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January 2nd, 2007
Jay reported CP #424 by his place with 7 units, 4 of them GEVOs and the last one of two STLH GP38-2s. I shot it at the crossing on Wellington Road 35, with CP 8738 - CP 9535 - CP 9821 - CP 8783 - CP 8741 - CP 8743 - STLH 7306.
January 6th, 2007
Derailment! CP London Pickup picked the north wye switch at Galt yard and put both units on the ground at around 20:30. We went down to see what we could see, catching CP #244 at Killean siding on the way in. Earlier in the day, CN #271 had a UP leader with an unpatched SP SD40 elephant style, but I was unable to see it, and in the afternoon, I tied CP #158 to the nearest crossing to my house on the Galt sub with 2 GEVOs in atrocious lighting and rain.
January 14th, 2007
GEXR #432 had a JT42CWR class 66 between two buffers. I watched it at Guelph Via station but didn't do a particularly good job of shooting it.
January 16th, 2007
CN #351 military extra with CN-UP power came through. I shot it at Ingersoll after missing the head end of CN #331 and shooting CN #392. I caught CP #424 with 8783-1614-6021 on the way home.
January 21st, 2007
Saturday we missed an EMD extra through Guelph. Not wanting to miss it again, we went off to Newtonville in the hope that it would be heading east Sunday. It did, eventually, as CN #436, but by the time it came it was somewhat dark. We saw around 20 other trains through the day as well. Tally for the day: CP westbound, VIA #43, CP westbound, VIA #60, VIA #44, CN 371, CN #149, VIA #57, CP #310, CP #153, VIA, CP #122, CN #874, VIA #46, CP #198, CN #305, missed CN #369 with a DPU, CP #121, CN #363, VIA #66, CN #148, CP #116, CN #376, and CN #436 with 8 class 66s in tow. CN #308, #309, #363, and several others passed or parked while we were at Belleville, but we concentrated on CN #436.
January 28th, 2007
CN #351 dimensional extra was heard at Paris so I headed down to Hamilton West to see it, catching the tail end of CN #435 on arrival there. #351 was effectively identical to the CN #351 I shot on December 26th.
January 31st, 2007
CN #391 went into emergency over the Credit bridge, tieing up the Halton sub for the morning. I headed down to mile 30 when he was finished setting off his bad order car and caught CN #391, #399, #385, #338, #271, and #148 in 70 minutes.
February 3rd, 2007
Steve picked me up and we went to Georgetown for CN #271 and CN #390, both with all-BNSF power, VIA #85 with 6429/Telus, Brampton to meet Dan and see CN #435 with CN 2204 on point and #338, Mount Pleasant GO station for GEXR #432 and CN #393 with a UP GEVO trailing, and back to Georgetown for CN #148 with two consecutively numbered ex-Alstom WCs.
February 10th, 2007
We went down to the Galt sub for CP #159 and #138, went home for lunch, and returned to Guelph Junction for #242, #243, #240 which set off a hot car for OSR, #198, moved over to the crossing at 46.76 at west switch Puslinch for CPs #424 and #525 before heading over to Paris Junction for CN #271 with SD70M-2 class unit CN 8000 leading, stopping to push a Honda Civic out of a snowbank near Wolverton on the way. We had just missed CP London Pickup meeting #525 at Wolverton.
February 19th, 2007
I went to the crossing at 48.04 Galt sub for CP #147, the field just east of highway 6 near east switch Puslinch for CP #257, mile 30 Halton sub for a light power CN #391, Tremaine Road mile 34 of the Galt sub for CP #424 which had a pleasant surprise near the end of the train, back to mile 30 for CN #384, CN #148 - the second of three today - and CN #422, and back to Guelph for GEXR #431 light power. CN #148, normally intermodal, was mostly manifest, CN #422 had CN #550's power helping it as it was too heavy and stalled at Tansley. It took three crews to cross the Halton sub. I missed CN #301, a north end train detouring over the Dundas. The strike has really got CN in a crunch.
February 20th, 2007
A Carajas unit was reported on a flat going through Baden on GEXR #432 so I went after it, shooting OSR with 504-503 elephant style at Victoria Road on the way home.
February 24th, 2007
We went to Mount Pleasant GO for CN #454 with CN-CP power and CN #397 with CN-UP-CN-CEFX(BN), Georgetown for Via #84, Mansewood to see a parked CN #392 with BNSF-EMDX(UP) power, returning home for lunch and other events.
February 25th, 2007
We stopped downtown for GEXR #432.
March 3rd, 2007
We headed down to Cambridge for CP #139, #257, #241, and #198.
March 6th, 2007
D&H 7304 led CP #255. I chased it from Waterdown to Guelph Junction, and chased OSR from Guelph Junction back to Guelph on the way home.
March 8th, 2007
I heard a GEXR train entering the Guelph sub at Kitchener bound for Silver so dropped by Guelph station to see what it was and got blurry shots of GEXR 3821 heading to rescue a stalled #431.
