Washington State – June 2015

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A northbound Union Pacific stack train with marine containers from APL, K-Line, Hapag-Lloyd and others rolls through Sunnyside Park on June 07, 2015.

I attended a work conference in Texas last spring and since I was already halfway across the country I decided that I’d might as well just keep heading west and spend some time visiting family and traipsing about the Pacific Northwest.

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A mid-Autumn trip to Bear Mountain State Park

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A southbound intermodal train crosses the causeway at the north end of Iona Island as it speeds towards New Jersey on CSX’s River Subdivision..

On August 24, 2014 I was able to spend a few hours trackside around Bear Mountain State Park along the Hudson River in New York State.   I’d wanted to check out this area for awhile and it ended up being a decent day.  We didn’t hike up the mountain though as we weren’t entirely sure where we could get a good vantage point.  Unfortunately, what you see here are pretty much all the photo’s I got as the CF card in my camera got corrupted somehow.  Oh well, maybe that experience will give me the kick I need to get a new(er) Nikon. Continue reading

Mass Central Open House

MCER 1750 basks in the warm June sun.

MCER 1750 basks in the warm June sun.

As part of the Northeast/New England RPM Meet in Collinsville, CT there are a number of tours available to participants. This year I went to Palmer, MA for the Mass Central Railroad’s open house. Lighting was a little tough since we was there at high noon on a gorgeous June 1st, but I did my best to get a few shots of the equipment and facility Continue reading

Railfanning the Moffat Route

Union Pacific GE AC44CWCTE leads a loaded coal train downgrade towards Denver

On July 11 I flew to Colorado to spend a few days visiting a friend who lives in Denver.  While not strictly a railfan trip, I did manage to spend a day scouting out the eastern side of the Moffat Route.  To my surprise I even managed to shoot a few trains.

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Coastal Connecticut – September 2013

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An Amtrak Acela Express train speeds south through Old Saybrook, CT. on Sept. 6, 2013

Tired of being inside while the weather was so beautiful, and a little bummed about not having had much time to be trackside over the summer, a friend and I took a day back in September and drove to the Connecticut shore. We made a stop in Essex to take a look at the steam operation (not really my thing, but the ancient GE diesels on the property were neat) then spent quite a bit of time around Old Saybrook and Old Lyme before working our way back north through Berlin and Windsor Locks.

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New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland Railfanning Trip – October 2012

An eastbound NS autorack train being forwarded by Conrail Shared Assets rolls east through Piscataway, NJ bound for Oak Island Yard in Newark. The lead unit is NS Dash 9-40CW 8978.

Tom Murray and I spent some time traveling around New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland this past October.  Our route took us through Piscataway, NJ where we shot a bunch of Conrail Shared Assets moves; Bethlehem, Harrisburg, Altoona, and Sand Patch, PA; Cumberland, MD and back up through Piscataway and the Chemical Coast.

We shot a lot of interesting power and had some great weather (Hurricane Sandy hit right after we made it home).  All in all, it was a good week to be trackside.  Click the photo above or here to view the full gallery.

– Chris

Night Shoot at the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum, Oct. 1, 2011

Former NH FL9 #2023 and CV S-4 #8081 pose next to the recently built gallows signals at the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum. Willimantic, CT. Oct. 1, 2011.

Back in October I had the pleasure of taking part in a night photo shoot at the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum.  The event involved 12 “scenes” that were posed and lit for a photo-line of about 15 photographers.  As I’d never done any low (no) light photography before it was an interesting experience.  I’m pretty happy with how well my photo’s turned out and am looking forward to spending some time trackside this winter using the techniques I learned.  The full gallery can be viewed on my PBase site.

– Chris

Washington State Railfanning Trip – July 2011

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Union Pacific SD70ACe #8574 leads a southbound K-Line train through Vancouver, WA on July 12, 2011

I went home for a family wedding in July and was able to take some extra time to do a circuit through the state on a railfanning junket.  I spent a little time around Steilacoom, then headed south to meet up with my friend Tom in Vancouver.  Next we drove east through the gorge for 2 days before booking it north to Leavenworth and spending 2 days on Stevens Pass.  Saw lots of trains, and had some pretty terrific weather.  The full gallery of images can be found on my new! PBase site: http://www.pbase.com/cslemp/washington_state__july_2011.

– Chris

2010 Railfanning Retrospective

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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. Continue reading

High and Wide!

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Conway Scenic RR GP7 #573 (ex Maine Central) leads a high and wide move through the siding at Crawford Notch, NH on June 20, 2009.

With nothing planned for the weekend, and no desire to hang out with the usual suspects all day (CSX, PAR & NECR) I decided it might be nice to go for a bit of a drive (or a lot of a drive depending on how much driving you consider 460 miles in one day to be) to watch the Conway Scenic Railroad move a rare high and wide load along their line in the shadow of Mt. Washington. So, on Saturday (June 20th as I’ve been a bit neglectful of updates to this site) Tom Murray and I loaded the truck up with scanner, antenna, cameras, lots and lots of batteries, cold drinks, and not a single map of the area we were traversing before grabbing a rather unsatisfying breakfast at Dunkin’ Donuts and charging northwards into the White Mountains. Continue reading