Posts Tagged ‘Amtrak photography’

Morning Contrasts

June 16, 2019

The eastbound Lake Shore Limited was running more than two hours late.

By the time it reached Berea, Ohio, in suburban Cleveland the sun had been up for more than an hour but shadows from bridges and building still enveloped the tracks of Norfolk Southern used by Train No. 48.

But much of the rails themselves were in sunlight and that created an interesting effect that I had not planned.

The image shown above was an afterthought. My plan was to use my longest telephoto lens to shoot through the chain link fence of the Front Street overpass to capture the Lake Shore passing the former BE Tower.

I did get that image and it turned out well. But as the train got closer I decided to make one more image just to see how it would turn out.

What I got was a nice contrast between the sunlight illuminating the nose and flanks of lead P42DC No. 129 and the shadows on both sides of the tracks.

I was fortunate that the encroaching shadows did not creep up the side of the train.

There is also some contrast between the silver and blue of the locomotives and the green leaves on the trees on the north side of the tracks.

A two-hour late train is not good news for its passengers and crew, but it worked out well for me.

Dashing Through the Snow at Lilly

June 11, 2019

Norfolk Southern is removing position light signals from its Pittsburgh Line in Pennsylvania with crews working their way west.

Of late they have been in the central part of the state, removing signals from such long-favored photo locations as Lilly, Cresson and Summerhill.

Snow was still on the ground when this scene was made of the eastbound Pennsylvanian dashing through Lilly and beneath the signal bridge put up decades ago by the Pennsylvania Railroad.

Photograph by Todd Dilllon

Daylight in Cleveland for No. 30

June 10, 2019

Even the standards of the usual lateness of Amtrak’s Capitol Limited, for No. 30 to see Cleveland in daylight would take a event of unusual magnitude.

No. 30 is scheduled into Cleveland at 1:45 a.m. Even if the train is one or two hours late it will still see Northeast Ohio in darkness.

But last week one of those unusual occurrences unfolded when a Norfolk Southern intermodal train derailed in Swanton, Ohio, after striking a vehicle on the tracks.

Passengers for the Capitol Limited and Lake Shore Limited rode school buses between Bryan and Toledo, Ohio, to bypass the wreck sight.

The equipment that had arrived in Toledo as No. 29 was turned to become No. 30.

It is shown above passing through Olmsted Falls, Ohio at 2:32 p.m., more than 12 hours after it should have been by here.

On the point is P40DC No. 816. Normally, the long-distance trains through here are assigned P42DC locomotives.

Rapidly Vanishing Scene

June 5, 2019

Workers have been steadily removing the venerable Pennsylvania Railroad position light signals from the Norfolk Southern mainline between Pittsburgh and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Photographer Edward Ribinskas traveled to Altoona and vicinity last month to catch the eastbound Pennsylvanian passing the signal bridge in Summerhill.

If you look in the distance you’ll see an eastbound NS freight coming on the near track. Fortunately for Ed, his timing turned out to be just right in getting this scene.

Amtrak’s Not So Glamorous Motive Power

June 4, 2019

Chargers, Cities Sprinters, P42s and even F40s get most of the attention, but if you search Amtrak’s all-time motive power roster you’ll find a few units that looks gritty and workmanlike.

You won’t find them leading a Chief, a Zephyr or even a corridor train. Instead, they hang out around major terminals and some have never been painted into any phase of an Amtrak livery.

Such is the case with RS3 No. 100. Built by Alco in August 1950 for the New York Central, Amtrak acquired it from Penn Central after it took over ownership of the Northeast Corridor in 1976.

It was retired in October 1985 after serving in work train service. It is shown in New Haven, Connecticut.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Early Morning in Perry, Ohio

June 3, 2019

Amtrak Phase III heritage unit No. 145 has been operating on the Lake Shore Limited between Chicago and Boston in recent weeks.

On many of those trips it was the lead locomotive. Such was the case on May 31 when it led No. 49 and 449 eastward.

Edward Ribinskas got up early to photograph the train at Perry, Ohio, located east of Cleveland.

No. 49 was running on-time and had on the rear private rail car Promontory Point.

Not Much Breakfast to be had in Diner Dover

May 27, 2019

Amtrak began putting Viewliner dining cars built by CAF USA into service not longer before it stopped offering full service dining aboard the Lake Shore Limited in favor of what it termed “fresh and contemporary” meal service.

At the time that service launched in June 2018, no hot meal offerings were offered. Everything served was prepared off the train.

Since then hot food had made a sort of comeback on the Lake Shore Limited and Capitol Limited.

Breakfast now includes a breakfast sandwich of ham, egg and cheddar cheese served on a ciabatta roll that an attendant can heat for you in a microwave oven.

I imagine that one or more passengers were having that sandwich as the westbound Lake Shore passed through Olmsted Falls, Ohio, near Cleveland on the morning I made this image.

It wasn’t a hot, freshly prepared meal created by a chef aboard the train, but I suppose it was better than the alternative of breakfast bars.

Dover, like most of the Viewliner diners, is named after a state capitol city. Like many of those capitols, Dover is not on the Amtrak route map.

In Its Customary Position

May 21, 2019

An Amtrak Viewliner baggage car brings up the rear of the westbound Lake Shore Limited as it cruises through Olmsted Fall, Ohio, en route to Chicago.

The next stop for Train 49 will be Elyria, Ohio.

The typical operation of Nos. 48 and 49 has the Boston section at the front of the train. Only the New York section still has a baggage car and it is always on the rear.

And that’s for good reason, too. You would not want passengers walking through a baggage going to and from the Boston and New York sections.

Ahead of the baggage cars are a pair of Viewliner sleepers and Viewliner dining car Dover.

Bound for Miami

May 19, 2019

Amtrak’s Silver Meteor rushes past the Newark Liberty Airport station without even slowing down.

No. 97 is bound for Miami and assuming it doesn’t lose any significant time en route will be halting at its destination in more than 24 hours.

A Little Out of the Ordinary

May 18, 2019


Amtrak’s Lake Shore Limited usually has two P42DC locomotives pulling it over most of its route, but on May 16-17, it had three.

The lead unit may have been added at Albany-Rensselaer, New York, as online reports indicated that No. 145 was leading the train out of Boston.

No. 48 was running more than three hours late when I photographed it charging through Olmsted Falls, Ohio, on the Chicago Line of Norfolk Southern.

Aside from the trio of P42DCs operating elephant style another out of the ordinary feature of this train was a second Viewliner sleeper in the Boston section.

For those wondering, the train had P42DC Nos.  95, 145 and 28 in that order. The Viewliner dining car was the Dover, which seems these days to be regularly assigned to an equipment set of Nos. 48 and 49.