Tag Archives: freight

BNSF Along the Shore

The beach at Shoreline is alongside the BNSF railroad tracks and there is always a good chance that a train will rumble past while you are there.  We got one while we were on a stretch of the beach that is tight up under the tracks.  I grabbed a few shots as the train headed south towards the city.

Red Kestrel

The Red Funnel ferries have made appearances on the blog after previous UK trips including this one here.  While we were on the seafront at Cowes, we saw one of the ferries coming in but it looked pretty odd.  It actually looked a lot like the old style of ferries from my youngest days.  There was little upper superstructure and it looked like it was designed for trucks only.  The name was Red Kestrel so a quick google confirmed that this is exactly what it is.  By taking freight traffic, it leaves more space on the main ferries for the car traffic.  Apparently, it has space for about 12 passengers so I guess it is not well appointed!

Some Waterfront Freight Traffic

The weather was not great for a portion of the holiday period so, when the sun came out, we took a trip to Shoreline to walk along the beach.  A couple of freight trains passed by while we were there.  One of them was just a set of locomotives on a light move while the other was a train of tank cars.  The curves along the shore provide a bit more context to just how long a full sized freight train can be with the line of cars snaking off into the distance.

PDX Evening Arrivals

Back in the summer of 2017, we made a trip to Oregon for the solar eclipse.  You can read all about that in previous posts here and here.  The night before the eclipse, we stayed in Portland and the most convenient place to stay was at a hotel near the airport.  The location turned out to be between the two runways at PDX and that evening the approach paths brought the planes in from our direction to the runways.

I figured I could pop out for a few minutes and photograph some of the arrivals.  The evening light was coming in and we were a little on the wrong side of the closer runway but this was an impromptu shoot so I didn’t mind.  A little biz jet traffic came in on the other runway while I got a selection of Q400s, FedEx freighters and the usual narrowbodies.

Since I was close to the centerline of the approach, it provided a slightly different perspective to that which I would normally go for.  Looking up and almost straight down the nose is interesting.  Not something to do all the time but certainly some variety (particularly if it only requires you to walk out to the parking lot).  It’s good to try different angles on a regular basis and avoid getting repetitive.

Waiting for Amtrak

AE7I3990.jpgWhile we were walking around Truckee, a UP freight train pulled in to the town just short of a grade crossing.  At first I assumed it was going to head into the pass but it didn’t move.  We then figured out that an Amtrak train was due in from the opposite direction but was running about an hour late.  (The flight only started in the Bay Area so I have no idea how late it might have ended up being by the time it got to Chicago.)  Since there is only a single track, the UP train had to wait until the route was clear.  We left before it did so I hope they got on their way before too long.

Rochelle Rail Park

AU0E8340.jpgRochelle IL is about half way between Chicago and the Mississippi River. For those with an interest in railroading, it is known as a location where the Union Pacific and the BNSF railroads cross. The town has taken this crossing to heart and created a park where the two lines intersect. There is a place to sit under cover and watch the trains come through while there are areas for kids to play. There is even a gift shop that stocks railroad related gifts.

AU0E8337.jpgI was in Rochelle for work and my colleagues were interested in seeing where the crossing was located so, during a lunch break, we headed to see it. It was a rather hot day so hanging around in the sun did not seem like a good idea to me. I went straight to the covered area to stay in the shade while they took a look around. Of course, I wasn’t going to go somewhere without taking my camera along.

AU0E8346.jpgWe weren’t there terribly long but we did have a few trains come through. If I had thought about things, I might have come better prepared and had some hearing protection. The two tracks cross on the flat and then there are grade crossings for the local streets so they sound their horns as they come through. In such close proximity, this is a touch loud!

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Locos Trying to Block My View

AU0E0586.jpgThere have been a lot of plane shots recently and that shouldn’t be too surprising given that this is primarily an aviation photography blog. However, I do mix it up and you probably deserve something different. How about some trains. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that this is still related to a plane shoot though. Two locations on a day out were alongside rail lines and we got some traffic while we were there.

AU0E8652.jpgOne location was near a bridge over a small river. We got a loco running along the line so I got a few shots as it came by. That was the only thing we saw on that line. The tracks on the other side of the airport are a different story. They have a steady stream of traffic. We sometimes were frustrated by a train in line of sight while something cool was departing but other times the trains rumbled through while little was going on.

AU0E0368.jpgI figured I should grab some shots of the trains whatever the circumstances. While rail may be the day job for me, I am not much of a train photographer. Those that do this on a regular basis will, no doubt, identify the shortcomings of technique for capturing train images. If they want to let me know what I was doing wrong, feel free. I am always happy to learn. However, I won’t be taking a lot of train shots so the chances for practicing will be limited.

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