2010 Railfanning Retrospective

A westbound CSX light engine move crosses the diamond at Palmer, MA on March 16 2010.

I spent some time over the last couple of weeks browsing through my trackside photos from 2010. Though I didn’t get out nearly as much as I had in previous years, I did manage to get some decent shots. I think I’ll probably make a tradition out of this post as it’s a nice way to put the previous year into perspective and provides a good deal of inspiration to get back outside and shoot some more.

A southbound mixed freight enters NECR’s Palmer, MA yard on March 16, 2010.

March 16th was a particularly gorgeous day last year and proved to be pretty lucrative as far as rail traffic was concerned. We spent the entire day at the Palmer station and saw a variety of CSX and NECR movements.

The power from the train in the previous shot runs has cut off and is shuffling back to the depot.

An NECR GP38 drills the Palmer CSX yard, while a CSX Tamper/alignment machine waits on the main. March 16, 2010.

Requesting clearance to cross the diamond at Palmer.

A westbound Pan Am Southern empty autorack train departs East Deerfield Yard en route to Mechanicsville, NY. April 30, 2010.

I dropped by Pan Am Railways East Deerfield yard on April 30th after work, just in time to catch a pair of Pan Am Southern trains. The lighting that evening was terrific and I managed to get a couple of nice shots despite only having my Canon point and shoot (as opposed to the Nikon D70) I normally use.)

NS 9794, a GE C44-9W, is on the point of Pan Am Southern’s Mohawk – Ayer (MOAY) intermodal train as it crawls into East Deerfield on April 30, 2010.

Exhaust glowing in the last rays of sunlight on May 7, 2010, PAR 312 and 374, both EMD GP40’s haul a loaded slurry train into East Deerfield yard.

On most weekday evenings last summer, East Deerfield could be a pretty lucrative place to hang around. On May 7th I caught this slurry train, plus some yard movements and AYMO/MOAY.

The limestone clay slurry in these cars originated in North Bennington, VT and was interchanged with the PAR at Hoosic Junction, NY by the Vermont Railway.

The slurry train continues its creep into the yard.

Having left their charges further east in the yard, 312 and 374 reverse back to the west end os they can access the lead into the engine servicing area.

Pan Am Southern’s MOAY and AYMO meet in East Deerfield for a crew change on May 7, 2010.

CSX 748, a GE ES44AC, races west with a double-stack intermodal train at Guy State Park in Amsterdam, NY on June 24, 2010.

Every year my friend Tom and I make a Longest Drive on the Longest Day of the year railfanning trip. In 2009 we journeyed to Mt. Washington in New Hampshire. This year we made a trip out to Guy State Park in Amsterdam, NY to take in some CSX action.

Eight locomotives, four of them in fresh PAR paint lead a train of unknown makeup west through East Deerfield yard on September 6, 2010.

We had a beautiful fall in 2010. On Sept. 6th I rode my bike from my house to East Deerfield to see what was up. I passed this monster of a train in Montague and beat it to the yard by about 5 minutes. It’s not the best shot, but the lash-up was too good not to photograph.

BNSF C44-9W 4504 leads a brace of power out of the engine servicing area at East Deerfield on September 17, 2010.

Mid September I spent a weekend on PAR. The first evening at E. Deerfield, and the next day chasing an eastbound through Millers Falls, Orange and Athol. The weather was beautiful and the chasing not as hard as I expected since traffic was pretty sparse.

PAR SD40-3’s 605 and 606 lead an eastbound manifest under Bridge St. in Millers Falls, MA on a brilliant fall morning. Sept. 18, 2010.

The same train crosses Wendell Rd. in Orange, MA.

We continued to chase the train to Athol, where we caught it as it passed under Rt. 2A.

An empty slurry train rolls into N. Bennington, VT behind PAR 514 a former CN GP40-2W on November 29, 2011.

I took a one-day road trip up to Bennington, VT on my birthday. The main reason was to stop in at Bennington Potters to pick up some Christmas presents. However, I also made a quick jog up to North Bennington to check out the beautifully restored depot. As luck would have it, I also managed to catch an empty block of slurry cars being hauled east.

BNSF GP39M 2832 and another unidentified GP39 head north under the new pedestrian bridge at Pioneer, WA. December 31, 2010.

I flew home to Washington State for Christmas this year. I didn’t have a lot of time to spend trackside, but I did go check out the new pedestrian flyover at Pioneer in University Place. The bridge is really nice, and I was lucky enough to catch some light power heading north (presumably from Olympia.

Anyway, that was 2010. It was a surprisingly lucrative year considering how few trips I made out to the tracks. Hopefully 2011 will see a few more trips, but just as many decent photo’s. The goal is to go at last once a month (which I’ve already failed at as I missed January and February, but whatever, I should be able to get the other ten months.


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