March 9th, 2007
CN #150 and CN #350, two extra trains, were block on block out of Chicago and arrived in this area still block on block. #150 was an extra BNSF intermodal train with BNSF-FXE power and CN #350 was a Canadian Military extra with two UP units. Tally for the day: VIA #70, CN #384, CN #385, CN #150, VIA #73, and CN #350.
March 11th, 2007
Jay warned me about a CP #244 coming wtih CP 8798 leading. Wanting my 100th GEVO, I went for it, shortly finding CP #424 behind it with 6 units, 3 of them some of the less than 20 remaining CP 56xx SD40-2s, then getting CP #159 and #243 block on block westbound. We then headed down to Hamilton West for CN #394 with BNSF-CSXT power, CN #384 with two dimensionals, and migrated westward to Copetown following a CN #547 off to rescue a stalled CN #385, which met #330 at Copetown West before #547 cut off to go back to work at Aldershot. We then moved a couple of miles west, catching CN #385 and CN #394 by the detector at Lynden and finished off the day by checking out the current selection of power parked at Aberdeen yard.
March 15th, 2007
Kevin sounded the alarm on two EF Carajas units on a late GEXR #432. I went down to Guelph VIA station for them.
March 17th, 2007
We went to Brantford for a train dubbed the "NAFTA Express" for its CN-NS-UP-TFM-CSX power, catching CN #391 stopped with a D6R at Brantford, CN #396, #148, VIA #76, CN #392, #385, VIA #675, CN #271, and CN #398.
March 18th, 2007
While Shane reported 13 trains with foreign power through the day, I caught only 5 trains and none of them with foreign power: CP #257, #242, #424, #243, and CN #271, the latter of which passed through Paris during the 15 minutes in the day the sun was not out.
March 22nd, 2007
I got word that GEXR #432 had 3 EF Carajas export units. As soon as he was over the detector at Breslau I went to Guelph station to get him, finding the weather to be somewhat substantially worse than I would have liked. With the traffic light gods on my side while the weather gods were against me, I got to the station just as the headlights were coming around the corner, put my video camera on the dashboard, and stepped out into the downpour.
March 23rd, 2007
VIA #84 had 6403, the CBC unit in perfect light, and GEXR #432 had 4 EF Carajas units, but I was only able to catch VIA #87 in the evening with VIA 904.
March 24th, 2007
CEFX 101-CEFX 110 led CP #254 which took the Oakville in the evening. I took a chance and went after it, getting VIA #98 (the Amtrak Maple Leaf), CN #599 (SOR steel train), VIA #79, CN #275, CN #385, and finally CP #254, none of them in shootable light... not that it stopped me from trying. We went after #254 at Kinnear yard, but it did a crew change north of the north switch and didn't stop, with CP #255 blocking any chance of viewing it anyway on the passing track.
March 25th, 2007
Greg warned of CN #399 with a war bonnet leading, so we went west for him, getting distracted by CP trains along the way. We caught CP #241 at Killean and again at Woodstock where it and #159 met #240, stopping at Zorra for CP #158 and finally heading down to Ingersoll for CN #385, CN #399, and VIA #73.
March 27th, 2007
GEXR #432 had the last of the EF Carajas SD70Ms, EFC 755. I went for it at Edinburgh Rd in Guelph. #432 stopped to lift traffic directly from GEXR #580, the local road switcher.
March 29th, 2007
I heard CEFX 101 north give a track release through my peaceful early morning slumber and bounded out of bed to get to Guelph Junction for CP #255 with CEFX 101-110 and 252 axles. CP #2254 met him at Guelph Junction and had two rent-a-wrecks for a bonus. No videos today, my video camera can only do one thing at the moment, and that is insist that I eject the tape! Also got Via #85 with the rolling turd (VIA 6414 in Lotto-Quebec scheme) at lunch hour.
April 1st, 2007
CP #242 had CP-SOO-BNSF for power. I went down to Killean to shoot it, getting #139 and #242 at the east switch, and #242 again at Gore Rd crossing and at a field near Wellington Rd 35 in intense rain. Later on, I shot Via #85 in Guelph's West end followed by GEXR #432 with 13 Class 66 export units. No videos.
April 2nd, 2007
CP #424 was reported to have a CEFX SD90/43MAC trailing. I went to see it, but it was a false alarm, which is just as well because the sun disappeared as the engines came into view and I didn't adjust the exposure appropriately.
April 6th, 2007
D&H 7304 was trailing on CP #254-06 having finished its front couplers in repairs in Winnipeg. A few of us went to Guelph Junction for it. CP #424 slipped by behind while #254 was going through the Junction with 8818 and 4 AC4400CWs. Right after they both cleared the signal went back up at Guelph Junction east for CP #242 and we waited nearly an hour for it to turn up, not knowing what was on it and in spite of the miserable weather. It turned up with KCS 653 and 625 in consist 15 cars behind the power! Well worth the wait.
April 14th, 2007
CN #305 came to Toronto on the 13th with 7 ex-QNSL SD40-2CLC units on their way to Chicago. They came out of Mac on CN #399 for which we went to Bayview, where we found him lifting the NS traffic at Aldershot. Back in Guelph we found CN 911 HazMat disaster training car parked behind GEXR 3835 between Alma and Edinburgh roads surrounded by firefighters and police.
