Tag Archives: railroad station

Boston & Maine Station at Ely, Vermont with Cotton Candy Sky.

On Friday January 24, 2020, I made a series of photos of the former Boston & Maine station at Ely, Vermont.

These views were made looking south toward White River Junction and show the station in partial silhouette against a wintery cotton-candy sky.

I exposed them in RAW using my Lumix LX7 and processed the files using light room to make the most of the dramatic sky.

Tracking the Light post Daily!

Boston & Maine Station—Eagle Bridge, New York on December 27, 2017.

Yesterday was pretty frosty when I arrived at Eagle Bridge, New York.

I was just passing though, but made time to expose these photos. Not a wheel was turning, so I made these atmospheric images of the derelict Boston & Maine station and environs, demonstrating that you can make interesting railroad photos without a train.

Exposed digitally using my FujiFilm X-T1

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day!

Pennsylvania Station at Twilight.

Pat Yough said, ‘You’ve never been here before?’

‘No, somehow I missed this.’

‘How’s that possible?’

I’d been to Gap, Pennsylvania many times to photograph Amtrak trains. But I never ventured railroad-east along the Main Line to Christiana, instead driving Highway 30 toward Coatesville.

I should have  known better.

Often the most interesting locations are away from the main road.

There’s your tip for the day!

Former Pennsylvania Railroad station at Christiana.

Former Pennsylvania Railroad station at Christiana.

The old Main Line. Now Amtrak’s Keystone Corridor.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

Railroad Station at Bellows Falls, Vermont.

Three freight railroads, plus Amtrak share the tracks at Bellows Falls. Yet on the morning of my visit last week not a wheel was turning.

I worked with the cosmic morning light to make a few photos of the old station building and the railway environment.

Not all great railway photos need trains. And Tracking the Light is more about the process of making railway photos than simply the execution of ‘great train pictures’.

Fog and sun; Those specks in the sky are birds.

For these images I worked with my Lumix LX7 (color digital photos) and a Leica 3a with screw-mount 35mm focal length Nikkor lens (black & white photos exposed on Kodak Tri-X and processed in Ilford Perceptol).


I have my favorites. Can you guess which these are?


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Garrison, New York—When a Station isn’t.

By classic definition a Railroad station is the designated place where the railroad conducts its business. It may, or may not involve a structure.

Too often the station-building is confused for the station itself.

This may seem pedantic, but it leads to both linguistic problems and logistical complications.

Take the old New York Central station building at Garrison, New York. It’s now been repurposed as the Philipstown Depot Theatre. It still looks like a railroad station, but it isn’t one any more.

Exposed using a FujiFilm X-T1 digital camera on December 27, 2016. File adjusted for contrast and exposure to improve sky detail and overall mood..

The ‘Tickets’ sign is misleading. I don’t think you’ll be able to purchase a round trip to Grand Central Terminal here!

Today’s Metro-North Garrison station is nearby; this is a modern facility with an ugly overhead footbridge and high-level platforms. The old building is fenced off from the tracks with no access to the line.

A Poughkeepsie-bound Metro-North train accelerates away from its station stop at Garrison, New York. The current ‘station’ is located south of the historic station building.

Check out my book: Railway Depots, Stations and Terminals published by Voyageur Press.

Read a review of the book by clicking here: https://westernsreboot.com/2015/10/09/train-stations-celebrated-in-new-book/

I made these views using my FujiFilm X-T1.

Tracking the Light is Daily!

Amtrak’s Windsor, Connecticut Station.

Former New Haven Railroad station at Windsor, Connecticut.
Former New Haven Railroad station at Windsor, Connecticut.

Low morning sun diffused with light fog (mist) from  the Connecticut River made for nearly ideal lighting to capture this station’s classic architecture.

Tracking the Light is on autopilot while Brian is traveling. 

Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Revisited

Reading Terminal clock
Reading Terminal clock on Market Street, Philadelphia. Exposed with a Canon 7D with 28-135mm lens.

On Wednesday January 2, 2013, I revisited Philadelphia’s old Reading Terminal with my brother Sean and Michael Scherer. It was still a functioning passenger terminal when I first visited this iconic railroad facility in the late 1970s with my family. In 2007, I covered its history in my book Railroads of Pennsylvania. Here’s an excerpt of my text:

In the 1890s, Philadelphia & Reading invested its anthracite wealth in construction of one of Pennsylvania’s most ornately decorated company headquarters and passenger terminals. Facing Philadelphia’s Market Street, one of downtown’s main thoroughfares, Reading Terminal represented an ostentatious display of success, but one that now has benefited citizens and visitors to Philadelphia for more than a century.Like many large railway terminals of its time, Reading Terminal followed the architectural pattern established in Britain, perfected at London’s St. Pancras station. This pattern features two distinct structures for the head house and train shed. The Reading station architect, F. H. Kimball, designed the head house to rise nine stories above the street and its façade is made of pink and white granite, decorated with terra cotta trimmings. Behind the head house is the functional part of the station, an enormous balloon-style train shed—the last surviving North American example—designed and built by Philadelphia’s Wilson Brothers.  The terminal closed as a result of consolidation of Philadelphia’s suburban services on November 6, 1984. Its modern underground replacement­—SEPTA’s Market East Station—is nearby.

Philadelphia & Reading’s crown jewel was its immense, opulent railroad terminal and office building on Market Street in Philadelphia. Its corporate imperialism was spelled out in an Italian Renaissance revival style, with this corner office specially designed for the president of the company. Exposed with a Canon 7D with 28-135mm lens.

Reading Terminal Market's logo reflects that of the old Reading Company, which like many coal hauling railroads symbolically used the diamond (inferring black diamonds)
Reading Terminal Market’s logo reflects that of the old Reading Company— like many coal hauling railroads symbolically used the diamond (inferring black diamonds). Exposed with a Lumix LX3.

This large mural inside Reading Terminal conveys a sense of what the shed was like in the late 1930s. Exposed with a Lumix LX3.

It has been nearly three decades since the last train departed the shed at Reading Terminal. Today the classic balloon shed covers part of the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Lumix LX3 photo.

Designed by Philadelphia’s Wilson Brothers and built by Charles McCall, Reading Terminal’s vast balloon shed is the last surviving example of its type in the United States.


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