Lumix LX7 photo.
DART at Grand Canal Docks. Lumix LX7 photo.
Irish Rail 29000 series CAF-built diesel train. Lumix LX7 photo.
A Howth-bound DART at Grand Canal Docks, FujiFilm XT1 photo.
Irish Rail 086 leads the Sperry detection train at Grand Canal docks. FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm f2.0 prime telephoto.

As we waited on the platforms for the Sperry train. I made photos of the DART and suburban diesel railcars, which dominate operations on this route.

Diesel haulage is the attraction of the elusive Sperry train; and on this evening Irish Rail 086 did the honors.

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Oh yeah, about the F3T’s battery problem. Later, I discovered that the plastic cartridge that holds the batteries appeared to have developed a short. Luckily, I have a spare F3 and swapped out the cartridge solving this difficulty.

Freight in the Mist; Irish Rail 082 Leads Containers in Co. Roscommon.

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Irish Rail’s old Midland Great Western line to Westport follows a rock and roll profile as it works its way across the Midlands.

This is one of Ireland’s busiest freight routes which handles both container and timber traffic.

On misty March afternoon we waited at quiet overpass at Slieve located north of the River Suck (yes, that’s its name) in rural county Roscommon railway-west of the old station at Donamon.

I’d traveled from Dublin with brothers Paul and Jay Monaghan, I navigated and helped locate this photo location.

The roar of Irish 082 could be heard for miles before it came into view leading the down IWT Liner that runs between Dublin and Ballina Co. Mayo.

I exposed this view on the south side of the line using my FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm prime telephoto.

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Irish Rail: Thurles, County Tipperary at Night.


Two views exposed with my Lumix LX7 of a Rotem ICR (InterCity Railcar) running from Dublin to Cork that had paused at Thurles for its first station stop since departing Heuston Station.

Departing Thurles for Kent Station, Cork. Trailing view.

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Irish Rail 071s at Islandbridge Junction—Two Photos on 14 March 2019.


A little while ago I made this pair of photos at Islandbridge Junction in Dublin.

In a repeat of a few weeks back clouds were racing across the sky making for wild changes in the quality of light from moment to moment.

First up was today’s (14 March 2019) IWT Liner from Dublin’s North Wall to Ballina, County Mayo. This had 073 in retro orange. A few minutes later, Irish Rail 080 came around with an empty LWR (Long welded rail train).

The clouds foiled my first effort. But breaks in the cloud allowed for respectable telephoto view of the LWR. On the downside, my 50mm colour slide of same won’t be as impressive as the clouds quickly dampened the light again.

Such are the challenges of photographing moving trains in Ireland.

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Irish Rail’s Elusive Spoil Train.


(If your not on Tracking the Light, be sure to click the Link to get the BIG picture.)

In the realms of the rarely seen on the move, Irish Rail’s bogie spoil train is one of the rarest.

By luck I’d spotted this train running toward Dublin’s North Wall on Wednesday 6 March 2019. And as it happened, the crew was taking train to the yard to swap one set for another.

Patience on my part yielded this view of the train returning from the North Wall. As seen from my standard location at Islandbridge Junction in Dublin.

The bottom line: it helps to live near the tracks, but it also helps to sit tight when something unusual and unscheduled is on the prowl.

Exposed digitally using a FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm prime telephoto.


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Irish Rail Quad Track at Lucan South‑Sun, Cloud and Trains!


Irish Rail makes good use of its quad track on the Cork Line in southwest suburban Dublin. Fast Intercity trains overtake slower moving all-stops passenger trains and the occasional freight.

The other day Colm O’Callaghan and I spent sometime documenting the action.

The sky was a tapestry of clouds with spells bright blue sky. In other words a typical Irish afternoon.

I made these views with my FujiFilm XT1 and 27mm pancake lens. Since top speed for passenger trains is 100 mph/160 kmph, I set the camera to 1/1000 second to freeze the action.

In addition to the digital photos I made a few select views on Fujichrome Provia with my old Nikon N90S and 135mm lens. Those remain in the camera.

Irish Rail ICRs work the Dublin-Westport train on the ‘down slow’ line.

A few minutes later a similar consist races by on the ‘down fast’ line. (Outside tracks are designated ‘fast’, inside tracks ‘slow’. Signaling is set up for directional running.

It was overcast when Irish Rail 218 raced by with a Mark4 set for Kent Station, Cork.

Speaking of Cork, I was on the phone to a Tracking the Light reader there when this ICR set with the new ‘blue doors’ worked up-road on the ‘up-slow’ (Up is toward Dublin; Down is away from Dublin). Previously I’ve reported on the change to Irish Rail’s ICRs with the addition of blue doors in place of green. I described these as ‘purple’ (they still look purple to me, but I’ve been informed the color is ‘blue’.)