April 16th, 2007
CP #240 had a UP trailing and CP #242 had a BNSF trailing. I shot them both within about 10 minutes at the crossing at 51.90 Galt sub.
April 19th, 2007
CP #138 had CP-CP-CSX-BNSF-BNSF-BNSF -- in perfect lighting. I didn't hear it on time though, and tore off after it beating it, for some definitions of beating it, to Trafalgar Rd in Milton, where #147 was crossing the crossing and met #138 just to the east of the crossing. I waited around a couple of minutes for #142 and came home.
April 21st, 2007
In the afternoon we headed down to Guelph Junction for CP #424 with a freshly painted CP GP9u, CP #525 ham turn with 3 units, and CP #127 with a rent-a-wreck trailing a GEVO, then returned to Guelph for GEXR #431.
April 22nd, 2007
We started our day dropping off family at Pearson airport where I got a call that there was a WC unit on 396 going over the Credit. Off we went to Bramalea GO via the 427 just barely tieing the train to the station and shooting it into the sun. From there we went to Georgetown for lunch and got another call, this time about a UP unit on CP #424 through Woodstock so we left without even stopping at the station catching CN #422 at the 10 Sideroad crossing at mile 30 by chance on the way through. We caught #424 at Puslinch, went down to Bayview where we caught CN #431 wyeing, up to Brantford where #580 was working and another phone call, this time about CP #240 through Woodstock with a SOO leader and 2 BNSFs. We rushed up to Cambridge, barely beating it to the bridge. He worked Cambridge for a while, lifting a unit, and then went off to make a brief set off at Guelph Junction. After getting #240 at Guelph Junction we went to mile 30 for CN #148 with a ratty war bonnet trailing and then came home.
April 24th, 2007
Wanting to enjoy some sunlit trains before the next week long round of rain hits I shot GEXR #431 at Alma Rd and VIA #87 a few minutes behind him at the viaduct.
April 26th, 2007
Derailment! GEXR #580 derailed 6 cars at the exact same spot GEXR #580 derailed on October 22nd, 2003. I went to check it out about an hour after it happened when 4046 came to rescue the tail end cars and open the Edinburgh Rd crossing at 11:00, again around 17:30, and one last time around 22:00 when I found 3 cars still derailed with the crew all having gone home for the night.
April 27th, 2007
GEXR and PNR crews continued their efforts to put GEXR #580's derailed cars back on the tracks. After another whole day of work, three cars remain derailed -- all the ones that were still derailed last night -- GEXR 3835 is dead, a pair of cranes are on site, part of the grade crossing is ripped up, and a covered hopper has been deposited into a hole left by a removed tie, unlikely to move again any time soon. Calling Hulcher might have been easier...
April 28th, 2007
GEXR #580's derailment cleanup continues... the tank car was finally rerailed Friday night but by mid day two covered hoppers remained on the ground. We also went to get CP #241 (missed the power) and CP #242 at east siding switch Killean. 242 had a CSX SD40-2 trailing.
May 1st, 2007
CP #424 had CP-CSX-CSX-CP power and #198 was on his block. I headed down to Puslinch for the pair in spite of the weather. I shot GEXR #431 in the evening.
May 5th, 2007
We went to mile 30 for CN #396 with CN-UP(SP)-UP-IC(CN) and CN #399 with CN-NS, waited around for CN #148 with sequentially numbered units and CN #393, then went to Campbellville hill for what I believe was CP #424, and Galt for CP #198 - which we missed, CP #243, and CP #257.
May 6th, 2007
CP #242 had 2 rebuilt Cartier units. I got them at Puslinch and again at Trafalgar, and returned home before 09:00. Later, I went down to Killean for CP #152, and in the afternoon I went down to mile 30 for CN #338, #148, #392, #393, and #398. On my way home I heard about a CN #396 with UP-UP-NS-BNSF power coming but it was too late for me to catch it or the CN #435 with a BC Rail unit trailing that took the Oakville sub.
May 12th, 2007
We went to Guelph Junction for CP #255, down to Bayview for CN #422, CP #254, VIA #73, CN #331, CP #426, VIA #72, leapfrogged CN #271 between Hamilton West and Bayview, and continued with CN #396, #148, #333, #393, #435, back to Guelph Junction for CP #427, and Puslinch for CP #722 with 20 ballast cars, CP #198, #243, #525, and up to Guelph for GEXR #431.
May 17th, 2007
Mike reported #241 with brand new GEVO 8849 trailing, #243 with a BNSF trailing, and Jay reported CP #242 with another BNSF trailing. With #254 sitting at the ski hill waiting for #427 I figured I might as well get down to Guelph Junction for the parade. I very narrowly missed 241, but got the other four in short order.
May 19th, 2007
I went down to the Galt sub for #159 and #243, catching them quickly and returning home. After lunch I went back out, getting GEXR #432 in Guelph, and CN #396, #148, and #435 at mile 30.
