On a photo charter in February 2016, Christopher Brang assesses the situation while working on a stuck brake that has halted progress down the hill.
One of my goals for the year is to photograph the people involved in the operations of these historic machines more than I have in the past rather than simply focusing on the trains. Fortunately I have a couple opportunities to practice this year.
The recent cold snap had me thinking about the coldest weather I’ve experienced. It was -31°F the morning we went to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and it was one of the most beautiful sights I’ve seen. Clear blue skies and the air shimmered with tiny ice crystals floating. Its hard to believe it was ten years ago. It seems like I was just there.
Another from the archives. A few years ago, a snow storm hit Williamsburg in late December. It was after Christmas but before they take the decorations down in January. It was an easy decision to make the four hour drive in the snow for this photography opportunity.
Here’s one of my favorite photos from a private photo charter on the Durango & Silverton back in February 2011. 478 pulls a mixed train along the Animas River at a location called Tank Creek. In the background just before the tracks curve out of the frame, you can see the water tank that gives this location its name.
A year ago this weekend I stopped to photograph the Strasburg Railroad on my way to a photo charter on the Reading & Northern. Shortly after I arrived I saw Strasburg’s Russell Snow Plow heading out of the yard. I went straight for a cut hoping for deep enough snow to capture the plow at work. Fortunately I guessed correctly.
As I’ve mentioned before, I had the privilege of attending the first DLWS trip to Yellowstone. Fountain Flats was our first stop of the first morning. The contrast between the steam and snow vs the silhouettes of the bison made for a great black and white image.
Helmstetter’s Curve on the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad.
Photographing steam locomotives in the snow is one of my favorite things to do. The snow acts as a giant reflector bouncing light into the running gear, allowing you to really see all of the detail and textures that is often missed. The cold weather also allows long white exhaust plumes to hang in the air.
During the night shoot at a Lerro Productions photo charter at the Reading and Northern, a family happened to walk by to see what was going on down at the station. Pete talked them into posing for the photo line in a Polar Express like scene. Just one of those happy accidents that occurs from time to time during photo shoots.