Trailing view of a Cork-Dublin train on the ‘Up fas’ line.’ Nice burst of sunlight!
IWT Liner
Irish Rail 088 leads K803 (Ballina to Dublin North Wall IWT Liner) on the ‘Up Slow Line’.

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Irish Rail Old Cabra Road Dublin.


Here’s a few black & white views exposed last week on Kodak Tri-X of Irish Rail’s branch from Islandbridge Junction to the North Wall/Connolly.

Recently, Irish Rail has expanded service on the Grand Canal Docks—Hazel Hatch/Newbridge run and now trains run at least hourly throughout the day.

Following a Grand Canal Docks bound passenger train was the daily Up IWT Liner (Ballina to North Wall, Dublin).

Since these trains were coming out of the relatively harsh midday sun, I opted to work with black & white film, which makes the most of the contrast and allows me to control shadow and highlight detail to a greater degree than with my digital cameras, while giving the images a period look.

Irish Rail 234 with Up IWT Liner (Ballina to North Wall, Dublin) at Old Cabra Road in Dublin

To maximize tonality and detail from the negatives I employed a ‘split process’ using two developers.

First I use a very weak solution of Kodak HC110 mixed 1 to 250 to water. To intensify the detail in shadows while avoiding over processing highlight areas, I keep the developer temperature comparatively high (73F) and allow it to work to exhaustion. My second developer is Ilford ID mixed 1-1 for 6 minutes 45 seconds with one minute agitation intervals. Then stop; fix 1, fix 2, rinse for 3 minutes, hypoclear, then a series of final washes. Dry and scan.

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Heuston Sunset—February 2019.


On Tuesday, 26 February 2019, working with my FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm Fujinon telephoto, I made these digital sunset views from the windows of the Irish Railway Record Society near Dublin’s Heuston Station.

This evening 28 February 2019 at 730pm at these same IRRS premises, I’ll be presenting my traditional slide program General Motors Diesels in North America. Visitors are welcome!

JPG adjusted and produced from Fuji camera RAW file using Lightroom.
Camera JPG scaled for internet presentation without adjustment.

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Brian’s Morning View at Islandbridge: An Irish Rail ICR with Purple Doors?

About a week ago an Irish Rail ICR rolled past me. These parade by at such regularity that I often pay them little notice. Nice to travel on, but common.

Hey, wait . . . did that one have purple doors? (Since delivery in 2007-2008, these have been forest green).

It did. And I failed to even lift the camera to make a photo.

Shame on me.

So, the other day in nice light when an ICR approached, I was ready. And this one too had the purple doors.

Lumix LX7 photo.

I wasn’t out for the ICR, but rather for the down IWT liner (container train to Ballina, County Mayo) that was running late. Actually, I was on my way to buy batteries for my Nikon F3, which had failed the day before. The stop at Islandbridge Junction was a sideshow.

Lumix LX7 photo.

Reminder: Tomorrow night (28 Feb 2019 at 730pm) at the Irish Railway Record Society in Dublin, I will present my slide show on General Motors Diesels in the USA. The talk is open to the public. The IRRS Dublin premises is in an old brick and stone building along the Liffey near Heuston Station opposite the entrance to the public car park.

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Kildare Summer 1999.



In the summer of 1999, I was standing on the footbridge at Kildare station where I focused on Irish Rail 225 leading Mark3 carriages as it approached at speed.

My first Nikon N90S was loaded with Ilford HP5 and fitted with an old Tokina 400mm fixed focal length telephoto.

The train was common; my photograph was unusual. Working with extreme telephoto compression, I’ve framed the train in the arch of road-bridge, which has the effect of accentuating the pattern of the crossovers east of the bridge.

I recall the piercing Doppler squashed screech of 225’s horn as it neared the platforms, warning passengers to stand back.

The memory of that sound and the following rush of air as the train raced past puts me back in that place in time nearly 20 years gone. I know too well how I was feeling at the time. Strange how one photograph of a train can summon such memories and feelings.

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Two Liners; Two Locos; Two Liveries: One Day.


Yesterday, 20 February 2019, Irish Rail operated two Ballina-Dublin IWT Liners—container trains.

The first, running as K801, had the 071 class leader in the as-built heritage-livery.

I photographed this train at Memorial road in Dublin.

The second, running about two hours behind the first, had freshly painted Irish Rail 074 (in the current gray and yellow). I caught this one from above the entrance to Dublin’s Phoenix Park Tunnel off the Conyngham Road.