May 20th, 2007
I went to Bayview for CN X388, a Schnabel extra, on incorrect information before diverting to Paris where I found it parked unshootable in the yard parked for the night. Watch for it tomorrow. In the hour I was there, I shot VIA #675 meeting CN #392 and #435, CN #330, and CP #158 at Ayr on the way home.
May 21st, 2007
We went to the berms at Aldershot for Schnabel move CN #388, getting VIA #70 while we waited, then headed to chase it passing CN #399 with a DMIR unit in fourth, so we turned around and went back to Bayview for that. After #399 we headed up toward Georgetown to get ahead of #388 again, getting him at 3rd line, 5th line where he met CN 435, 6th line, and Maple Ave where he met VIA #85. From there we hit the road again and went up to Palgrave on the Mactier sub for CP #434 with two RLK HR412, catching CP #106 pulling into Bolton on the way back. Not bad for a few hours out.
May 26th, 2007
We went to Guelph Junction for #255, #141, and #243 and mile 30 for CN #392. CP #243 had a UP Genset and a Utah-bound Bombardier bi-level coach.
May 27th, 2007
We went to Palgrave for CP 222-25 with the MPEX 601 (new GO MP40), working our way north to Alliston waiting to hear it come. It did come, after many hours, in a rain storm. We got it at Ypres and again at Spence (Alliston Honda storage yard), but were not able to get it again further south as he was a straight shot to Toronto yard. We also got the SSR at the start of the day and GEXR #431 when we got back to Guelph.
May 28th, 2007
I went to Jones Baseline for VIA #84 with the unit nicknamed 'the turd', down to Guelph Junction mileboard for CP #426 with 5911 big bulti, across to Milton for CN #148, off to Ayr for CP #159, #243, #424, London Pickup, and Paris for CN #331, #393, #76, #396, #382, #75.
June 1st, 2007
We cut across through Hawksbury on our way to visit family, finding VIA #32 at Glen Robertson near Alexandria on the VIA Alexandria sub on the way through.
June 3rd, 2007
On our way home, we stopped at Coteau for CN #327 with all foreign power and VIA #61, before heading to the town of Rivière-Beaudette for CN #149, Lancaster across the border in Ontario for CN #362, and back on the 401 to make at least some progress toward home. We got off at Belleville just missing CN #321, so got back on and went to Cobourg for VIA #66, CN #321, CN #368, a very silent CP eastbound, CN #149 with more cars than it had when we saw it a few hours earlier, CN #305 with a D6R and another Via.
June 8th, 2007
I went to Guelph Junction for CP #427 with CP 8858-8859, the last two GEVOs in the most recent order and in a blank paint scheme. On the way I shot CP #159 off Gore Rd, CP #424 at 46.76 near west switch Puslinch, and OSR, CP Guelph Junction Turn, CP Ham Turn, CP #424, CP #427, and CP #154 at Guelph Junction, then saw CP #141 near east switch Puslinch on the way home.
June 9th, 2007
We went to Puslinch for CPs 147, 240, 142, 198, across to mile 30 for CN 435 and 384, up to Georgetown for lunch and CN 422, GEXR 432, CN 392 and 393, back to Guelph Junction for CP 424, another 198, 141, and 243 with two UPY GenSets and across to Ayr for 243 setting off those same UPY GenSets for a reason that remains a mystery to me and London Pickup, catching CP 241 at mileboard Killean on the way home.
June 10th, 2007
A curious detour VIA #72 passed through Guelph at exactly 16:00 with 6446-4 LRC coaches-6406 facing west- 4 LRC coaches.
June 14th, 2007
CP #243 had UPY 2691 middle unit -- finally one travelling with the power. I couldn't pass it up and ducked down to mile 51 Galt sub, the closest point to home, for #138, #243, and #159.
June 18th, 2007
We took a couple of hours to do some trainspotting while at a conference in Edinburgh, Scotland. Stopping first at Waverly station and then travelling east to Musselburgh station on a tip from trainspots.co.uk, we caught 24 trains ranging from two car Electric Multiple Units to 60-car unit coal trains in short order before returning to the venue.
June 20th, 2007
One day each DebConf the conference organisers come up with a day trip. This year 154 of us went to the Isle of Bute by train, leading to a series of entertainingly overcrowded trains on the journey. I shot out the window of the train and at the stations where we stopped and have rather liberally described the locations where those photos were taken as Edinburgh to half way to Glasgow, Glasgow covering up to Port Glasgow, and Wemyss Bay, the ferry transfer point to the island, for everything west of Port Glasgow.
June 21st, 2007
While out museum browsing, Laura took a few photos of trains at Edinburgh Waverly station.
June 22nd, 2007
Once again proving that the best trains come when you aren't there, Laura went downtown and shot a rare Class 67 running light power through Edinburgh Waverly station followed shortly by a parked Class 90 electric freight locomotive also in the passenger-only Waverly corridor.
June 23rd, 2007
We caught a Virgin train in the early afternoon at Edinburgh, Scotland and made for High Wycombe, England. On the way I tried to shoot anything interesting, catching my second Class 37 and my only Class 57 of the trip. Somehow we managed to see two of the rare Class 67s but were not able to shoot either of them in time. We transferred at Leamington Spa and made the whole trip in a little under seven hours.
