Kip Grant Visit

Ken Karlewicz and I visited Kip Grant last Thursday. The idea was to give Ken a chance to see another excellent model railroad before he starts in on his own. A nice side benefit was running his D&H engines using Kip's NYCE system.  The temps were in the single digits but the sky was clear.  We had lunch at the former station and took a quick tour of Fort Ed before the daylight gave out.

I thought you'd enjoy seeing a few of the photos from the visit…..
Wayne Sittner

Lee On30 Update


The rotary plow is done and the weed burner has just a few details to be painted.

Lee Schamberger

Howe Scale

The time is early Sunday morning and we are in the former Green Mountain Railway yard in Rutland, Vermont, now a part of the VRS yard here as an eighty car loaded ethanol train passes eastbound through the city, heading for the mountain. The substantial grade over Mount Holly can be observed looking southeast from my location here as the climb noticeably begins a few hundred feet away. Once the train is outside of the main city area it will be split into two sections bound for Bellows Falls and the NECR where it is recombined into one train.  Leader GMTX 9000 is trailed by a mix of seven leased and Vermont Rail System (VRS) owned GP 40’s and GP 38-2’s. The imposing SD 60 is the largest locomotive calling an engine terminal in the state home at present I believe!
I settled on shooting the 9000 here alongside the Howe Scale building after I scouted out the area below the bridge in Cuttingsville some twenty minutes away by car.  The river running under the bridge was completely covered by snow and ice, leaving me with the impression that too many things could go wrong in there tonight alone to make it worth setting up for a night photo. When the river is open you can tell where the water is, but covered by snow and ice? No thanks! So I scooted back down into Rutland to set up at the Howe Scale building only to discover I would have to alter my view slightly as an OMYA covered hopper was right up against the grade crossing. Reminding myself the situation could be much worse, with the near siding filled with cars, blocking the view entirely, I got to work setting up the lights. At nearly the same time the ethanol train is departing from the VRS yard at the CP connection in Whitehall, NY. Some forty five minutes later I am waiting atop the stepladder as the 9000 peeks it’s cab into view onto the tangent track above my location!
After a short stop at the yard office I can hear the eight EMD’s notch out a little on the throttle to get the train moving again, and here they come drifting down past me at around ten mph! I was concentrating so on the SD 60 9000 up front, I never noticed it had begun snowing until I viewed the photo afterwards! When the snow is flying at night is my favorite condition for night photos I believe! The snow seems to add a sense of wildness to the scene! At least to me. As the collection of EMD’s comes up to me it is clear by their exhaust they are not idling along on this level stretch of track, but in the lower notches pulling. With the 9000 pilot arriving in position over the grade crossing I do the usual half second pause, then press the shutter release, capturing the image! Success! Oh man! She looks good here also! The blue & white paint contrasting with the more muted colors of the Howe Scale building. See what you think! Please enjoy! Comments are welcomed. Shot in Rutland, Vermont on January 25, 2015 at 03:52.
All The Best in 2015;
Gary Knapp

D$& On Rogers Island

We return to one of my favorite night photo locations on Canadian Pacifics ex-D&H main line tonight, Rogers Island in Fort Edward, NY. It has been quite some time since my last visit here. Reminding myself that I can never be too early for the train I want to shoot, and how it is much more enjoyable doing this as a retiree, I arrive here tonight FIVE hours before D47 does! The shot however, was worth it! See what you think. Greg Klingler who helped with past shots of the D&H painted BL2 night photos at Riverside Station met me tonight to pose in the photo but had to head home early by eleven p.m. to get rest for his job. While we waited I confessed to Greg as to how I thought D47 was much later than we expected due to the fact I violated “Railfan Rule #6 driving down from Hinesburg.................Thou shall always make certain the train one wants to shoot has left its terminal BEFORE thou does! lol!
The big attraction here tonight was, of course, D47s southbound leader, D&H 7304, one of only two remaining locomotives on the CP roster to wear the final D&H paint scheme. I wanted an image of 7304 here before it was re-assigned to a different job. And before the snow cover disappeared!  Greg left for home around eleven, and it was almost an hour and a half later that I could hear, finally, over the depth charges being set off by river beaver nearby, a train approaching from the north! There was no mistaking the low roar a train makes at night! A couple test shots confirmed everything was working correctly with the lights and camera, after spending the last five hrs. waiting, powered up. 7304s air horn is heard blowing for the street crossing above my location here, and about a minute later headlights swing around the curve leading to the bridge over the Hudson. All is forgiven over the long wait as 7304 wheels out onto the bridge, reaches my mark and is captured by the lighting and camera! SUCCESS!
Shot on Rogers Island in Fort Edward, New York on January 21, 2015 at 00:28. Please enjoy! Comments are welcome.
All The Best In 2015;
Gary Knapp