Yesterday was the 60th Anniversary of the the East Broad Top Railroad’s first tourist trains under the ownership of the Kovalchick Family who saved it from being scrapped. It was fitting that yesterday was also the first public train rides hosted by the EBT’s new owner, the EBT Foundation. Great things are coming from what is arguably the best preserved railroad site in the United States.
With all of my photo plans cancelled by the restrictions on gatherings and closure of state and national parks, I’ve been working on my backlog of images that need to be edited. First up in that group were images from a Lerro Photography charter at the Steam Railroading Institute in Owosso, Michigan in January 2019. This was a two day charter featuring Pere Marquette 1225. For those who have seen the Polar Express, this is the locomotive that they used as inspiration for the animated locomotive in the movie. They even went so far as to have Skywalker Sound record Pere Marquette 1225 for use as sound effects for the movie.
Over the course of two days, we covered a number of locations over the 15 miles between Owosso and Elsie. The following are a few of my favorites in no particular order:
West Wilkinson Road Sunrise
North Smith Road Farm
King Road Crossing
South Woodbridge Road Crossing
West Wilkinson Road Sunset
Check back next Tuesday for Part 2, including images from the night sessions.
More Steam and Snow from the archive. This time from a 2016 charter on the Reading and Northern. Heavy snow on Saturday turned to rain on Sunday which gave us some great atmospheric effects, including the ground fog seen outside the tunnel.
Continuing from last week’s Oregon Trip Report Part 1, The second morning of the trip starts in the small fishing village of Garabaldi, which is home to the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad, for a Martin Hansen photo charter with the Polson Logging #2 pulling a log train and the McCloud #25 on a mixed freight. We covered a good portion of the line, stopping in several scenic locations including Garabaldi Pier:
Second Nehalem River Bridge:
Hathaway Slough Trestle:
Stasek Slough Trestle:
and back to Smith Lake for the night session:
Thanks again to Martin for putting on an excellent charter and also to Pete Lerro for leading the night session!
While the main purpose of my trip to Oregon in May was to photograph the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad, flying into and out of Portland provided some additional photography opportunities. First up was a stop at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center on Friday afternoon. We arrived to find Southern Pacific 4449 parked outside in preparation for an open house the next day.
Inside the facility were Oregon Railroad & Navigation 197 and Spokane Portland & Seattle 700:
From there we headed to Astoria where we caught the Riverfront Trolley running with several container ships waiting their turn to run up river:
Flavel House gardens in full bloom:
Next, we headed down the coast and found the wreck of the Peter Iredale:
After spending some time on the beach capturing the wreck under menacing skies, we make the final leg of the trip into Garabaldi for the photo charter the next day.
In April, the Wiscasset Waterville & Farmington Railway Museum in Alna, ME held their annual photo excursion. The WW&F has been on my to-do list for a couple years and the opportunity to attend finally presented itself this year. The day started in the yard with some locomotive maintenance and switching before moving out onto the line.
Out on the line we made several stops including Cockeye Curve:
And Top of the Mountain:
The WW&F Ry Museum is dedicated to historical accuracy in just about everything they do. While modern machinery is sometimes used where necessary, the old fashioned way is preferred wherever possible. Case and point was the removal of about 330ft of rail at Davis Grade. They needed to remove the rail to facilitate the correction of some roadbed issues and while they could have easily used modern machinery to pull the rail, they chose to do it by hand just as it was done in 1937 when the line was scrapped. Even more incredible was the fact that the flat car that was used by the original WW&F Ry to scrap the line is back in service at the WW&F Ry Museum today. Since none of the WW&F’s locomotives were operable in 1937, they used draft horses to pull the flat car. All of this was recreated for the photographers assembled this spring. Why? Because they can!
The day ended with a night session produced by Stephen Hussar and his crew. The night session actually started before dark in the machine shop where we found a mechanic working on the Railway’s Ford Model T Railcar:
Once Blue Hour hit, we moved outside to work with the Train Crew and Locomotive #9:
Needless to day it was a fun day photographically and I’m looking forward to a return trip, hopefully next year.