June 24th, 2007
With one day to explore and unlimited-use BritRail passes in our hands, we hopped on a train at Marlow and went up to Didcot to see the museum and see what else we could find. While we were there, yet another Class 67 went by us without us having a chance to shoot it, towing a long cut of EWS coaches heading toward London.
June 25th, 2007
We picked up the train at Marlow and connected at Maidenhead and Reading to get to Gatwick airport for our flight home, spending an hour or so at Reading and just missing a Freightliner Class 66 passing through the station upon our arrival.
June 26th, 2007
After over a week in the UK for a conference we weren't done yet and immediately headed off to Ottawa for another. These few photos were all I was awake for on the trip there.
July 1st, 2007
Returning from Ottawa after 16 days of madness, we shot CP #221 and another sitting in Smith's Falls yard on the way through on VIA #45.
July 10th, 2007
I went to the station to watch GEXR #432 for my first train since the end of my trip.
July 15th, 2007
Mike warned of 5 UPY gensets on 2-241 by West Toronto diamond at 16:07. We headed down to Galt bridge for them, shooting them in overcast conditions.
July 17th, 2007
CN leader on CP 147. Say no more.
July 19th, 2007
I was warned of a nice lashup on 241-19 and went to the field at Gore Rd and 35 for it and Ham Turn. 241 had 524 axles, Ham Turn was light power.
July 20th, 2007
I ran down to Galt bridge for a few minutes to catch CP 242 with 4 CN units, 198, and the ballast train on the bridge. The clouds got me for the first two, though. In the evening, I ran back down to Galt bridge for CP 240 with 2 more CN units, catching another eastbound on my way home.
July 21st, 2007
We went to mile 30 for the afternoon, seeing far more railfans and planes - including a B-25 - than trains. CN #385, #394, #435, #393 provided our trains for the day.
July 23rd, 2007
I missed the train of the month on the Galt sub as it was through the Junction before 7 in the morning, with 2 CN and 6 BNSF units with no CP power on CP 242-21. In the evening the two CNs returned on 241-23 and I went down to Galt bridge for them.
July 24th, 2007
CP 198-19 had 4 UP Green Goats and a beat up old UP SD40 lettered for Railpower. I shot London Pickup, 424, 198, and 158 at Galt bridge.
July 28th, 2007
We stopped for an hour at Vaughan Intermodal Terminal for an hour on our way to a gathering near Markham, catching CP #103, CP #102, and an extra Emery job.
July 29th, 2007
Around 20 of us went to mile 30 for the afternoon, seeing CN #271, #338, #148, #393, #392, and dimensional move X350.
August 12th, 2007
After visiting friends in Whitby, we went up to Stacey Rd in Newtonville for a couple of hours, catching VIA #44, CN #371, VIA #57, and CP #122 before getting rained out.
August 18th, 2007
We went to Guelph station for VIA #84 and #85, and Georgetown for CN #384, #148, #422, #398, GEXR #432, CN #393, #394, #435, GEXR #431, and VIA #87.
August 19th, 2007
We went to Guelph station for VIA #84, #85, GEXR #432 with 9 EMD export units, and GEXR #431 with a freshly painted new scheme Saskatchewan grain car.
August 25th, 2007
On our way to a cousin's wedding in Ann Arbor, Michigan, we stopped in Durand, Michigan for a couple of hours, pausing briefly to see if we could find the TSBY's shops in Owosso. We waited in Durand for the daily Central Michigan train to come down, assured by a local railfan that it was scheduled to, but alas could not wait long enough. We caught CN #271 meeting CN #148 (parked just east of us from before we arrived), a Detroit-bound train, and what may have been CN #276 with 2 UP units at Durand, and an 0-2-0 steamer preparing for an excursion in Owosso.
August 26th, 2007
After the last of the wedding celebrations in Ann Arbor, we headed for Toledo, Ohio in the afternoon and then to Alliance, Ohio to meet a friend in the evening. We found a lot of interesting stuff, mostly parked, in Toledo in the two hours or so we were there, and caught a Wheeling and Lake Erie train parked under the Interstate 80 overpass, which caused us to jump off the next exit and backtrack, in the town of Parkertown, Ohio.
August 27th, 2007
Not one of my best-ever days of exploring... we took off from our hotel in New Philadelphia, Ohio a bit north to Brewer, Ohio for the Wheeling and Lake Erie shops. We asked for but were not granted permission to enter the yard to see the shops and were told there were no trains scheduled until a few hours later. Disappointed and photoless, we headed south and east, crossing into West Virginia at Steubenville and working our way up to Wheeling, sometimes hearing but never finding any trains. We to enter the yard to see the shops and were told there were no trains scheduled until a few hours later. Disappointed and photoless, we headed south and east, crossing into West Virginia at Steubenville and working our way up to Wheeling. After crossing through Pennsylvania, we returned to West Virginia at Morgantown. We got off there and looked at the two sets of tracks straddling the river through town on the map. One showed on the map as a shortline we had no other record of, the other as CSX. A quick survey of the tracks showed that neither was accurate, with the CSX tracks being a bicycle trail and the other's use being ambiguous. By now coming up on 5 pm and still trainless on the day we headed south again, disappointed, only to see head/ditchlights coming under the Interstate 79 as we were getting on Interstate 68. Off the next exit, back around, into Morgantown, and off to find a shootable location for the mystery train on the mystery tracks. After a while, a slow, 120-car CSX coal train passed us at a small bridge we managed to find in time. From there we made Cumberland a few minutes before sunset, narrowly missing the Capitol Limited Amtrak train and getting a handful of units parked around the shops and the yard, making up for an otherwise abysmal day.