In both instances, I worked with my FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm Fujinon telephoto lens.

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Irish Rail at Portlaoise—Two Night Views.


The other evening I made these two night photographs using my Lumix LX7 at Irish Rail’s station in Portlaoise.

Night photography involves compromises. My techniques sometimes seem counter intuitive.

In this situation, I was traveling light. To optimize the amount of information captured, I set the ISO to 200 and steadied the camera on available surfaces to minimize the effects of camera shake.

After exposure, working with Camera RAW files in Lightroom, I made various adjustments to shadows, highlights and over all contrast as a means of optimizing of the appearance of the final images.

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Irish Rail 217 River Flesk—A Lesson in Night Photography.


The other evening I made a few handheld photos of Irish Rail class 201 diesel number 217 River Fleskat Dublin’s Heuston Station.

217 was working a Mark4 set on the 2100 schedule to Cork.

There are myriad approaches to night photography. In this instance, I worked with my Lumix LX7 without a tripod.

I’m fortunate because I have an unusually steady hand. The Lumix further aids my efforts because it has image stabilization.

I set the camera to ISO 200, and working in ‘A’ (aperture priority) I manually set the lens aperture to its widest opening, which in this case is f1.8. The wider the aperture, the more light passes through the lens to reach the sensor, so having a ‘fast’ lens (one with a small maximum aperture number, such as my f1.8 lens) is a huge benefit.

This set up allowed me work with a 1/10 of second shutter speed, which is adequate speed for a static photograph.

Lumix LX7 photo f1.8 at 1/10th second hand-held, ISO 200, auto white balance. JPG adjusted from a camera RAW file using Lightroom.


Lumix LX7 photo f1.8 at 1/10th second hand-held, auto white balance

If I had been using my FujiFilm XT1 with the kit zoom lens, my widest aperture would have been about f4.5, which is nearly two full stops slower than f1.8, which means at ISO200, I’d require about ½ second exposure to obtain a comparable result, which is too slow for a sharp handheld image in most instances.

Another way of approaching this would be raise the ISO. So with the FujiFilm set up just described, I could increase the ISO setting to 800, which would boost the effective sensitivity of the sensor by two stops (bringing me back up to 1/10thof a second using f4.5). However, this would also boost the noise level and reduce sharpness.

Back in the old days, I would have used Kodachrome, and that would have required a tripod, and probably some filters to colour-correct for the artificial light. Today, digital cameras when set to ‘auto white balance’ do an admirable job of balancing the colour for fluorescent, sodium vapor and other forms of artificial light that tend to tint an image.

Normally for night work with the Lumix, I’d dial in a 1/3 over exposure compensation (+ 1/3 on the exposure compensation dial) however in this situation the relatively bright night sky where low cloud was illuminated by lots of artificial light combined with the silver body of the locomotive and bright platform lighting, obviated the need for boosting the exposure by 1/3 of a stop.

However, I did make some very subtle changes in post processing to help visually separate the roof of the locomotive from the sky.

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Two Trains on the Move at Islandbridge Junction!


Monday, 11 February 2019 was bright and sunny in Dublin.

Although I was only just back across the Atlantic, I made use of the morning when I’d heard that Irish Rail 073 in heritage orange paint was working the down IWT Liner (container train operated from Dublin’s North Wall to Ballina, Co. Mayo).

As this exited Dublin’s Phoenix Park Tunnel approaching Islandbridge Junction, an Irish Rail ICR working the Hazelhatch-Grand Canal Docks service came the other way.

I hadn’t anticipated a ‘rolling meet’, but as luck had it I got two trains for the price of one.

This sequence of photos was exposed using my FujiFilm XT1 digital camera with 27mm pancake lens.

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Irish Rail’s Sligo Timber at Islandbridge.


Recently discussions of Irish Rail’s Sligo Timber have led me to ask, ‘When did this traffic end?’

Sometimes my memory offers a clear picture of the past, in other situations it is fuzzy and lacking desired detail. This is among the reasons I try to apply detailed labels and captions to my photographs near the time of exposure.

I recall the Sligo timber’s revival in Spring 2002, and my many opportunities to photograph timber trains on the Sligo Line and in around Dublin in the years that followed, but I’m unable to remember when the last train operated.

On guessing, I thought 2007 or 2008 was pretty close. So on reviewing my photo files, I was a bit surprised to find this photograph dated 21 May 2009.

Photo by Brian Solomon on 21 May 2009.

I exposed this view on Fujichrome from my regular spot at Islandbridge Junction, which shows Irish Rail 232 in the modern green livery leading a timber out of the Phoenix Park Tunnel. The construction-progress of the apartments at left helps me confirm the date of the photo.

