Yesterday, I made this image of the Mountaineer descending at the Arethusa Falls grade crossing against a backdrop of autumnal foliage and the famous Frankenstein Cliff in New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
A shaft of sun illuminated the front of GP35 216 which made for a tricky exposure.
I’d preset the camera settings in manual mode, anticipating the bright yellow front of the engine catching the wink of sun. Further adjustment of highlight and shadow areas was necessary in post processing.
On Wednesday, I shadowed Conway Scenic’s Mountaineer on its ascent of Crawford Notch.
Ironically, one of the most dramatic unobstructed views of the line can be obtained directly off Route 302, the road which runs parallel to the railroad in the Mount Washington Valley.
I exposed this photo of the Mountaineer on ‘the Girders’ bridge near the scenic vista pull-off at Crawford Notch using my Nikon Z6 digital camera. I processed the camera’s NEF file using Adobe Lightroom to lighten shadows and correct the color temperature, while nominally boosting saturation.
The other day I traveled on the head-end of Conway Scenic Railroad’s Mountaineer in order to take notes on running times to help revise the schedule, and to make photos for publicity, marketing and the company files.
This is a selection of the images I exposed using a FujiFilm XT1 with 16-55mm Fujinon zoom lens.
Working with the camera’s RAW files, prior to post processing, I converted the files to DNG format using Iridient software and then for final presentation adjusted the DNG files using adobe Lightroom .
As part of my responsibilities as Manager of Marketing and Events at Conway Scenic Railroad, I organize the creation of our billboards in the Conway-area.
For this season’s billboard, I opted to feature our Mountaineer crossing the Frankenstein trestle on the former Maine Central Mountain Division. The Billboard design was the work of Silverline Graphics; printing and installation was performed by Gemini Sign and Design.
I exposed the billboard photo last autumn using my FujiFilm XT1. And using the same camera, I photographed the billboard itself where our Conway Branch crosses Rt302/Rt16 near White Mountain Oil in North Conway.
Also, I adjusted the photo file that appears on the billboard using Adobe Lightroom using the same MacBook Pro that I use to prepare Tracking the Light.
Saturday, November 14, 2020, Conway Scenic Railroad operated its final Mountaineer of the 2020 operating season. As scheduled, this ran from North Conway to Crawford, Notch, New Hampshire and return.
Historically CSRR ceased operations over Crawford Notch earlier in the season.
I used this rare late-season move over the former Maine Central Mountain Division to make some unusual photos. Bare leaf-less trees allow for views that are unobtainable during the summer and early autumn.
During the course of the operating season, I’d made several head-end trips and Hyrail inspections of the line to look for angles. Some of the finest locations I found are a long way from public highways.
For this photo of eastward train 162, I climbed to an elevated point, and used my FujiFilm XT1 with 12mm Zeiss Touit lens.
Where better to photograph a train on Halloween than Frankenstein trestle?
This afternoon, Kris Sabbatino and I ventured to this iconic landmark to catch the eastward Conway Scenic Mountaineer.
Mount Washington seen to the right of the train was covered in fresh autumn snow.
The bridge is named for the nearby cliffs, which were named not for the characters of Mary Shelley’s fictional story, but rather for the family of German artists that painted landscapes of the Mount Washington Valley in the 19th Century.
On August 12, 2019—one year ago—I’d organized a special publicity run over New Hampshire’s Crawford Notch to make photos and video of Conway Scenic’s then ‘Notch Train’—the train soon to be rebranded as the ‘Mountaineer’.
This departed Crawford eastbound just after sunrise.
I had preselected scenic locations along the former Maine Central Mountain Division where we stopped the train for static photos and organized roll-bys for video.
I was working with three still cameras that day, while Adam Bartley worked with the company video camera.
Our operating crew was Mike Lacey and Joe Costello.
These photos were made with my Lumix LX7. Several images from this run have since appeared in Conway Scenic advertising and in magazine articles.
June 27, 2020 was the Conway Scenic Railroad’s Mountaineer debut!
This was the big day!
I organized banners for the locomotive . . .
And a ribbon-cutting photo-op with Dave and Rhonda Swirk at North Conway, New Hampshire.
The guests were boarded.
I departed ahead of the train by road and hiked in to the Frankenstein trestle where I caught the train on film and video. Then, I laid chase to intercept it again at Crawford, NH. A neat trick considering all the equipment I was carrying.
At the end of the day, I was interviewed on the radio for broadcast Monday.
The other day, in preparation for debut of Conway Scenic’s Mountaineer, the railroad operated a work extra with locomotive 1751. This ran up the former Maine Central Mountain Division to clear debris and rocks that had fallen on the line.
To move the heaviest rocks, railroad president and general manager Dave Swirk personally operated an excavator.
I traveled with the train to document its work.
On the return run, I posed a sequence of photos at the famous Frankenstein bridge.
Photos exposed using a FujiFilm XT1 with 18-135mm lens.
Today, Saturday June 27, 2020, Conway Scenic Railroad the Mountaineer will make its inaugural run between North Conway and Crawford Notch.