August 28th, 2007
Tuesday morning we woke up at our hotel in Hagerstown and, determined not to duplicate the previous day's failure to get anything went to what seemed like a safe shortline to catch something. We travelled across the mountains on secondary highways to Union Bridge, the home of the Maryland Midland, and found the yard inaccessible with no sign of life. After a few minutes driving around we were pleasantly surprised to see serviceable tracks up a street to a local industry, and upon cursory inspection found a locomotive switching inside. Overjoyed, we travelled back down the hill and set up to wait for the train to come out of the industry and head back to its yard. Within minutes, the lone GP9 popped out of the facility... and backed back into it. After two hours of playing hide-and-seek with a train that had no obvious intention of leaving and with no decent shots we headed back south, following the Maryland Midland tracks southward. We periodically checked backroad crossings to see the state of the tracks in a vain attempt to get ahead of any train that may have been running and were baffled to find the tracks grown in and abandoned one crossing after finding them shiny. We determined that the line ended in a gravel pit and was abandoned beyond it. Somewhere on this exploration our scanner antenna disappeared from its mounting on our roof, although curiously our scanner continues to function reasonably well without anything but the base. From there we went on to the Brunswick MARC station and sat there with a friend from the area we had travelled there to meet until it was time to go toward Washington, DC for dinner.
August 29th, 2007
We stayed at our friend's house in Silver Spring, MD and took the DC Metro into downtown Washington, DC. As the CSX tracks merged in with our Metro line, a 3-unit gravel train pulled up along side us. As the Metro is substantially faster than the freight train, we got off at a station along the way, shot the gravel train, and boarded the next Metro just a few minutes later. Although we passed a large passenger yard just before DC union station with a wide variety of very interesting equipment, we took no photos of the various equipment including an Acela set and several Virginia commuter trains we saw parked.
August 30th, 2007
We stayed in Easton, Maryland after a late-night drive to the Maryland-Delaware penninsula, and headed directly for Federalsburg, Maryland for the Maryland and Delaware. We found the company's shops and office in short order, and a pleasant company employee when asked told us that the train was on its way to Cambridge, Maryland, and would be going across the entire network to the interchange with NS at Seaford, Delaware, before returning to Hurlock Junction. Acting on this information, we went directly to Cambridge where we found that the railway's self-touted tracks to the harbour in the city were abandoned and removed. Slightly frustrated, we started heading out of town, and went up a road toward a large grade crossing. As we approached, the crossing activated and we set ourselves up waiting for the Maryland and Delaware train with its small set of cars and rare CF7 locomotive to finish its work and head back east. After a long wait, it came back out and we chased it briefly, finding it too slow to chase and still get anywhere else in one day. From there we headed into Delaware to the interchange at Seaford hoping to find something - anything - there, but quickly decided heading north to the Norfolk Southern yard at Harrington would be a better bet. Sure enough, as we pulled into town we found ourselves pacing a covered hopper unit train of some description. Hoping to get ahead of it, we pulled off at a road where we found two locomotives sitting on the main. We looked around for a way to shoot the train but weren't able to find an angle. Hoping the train would proceed northward, we headed north a few miles until we found a good shot and began to wait. It quickly became obvious that the train wouldn't be coming so we returned to Harrington and found the train, complete with the two units that had been sitting on the main, sitting there talking to the Diesel Doc. We went into town, shot the yard power, returned to the head end of the train and shot what we could of it, then headed north for New Jersey. We crossed just south of Wilmington and quickly found a yard in Penns Grove with two NS trains in it. We shot them as best we could then took off northbound hoping to make it to Connecticut before it got too late.
August 31st, 2007
We woke up in West Haven, Connecticut and after a brief exploration of New Haven decided it was a bit too urban for our schedule or taste, so we proceeded east along the electric line out, stopping at Bradford to go into the station there. As we parked an Amtrak electric (other than Acela) passed. We waited on the platform about 15 minutes and an Acela train passed. We continued eastward toward New London where we wanted to find the NECR/PWRR interchange, but got distracted by switching sounds in Old Saybrook where we got off the I-95 and found not one but two Providence and Worcester trains switching, as well as our second Acela for the day. We checked the Amtrak schedule and found no trains coming for about 20 minutes, so we took advantage to go east to New London with a train coming to shoot there. We crossed directly into Groton on the far side of the river through town and quickly found a wide open public parking lot facing a railway drawbridge where we waited for the Amtrak train we knew we were ahead of. We heard it coming around the corner on the other side of the river and watched it stop at Union Station and then one of the PWRR trains we had seen switching Old Saybrook crossed the bridge ahead of the Amtrak. After that we were out of time and headed north to Worcester to meet a friend before continuing on to Brattleboro, Vermont.