So, when was the final movement of timber by rail from Sligo? I must have been away.

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Sugar Beet on the Move, October 2005.


The sun peeks through a laden sky after an Autumnal shower as Irish Rail V250, a sugar beet train from Wellingtonbridge to Mallow rolls along the Cork main at Shinanagh near Buttevant.

I exposed this view on Fujichrome Velvia100 using a wideangle lens.

My intent was to capture the dramatic light and textured sky.

This was to be Irish Rail’s final sugar beet season. The traffic ended forever in January 2006.

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Steam Trip at Killucan—April 2003.

Railway Preservation Society of Ireland engine No.4 approaches Killucan Cabin in the loop, as Driver D. Renehan leans out to deliver the train staff.

I made this view on Fujichrome Sensia slide film using my Nikon in April 2003.

At that point Killucan Cabin was still open as a block post and worked the level crossing gates (seen at right).

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Irish Rail Bubble Cement 26 May 2005.


It was a bright overcast afternoon on 26 May 2005, when I photographed Irish Rail 077 leading an empty bubble cement train from Conyngham Road in Dublin looking toward platform 10 at Heuston Station.

I made this photo on Fujichrome slide film using my Nikon F3 with 180mm Nikkor ‘prime’ telephoto lens.

The telephoto compression has the effect of making the distant mountains seem closer while foreshortening the appearance of the cement train, which makes the individual four-wheel cement wagons seem even shorter than they were.

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Dublin’s DART: Twenty Years Ago.


Here’s a late 1990s view on Amiens Street in Dublin in front of Connolly Station.

The 1980s-era DART electric suburban train isn’t remarkable; except for a nominal change of paint and end lights, these cars look much the same today.

However, so much else has changed, which makes the photo look dated, and fascinating now.

I exposed this Fujichrome colour slide using my Nikon F3 with 135mm lens, probably in the Spring of 1998, and no later than Spring 1999. At the time of exposure, the scene seemed so unremarkable, I didn’t bother to put a date on the slide mount.

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DART Impressions—1998.


In my first year photographing in Ireland, I made many photographs of Irish Rail’s electric suburban service that is branded as ‘DART’ for ‘Dublin Area Rapid Transit’.

This is a selection of four color slides exposed back in 1998.

Connolly Station 1998.

Howth.

Howth.

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Dublin—Almost 20 Years Ago.

Looking East on Wellington Quay toward the Loop Line Bridge and Dublin’s Custom House.

In March 1999, I exposed this portrait view from a rooftop on Wellington Quay. Entrance to the building was just opposite ‘The Temple Bar’.

Working with an N90S with a Tokina 400mm lens, I quickly composed this frame as Irish Rail’s evening ‘down Rosslare’ rolled across the Loop Line bridge behind an EMD-built 071 class diesel.

Last week, I scanned this Fujichrome Sensia II colour slide on using a Nikon Super Coolscan5000 scanner.

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Mark3s, Semaphores and a Crow: Irish Rail at Killarney 14 Years Ago


On this day, 10 January 2005, I exposed this Fujichrome Sensia II slide of an Irish Rail train from Tralee at Killarney, County Kerry.

This was shortly before Mini-CTC resignalling would close the cabin and remove all the classic mechanical signaling.

At the time 201 diesels and Mark3 carriages were the norm and not noteworthy; but they seem pretty cool today.

I like the crow perched on the semaphore blade.

Nikon F3 with 180mm Nikkor telephoto, metered manually with a handheld external meter.

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Irish Rail 233

My penultimate post for 2018 that features Ireland’s 201-class diesels focuses on locomotive number 233—second to last in the series (201-234).

In recent times this has worn the minimalist ‘raccoon’ livery, while for a number of years it wore the older Enterprise scheme.

I exposed these views of 233 in the Dublin area over the last three years.

I’ve been featuring the Irish Rail 201 diesels as part of my 20 years in Ireland photography retrospective. I started with the class leader number 201, and have progressed sequentially. Take a wild guess as to which locomotive I’ll conclude the series! (This is not a trick question. You don’t need to consult a crystal ball or take a class in advanced mathematics.).

Irish Rail 233 in Enterprise paint works the down IWT Liner (Dublin to Ballina) at Clondalkin on March 24, 2016. This was shortly before it was repainted into the ‘raccoon’ livery.

In September 2016, Irish Rail 233 works the Belmond Grand Hibernian at Islandbridge, Junction.


Old 233 seen at Dublin’s Connolly Station in September 2018. Lumix LX7 photo.

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