Having enough coal cars to run a forty-seven car unit coal train adds a lot in itself. And to get all three hundred plus cars to work well together, he recently went through the process of aligning all coupler heights and replacing all axles with ones with metal wheels. He says that this has made a great difference as the cars can be pulled so much easier and do not string-line on curves.
I thought of Winston Link when 431 made its debut run over to Whitehall and back the previous night, LOL! I was just starting the drive down to Center from home, when I learned the crew was already headed back eastward just after midnight, light power! I was too late. So tonight I headed out earlier, leaving around 22:45, arriving at the church at 00:15. And this night the crew aboard 431 came by after 04:00. Winston, in a video done of his work at night, had lamented during an interview about how the unpredictability of freight train schedules became an accepted risk/part of the hobby, LOL!. Some photos he took required several consecutive nights before he got a chance at taking the shot.
Tonight, I am all set up by a little after 01:00. The weather is outstanding for a night photo, windy with temps in the forties in January! It deteriorates as the hours pass into a steady light rain with temps falling into the low thirties. Still excellent for a night photo and that is what matters! Ratty weather for humans produces great night photos of trains! After 03:15ish I hear the CLP 263 job departing from Whitehall on the car scanner. I do the usual tweaking of the lighting to keep moving around, not that it needed it. Being careful not to do something I’ll regret, lol! Around 04:00 I hear an air horn, but from the wrong direction! It belongs to the VTR GP 38-2 201 leading the job going to Burlington coming out of Rutland to meet the Whitehall train at Center. Several minutes later I hear 431 coming in from the west, blowing for crossings in West Rutland. I’m thinking how this could be spectacular! Visualizing the 431 wearing VTR red & white at this location.
Atop the stepladder, I hear 431s engineer blowing for the Rte 4 crossing, then a secondary road followed by silence as the train climbs Boardman Hill toward me. Finally I see brush trackside below the church start to lighten up, I fire off the lighting, and watch. Headlights appear behind the evergreen in front of me and I look away at my mark, then as the 431 starts to follow the curved track to my left I look back and watch as the pilot plow slowly drifts up and past my mark. I wait a second then fire. Red and white reflects back! Wow! I give conductor Dominic Cioffi a wave as his side of the cab passes by, the dark shape of 431 towering above me. Then I check the photo on the GRs monitor.............Holy Cow! Dosen’t 431 look great here? Glistening in the rain?
This historic trackage, incorporated as the Rutland & Whitehall Railroad in Nov. of 1848 before being acquired by the Delaware & Hudson, who would eventually sell it to VRS subsidiary Clarendon & Pittsford, saw all the exotic D&H diesels passing by the church here, RS-3s, PAs and the Baldwin Sharks to name a few models. The 431 certainly fits right in tonight with the addition of the evergreen, which I’m sure is a recent improvement to the location! SHot in Center Rutland, Vermont on January 13, 2017 at 04:11. Special thanks to Michael Ricketts! Please enjoy! Comments are welcomed.
All The Best In 2017;
While I don't keep up much with manufacturers offerings I don't think anyone's come up with this commercially!
Over the years I've photographed many piles of discarded ties. I've found that, while they differ in size, texture, condition, etc., they do share some commonalities. And, they're oh so simple to recreate in model form.
I trust the photos work well as a guide if you want to include yet another of my prototype observations on your layout.