Thursday, September 2, 2010

Railfanning 8-27-2010

Hi, Friend Rudy Volin and I went out to photograph Norfolk Southern's B Line on Friday, August 27. As we were passing Manassas, VA we heard the dispatcher tell #227 it would be waiting at a location we thought was near Culpeper, VA for a meet. Based on further communication while we waited at The Plains, VA it seemed like #227 would not reach us for 1 1/2 hours. We decided to move on to see if we could find anything else to photograph.

Approaching Front Royal, VA we heard chatter on the radio indicating that grain train #40T was headed south and getting close. We went to Success, north of Front Royal, where the train showed up after about a 15 minute wait. The morning was off to a good start.

We shot the helpers going away before leaving.

Even better was that the train was headed down the Shenandoah Valley Line. Finding a southbound train here in the morning is not common so we decided to give chase. We both wanted the shot crossing Compton Creek on a long trestle so we went directly there. It was possible to photograph both the head end and

the helpers.
The dispatcher told #40T it would meet #202 at Vaughn. Number 202 is the new Memphis, TN to Newark, NJ intermodal train that runs via the Shenandoah Valley Line.

After getting a last shot of #40T we headed back to Compton Creek for a different angle of the trestle, this time with #202.

We followed #202 up to Riverton Junction in Front Royal.

We then got ahead of it and waited for it in Berryville, VA. However, the train was held at Success for some reason. Fortunately, it seemed, #11R from Binghamton, NY to Linwood, NC was approaching. However, when it was about 8 miles away the train went into emergency and took a 1 hour 25 minute delay. By the time it got Berryville the sun was on the wrong side of the tracks and the clouds had moved in. We left Berryville before the train arrived and moved south to Boyce.

While the train made its way through Front Royal we took a short cut and came out on Happy Creek Road, east of town. However, the train arrived quickly and we were unable to find a satisfactory spot. Soon after, the train climbed Linden Hill which slowed it considerably, allowing us to get this photograph at the top.

Our next planned location was at Marshall, VA, which should have been easy. Highway construction caused a traffic tie up and all we could do was listen as the train ran away from us. Once we cleared the tie up I thought we could beat the train to either the wye in Manassas or to the crew change a few mile south of the wye in Bristow since the train took a longer route and we could move faster. Shortly after we arrived at Bristow we could here #11R approaching Manassas. However, he blew through Bristow without stopping. So much for the crew change but still a nice photo spot.

Thanks for looking. I hope you enjoyed the photos.

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