Last weekend, August 28th to be exact, I went down to one of the busiest places in my area for railroading. The Town of Kenova, West Virginia features
the former Chesapeake & Ohio mainline between Cincinatti, Ohio to Newport News, Virginia as well as the former Norfolk & Western mainline Columbus,
Ohio to Roanoke, Virginia. When I first arrived, I should have known that it was going to be a busy day for trainwatching. I say this because when I
got off of the interstate down there. An eastbound Norfolk Southern freight train was passing over on the Ohio River bridge down there. Kind of
needless to say that I was disappointed after I left. Nine trains in a little over three hours isn't too bad of a day.
Here's part 1 of the madness that took place.
Part 2 of the said madness.
A couple of days before that though, I had been out and about down towards one of my absolute favorite spots in the county. I wasn't actually
planning on getting video of anything until I heard the radio crackle to life with a westbound stopped about ten miles to the east. So, after hearing
that, I decided to head over to a spot where I knew I could get a clear shot of it approaching.
Now the following three videos are hot off of my hard drive and my video camera!!!
The first two videos I shot while out railfanning on Saturday morning and afternoon.
First up, we have CSXcoal train T229 passing through my hometown with a Road Slug that was rebuilt from a former Baltimore & Ohio GP35 built back in
July of 1964.
Second due is CSX grain train G854 coming through the outskirts of Charleston, West Virginia being led eastbound by General Electric built ES44DC
#5421. Most of you may say that there is nothing special about this engine. Well I beg to differ with this one because of the horn on the top of the
locomotive. This locomotive has had its horn replaced with a Nathan Airchime K5LA instead of the "normal" K5HL
This video I shot just a whee bit over two months ago. I finally had the time today to upload it to Youtube without it messing up on me. Here we have
Norfolk Southern 3382 pulling out from the fuel pad at Dickinson Yard in Belle, West Virginia. After it pulls out of the fuel pad, it then proceeds
south back into the yard so it can switch out cars for other trains.
Boy has it been too long since I've updated this thread or what. I've been shooting some more video in quite a few different places this time. I say
its time we get to the videos that I have done over the past month or so. The first four videos in this post I shot at Kenova, West Virginia on a
Saturday in late October.
First up is a Norfolk Southern coal train, 857, coming across the massive Ohio River Bridge at Kenova, West Virginia on a warm Saturday afternoon in
October. This train, by what I counted was over two hundred cars in length with just two engines on th point. This would equal out to about a two mile
long train mileage wise if my math is right. As for how long this bridge is, I'm looking over into the state of Ohio from where I was at and I still
couldn't see the end of the bridge. I believe this bridge is somewhere close to a mile and a half in length.
Second one to show up that day was brought to us by the boys at CSX Transportation. CSX train N298 heads west through Kenova as it heads for
Catlettsburg, Kentucky and CSX's Big Sandy and Elkhorn Subdivisions. Once the train reaches Catlettburg, the power will then "run around the train"
and take it on down the Big Sandy River. What I mean by "run around the train" is that the power will be taken off of one end, ran around on another
track, and then coupled onto the new front of the train to take it where ever it is destined to go to. This train was heading down to some place in
Georgia I believe.
The third one to show up was Norfolk Southern train 233, a Norfolk, Virginia to Chicago, Illinois intermodal as it rounds the bend to the approach for
the Ohio River Bridge. Recently, if you count September as being recent, this train and a few others like it on the Pcoahontas Division were upgraded
to doublestack capacity with the opening of Norfolk Southern's Heartland Corridor Project on September 9th. Usually, this train runs in late
afternoon to early evening but I was surprised when it showed up an hour earlier than expected. Last time I was down there it didn't run until about
seven in the evening. Crank up the volume to experience the full effect of nearly 13,000 horsepower gliding up the 0.02% grade to the bridge.
The fourth and last one to show up was Norfolk Southern train #218, eastbound intermodal, with a product from the Electro Motive Division of General
Motors when it was built. This train was on its way from Chicago, Illinois to Charlotte, North Carolina bound for the southern United States. As you
may notice, there are a few UPS trailers scattered throughout the train's consist. This video was taken almost behind the Wendy's Old Fashioned
Hamburgers at Coal Grove, Ohio.
You guys know how the Environmental Protection Administration is trying to make everyone cut down on emissions right? Well, the crew on this CSX coal
train were telling the E.P.A. what they think of these new emission standards and what the EPA can do with these said standards on this Saturday
morning in October. These two General Electric products do their best at imitating a steam locomotive when they start to accelerate with this heavy
coal train bound for Brice, North Carolina.
