Thursday, July 3, 2014

Trip to Owosso, MI - 1

Hi, On Monday, June 16 I left my home in Rockville, MD with friends Bill Kalkman and Jim Kleeman on a trip to the Steam Railroading Institute's rail fest in Owosso, MI.  While there we would spend 2 1/2 days chasing former Pere Marquette 2-8-4 #1225 and former NKP 2-8-4 #765 on excursions and would participate in a night photo session with these locomotives.

On the four days before the rail fest we photographed rail action in Ohio and Michigan.  On June 16 we drove to eastern Ohio and followed the Wheeling and Lake Erie west to Brewster, OH, location of  their main yard.  The only activity we saw was a yard job so we pushed on west.

A few miles out of town we spotted an employee sitting by the track and stopped to see it he knew of any imminent activity.  He said the only thing in the next few hours was a Burro Crane returning to Brewster.  However, he told us there would be 2 freights heading west out of Canton within the hour so we took a chance and backtracked to Canton.  While we never found the freights we did spot these two units.

After driving around Canton for a half hour to 45 minutes with nothing else to show for it we headed for Mansfield, OH where we had booked a room for the night.  After checking in we went downtown to see if we could find any rail activity and got lucky.  We stumbled onto this Ashland Railway train (above and below) returning to its yard.

We managed a second shot as it pushed around a wye and crossed the former PRR mainline between Pittsburgh, PA and Chicago, IL.

The next morning we started our day railfanning in Greenwich, OH.  This location became important in 1999 when Conrail was split between CSX and NS.  Here the former B&O's mainline between Baltimore, MD and Chicago, IL crosses the former NYC's Big Four route between Cleveland, OH and St. Louis, MO.  CSX built connections here so that trains could connect between these routes.

First up was Wheeling and Lake Erie train #238 running on trackage rights and coming eastbound off the Chicago Line and heading north onto the former NYC.

Next up was oil train K042 on the same routing.  This train would eventually head east out of Cleveland on the former NYC mainline.

After K042 cleared Q275 came west and crossed the former NYC.  The view looks south.

A westbound stack train takes the connection from the former NYC line to the former B&O line.  Next stop is North Baltimore, OH, site of CSX's new intermodal yard.

An eastbound manifest takes the connection towards Cleveland on the former NYC.  Note that this connection is double tracked.

Four more eastbound trains were captured within the next 45 minutes (above and 3 below).

The connection track curving to the left is for northbound/eastbound and westbound/southbound trains.

A northbound on the former NYC track crossed the CSX couble track to Chicago.

Looking west along the CSX main to Chicago an auto rack train behind leased power heads north.

After almost 3 hours at Greenwich we moved west.  At Boughtonville, OH we arrived as this eastbound local got a clear signal.

A bridge at the east end of CSX's large yard in Willard, OH provided this view of K040 departing.

At Tiffen, OH we were able to find two geeps on the Northern Ohio and Western.  One was lettered for the Central Kansas Rwy and

one for OmniTrax, the NO&W's owner.

Our final stop of the day was Fostoria, OH.  While some photo angles exist in the very well done Iron Triangle Visitor Center and Viewing area the best photos are available from outside the area.  Here an eastbound NS train is crossing the former C&O (now CSX) track between Columbus and Toledo, OH.

Taken from within the Iron Triangle this eastbound NS manifest has just crossed the CSX Chicago LIne.

Southbound coal hoppers come past the home signal protecting the crossing with NS.

An NS local is crossing the former C&O line as it returns to its yard in Fostoria. 

Thanks for looking.

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