September 1st, 2007
I heard horns as a train entered Brattleboro but didn't have the scanner on and so had no warning. After a few minutes it became apparent that the train was still in town so I went down to check it out and found NECR #323 parked on the siding in town with no crew. It didn't leave until around 2 the next morning.
September 2nd, 2007
I went down after lunch to shoot the hour-late southbound Amtrak Vermonter, finding it with locomotive AMTK 4 trailing. Several minutes later it crossed the detector 3 miles away at Vernon at 13 miles an hour.
September 3rd, 2007
The very last day of our trip saw us waking up at a friend's house in Burlington, Vermont and stopping in at St. Albans to see what was around, crossing Lake Champlain to see Rouses Point and finding the Amtrak Adirondack with its complement of border guards and not much else. We saw a few other trains from the 401 as we returned home later in the afternoon but did not have the time to stop. With that, our 10-day, 4300 km mixed social and railfan trip came to an end.
September 8th, 2007
Steve and I headed down to Galt station for a couple of hours to see what was happening. When we got there, we found CP 138 getting ready to leave and were not able to get out ahead of it, Galt yard job, and CPs #243 and #241 both with rent-a-wrecks.
September 15th, 2007
We went up to Radio World at 400/Steeles to pick up an antenna to replace the one we lost on our trip. We met up with a friend there and all headed down to Bartlett St. in Toronto on the CP North Toronto sub before heading to Guelph Junction on our way home.
October 6th, 2007
Near the end of a tiring election campaign against the ill-conceived concept of Mixed Member Proportional representation in Ontario, I escaped to Guelph station on a rainy day for GEXR #432. In spite of new Alaska units on CN, CSX detours on CP, new CN units showing up from both GE and EMD, and ETR 9 doing regular steam excursions in Waterloo, I've not escaped to the tracks other than for this one train in the last month due to the election and home renovations. But worry not, I'll be back!
October 21st, 2007
EMD export special! We went to Breslau bridge for GEXR X432 with a set of Europe-bound Class 66s, beating him to Guelph station account of a meet with Via #85.
October 31st, 2007
OSR ran an extra up to Guelph with just 506 and CP 24, a heavy coach. I took a few minutes to shoot it at Corwhin.
November 10th, 2007
We headed down to Galt for CP #722 with a pair of GP9s ahead of bigger power and racks.
November 23rd, 2007
Sunlight! And a few minutes to escape! At the same time! Unheard of lately. I ran off to East Switch Puslinch for an hour catching 2 eastbounds and a westbound, with a good assortment of rental power, on CP.
November 24th, 2007
I went to Guelph station for Via #85.
November 25th, 2007
EMD move! Algerian and French EMD units came through after meeting 85 in Kitchener.
December 1st, 2007
After a lazy morning and lunch we headed down to Guelph Junction to see what we could see, getting CP #159, #138, #255, #427, #249/525 combined, #424, and #254.
December 5th, 2007
I went to Guelph Junction to get CP's Holiday Train, only to find that it was not posing anywhere publically shootable but hiding out on the inaccessible west leg of the wye. After shooting it leaving, I got gas and meandered over to Galt to shoot it posed on the bridge after its show at the station. I had a grand plan: I would take a video of it entering the bridge, swap cameras on the tripod, take long exposures, swap cameras, take a video of it exiting the bridge. Only one flaw in my plan: it did not stop for the antiicipated 5 minutes, but only for around 20 seconds -- just long enough for me to swap tripod mount screws. My desperate, unfocused, failed shots of the tail end of the train as it disappeared have been left to allow you to share in my frustration at that moment.
December 19th, 2007
We left home around 10 am, almost immediately finding a CP train with an NREX unit at Puslinch on our way by on highway 6. After crossing into the US, we followed the Falls Road railway from Lockport to Brockport, ending up in Rochester.
December 20th, 2007
We started out from our hotel in Henrieta outside Rochester at the crack of dawn, heading up to Lakeville to see if we could find the LAL working. At that hour there was little sign of life and pretty soon we heard a Rochester Southern train leaving Rochester, so we headed down to Caledonia to get ahead of it, where we waited a fair time for it. It came with 4 units and 70-odd empties around 9:30 after which we headed back to Lakeville. We heard switching as we got closer, and then it abruptly stopped. Hoping for an LAL train to be leaving we headed for a crossing just out of town and sat for a while, eventually going back into town and just missing a switcher... twice. We sat for a while near the yard eventually figuring out the crew had gone for lunch and shot the lone unit parked mostly inaccessibly from a street in town. From there we headed to the Ontario Central in Victor, where we found no signs of life and proceeded eastword to Phelps and north to Newark in the hopes of getting the Ontario Midland. There was little sign of life there either and the tracks looked like we had missed them earlier in the day. We headed a bit east to Lyons to get a late lunch and then a bit further east to Clyde where we waited for CSX to make up for our lackluster shortline performance, but all we got was 2 Amtrak and a UPS train before hearing Finger Lakes arrive at Lyons. We tore back to Lyons hoping to get them there, with the sun coming out for the first time in days as we went, disappearing again as we arrived. We followed the Lyons runner up to Geneva trying to get ahead of the FGLK train we knew was around, beating it to the yard at Geneva in last light. Damn these short days.
