Tag Archives: M-420

State Line Hill: Another ‘Ugly’ Alco and a Caboose!—Three photos.

Following up on yesterday’s post ‘M420 and a diamond,’ here are three more photos from the same roll of black & white film exposed in June 1986.

These photos portray a northward Central Vermont local freight on State Line Hill at Stafford Hollow Road in Monson, Massachusetts.

Keep in mind that with each roll of 120 size film I obtained 16 frames by using a ‘super slide’ insert in my dad’s Rolliei Model T. 

The points here are: 

1)  I budgeted my film judiciously. 

2) MLW M420 diesels were a comparatively easy catch. 

3) Maybe I overstated my distaste for these ‘Ugly Alcos’.

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Classic Kodachrome: Montreal-built at State Line Crossing.

In the mid-1980s, Canadian National Railway’s Montreal Locomotive Works M-420s were commonly operated on its Central Vermont Railway subsidiary.

It might seem odd in retrospect, but I wasn’t keen on these peculiar locomotives when they were common. Although they were derived from an Alco design, and I was big fan of Alco, I thought they were ugly and not ‘real’ Alcos. I much preferred Central Vermont’s own Alco RS-11s.

  Exposed on Kodachrome 25 slide film with a Leica 3A fitted with a 65mm Elmar using a Visoflex.
June 25, 1986, State Line Crossing, Monson, Massachusets. Exposed on Kodachrome 25 slide film with a Leica 3A fitted with a 65mm Elmar using a Visoflex.

My ill-founded prejudices never stopped me from making photographs of the M-420s. And even back in 1986, I was pleased to catch this one leading Central Vermont’s freight 562 across Route 32 in Monson, Massachusetts (immediately north of the Massachusetts-Connecticut State Line).

This is the top of State Line Hill and it was all downgrade from here. I’m standing on a pile of ballast for elevation.

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