December 21st, 2007
We started out in Oneida and headed straight for Reber Rd outside Rome in the community of Stanwix, New York to watch CSX trains while waiting for the daily run of the Mohawk, Adirondack, and Northern. It came after a couple of hours and we spent a few minutes chasing it in Rome after spending a lot more minutes trying to find it again. After that we returned briefly to Reber Rd., found the tracks dead, and proceeded to Utica. We went to see the NYSW dead line but found it completely obstructed by a long cut of high gons. We went back to the Amtrak station and shot a considerable rush, punctuated by the return of the MWHA with its lone C424 and 5 cars.
December 22nd, 2007
Matt came down from New Jersey to meet us in Amsterdam. We shot several CSX and Amtrak trains there before heading down to Rotterdam Junction to see if Guilford was around. It wasn't, and we headed south to Delanson on the D&H to see what was happening there. On arrival we found a small Kia high-centred on an uncleared road and proceeded to spend the next few minutes using our winter gear and Matt's tow hook to remove the vehicle. Much to the entertainment of all concerned, Matt's Pt Cruiser saved the day. We then shot DH 931 - a CN run-through train with NS power - and NS 169 meeting before heading off to an unpronounceable town a few miles away to try and track down a mysterious new shortline that appeared at Delanson six days earlier.
December 23rd, 2007
We started out in Glens Falls, New York with an eye toward getting the Batten Kill railroad in Greenwich, NY on the off-chance they'd be outside the barn. As we got ready to go we realised it was a silly idea and headed straight for Whitehall, NY. On our way we picked up an EOT and tore off to the next grade crossing where we just missed 3 NS units running southbound light power on the D&H. After a brief southward chase we realised we would not get ahead of them and returned on our original track to Whitehall. A few minutes later VRS Rutland DS indicated that the Whitehall job had already left Whitehall back for Rutland so we skipped Whitehall and went straight for Rutland, catching the Whitehall job returning to Rutland with 5 units and 42 loads. After a quick crew change and switch, they took off with 4 units and 37 loads for Bellows Falls and we returned to Whitehall to see what the D&H had to offer. Eventually the northbound Adirondack came, then 931 came -- the same one we shot over a day earlier not 100 miles away in Delanson -- followed shortly by the southbound Adirondack. We got 931 going through the station after meeting the Amtrak and then returned to Rutland taking a few hasty long exposures of AMTK 716 getting ready to head south before calling it a night at a relative's house in town.
December 24th, 2007
We left my cousin's house in Rutland after a lazy breakfast toward Brattleboro, our destination. We heard GMRC 263 and locomotive 801 that sounded like different trains. We weren't sure until we found 263 with 801 leading fairly far east in Chester, where we waited for them on finding rusty rails. A large cloud bank was rolling in rather suspensefully on this first day of sunlight on our trip. The train took a while to arrive in Chester - we overestimated how far ahead of it we were - and when it did come, it stopped just short of the shot I wanted for the crew to buy lunch in town. After a few minutes delay and some mercy from the clouds, we got our shot and then b-lined it to Brattleboro for our own lunch and seasonal family reunion.
December 27th, 2007
On the 26th I woke to the sound of a whistle as a train left Brattleboro. This time I woke up at dawn and turned my scanner on, almost immediately hearing NECR 323 and 324 converging on Brattleboro. We headed down to the yard and shot both, then chased 324 the three miles to the first crossing south of town by the detector at Vernon before returning for breakfast. My lunch later was interrupted by the sound of Pan Am WJED entering Brattleboro and so I went down to the yard to watch it and the Vermonter head south.
December 28th, 2007
I went down to Brattleboro yard to see the morning 323/324 meet again. 323 arrived on queue but 324 was nowhere to be seen and we soon found out the meet would be taking place in Putney. Hours later I heard 324 arrive in town -- with 323's power. I went down to the yard to see it come in and found it with 5 units, including GEXR 3843! Then two local railfans showed up at my perch on Riverside Rd and told me that 324's train had come apart in Putney and they'd be going back for it. I went to the Amtrak station to wait for them to head back north for the second half of their train and was immediately blocked in by passengers for the southbound Amtrak. I waited at the platform whether I liked it or not for the southbound Vermonter and the northbound power move with my old friend Barney leading.
December 29th, 2007
We left Brattleboro for my parents' place in the Laurentians, stopping only at St. Albans to see CN 323 with 8814-8840, my first of the CN 88xxs. Weather was miserable and rainy all the way up, so we did not stop to see NECR 323/324 meeting in Brattleboro, VRS 307 coming into Burlington, or the three trains queued up at Rouses Point on the D&H. Next time.