On Saturday, November 13th, I decided to go back down to one of my favorite local spots to get some video. Needless to say that I wasn't disappointed
when I left down there and headed home. Usually it stays pretty busy down there with two seperate rail lines coming in down there. This day was one of
those where it stayed busy for most of the time I was there. This CSX train, G894 out of Garrett, Indiana, heads eastbound through Saint Albans with
nearly an entire train of brand new covered hoppers. I believe this guys had one hundred and ten cars or somewhere close to that. As you can see when
the video starts, this train is pounding the crossover from number two main over to number one main as it comes out of the curve.
About two and a half hours after the grain train had went through, I noticed that the westbound signal for #1 track at the East End of Dock was
showing a "High Clear" and that something was on its way. When it changed, I had no idea that it would be a westbound empty doing nearly sixty miles
per hour through town. A couple of minutes later, the scanner at my side crackled to life with this, "T314-12 CSXT 463. West on one, CLEAR all the
way through Saint Albans."
This video is the train that closed out the day and some of the night for me down there. CSX train G858-12 heads eastbound through beautiful Downtown
Saint Albans on this chilly, November night. Little did I know that before it got there it would have one of the "Old Guard" of the CSX locomotive
fleet leading the charge. The lead unit, CSXT 8642, is almost one year younger than I am since it was built in October of 1985!!!
Now the following two videos I shot yesterday, December 8th.
First one is of Amtrak train #50, the eastbound Cardinal, as it heads through Marmet on its way to places like Charlottesville, Virginia; Washington,
D.C. and New York, New York. This train runs three times a week on Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday heading east for New York and west for Chi-town. One
of the rumors that I have been hearing is that this train is supposed to return back to its seven days a week service sometime toward the end of 2011.
On the rear of the train is Chesapeake & Ohio Railway business car #3, Chapel Hill, as it is being rented by someone or a group of people.
The last video from Wednesday is Norfolk Southern train 380, a Columbus, Ohio to Charleston (Quincy), WV mixed freight that runs daily on Norfolk
Southern's West Virginia Secondary. Today's "massive" eleven car train was being handled by a former Union Pacific SD60 that had been sold to HELM
Leasing Company. This video was taken about two miles fromo the north end of the yard at Belle, West Virginia.
This video is just part one of a four part series of some of the trains that I caught on video last year.
In this video, trains from CSX, Norfolk Southern, and locomotives from several other railroads and leasing companies are featured. This is part one of
the four parts that will be put up onto Youtube by the end of the week.
Sorry I haven't been able to update this in a while, been sick over the past month.
Anyway, with that now by the wayside, on to the videos.
This first video goes back to just before Christmas of 2010 with Norfolk Southern train number 380 heading southbound through the Capitol City of West
Virginia as it heads for the yard at the hamlet of Diamond, West Virginia. Power for this one was Capital Equipment Financing 3165, an ElectroMotive
Division of General Motors SD40-2 built in Janruary of 1980 for the Union Pacific Railroad as their 3689.
Second up to bat is Amtrak's train #50, the eastbound Cardinal, as it heads through my hometown while on its way to Clifton Forge, Charlottesville,
Virginia, Washington, D.C., and on up to New York City. Engineer T.R. Hensley at the controls as they come into town laying on the horn for the
crossing in the foreground and myself. The Car on the end of the train is Chesapeake & Ohio's ex-Business Car #3, the Chapel Hill, that is a mainstay
here on both Amtrak and the fall excursion in October.
On New Years Eve, I decided to head down once again to the Amtrak Station at the Capitol City of West Virginia. In the first video from the day, we
see CSX engine 280 hauling tail as it takes an empty coal train west past the Amtrak station. Watch as this guy as he is bobbing and weaving as the
train gets closer to my camera. This train may have been heading for the yards at Russell, Kentucky since he was empty. Perhaps the best horn
"salute: of the day belonged to the last eastbound that showed up while I was there. CSX engine number 294 leads an eastbound unit coal train past
As for the "Best of 2010" series, here are the last three parts of what I called my best of the past year.
In part two, I have some of the nice, oddball, and insane locomotive lashups that I caught last year. The first two photos are on Norfolk Southen's
ex-CONRAIL West Virginia Secondary and they feature Burlington Northern Santa Fe along with a "Holy Smokes" lashup from the Kansas City Southern
Railway. This video features locations like my hometown of Marmet, WV, but place like Charleston, Montgomery, Malden, and Kenova, West Virginia.
Part three features more CSX than anything else even though I did throw in a Norfolk Southern freight train in. the first train in this video is CSX
train G858-12 heading eastbound through Saint Albans, WV lead by ex-Chessie System/C&O 8642, an SD50 built by the ElectroMotive Division of General
Motors in March of 1984.
Part four features some of the trains that I do not see around here that often. With the exception of a nine unit monster of an empty grain train
coming through town Other than the three grain trains in the video, the rest are ones that do not come through here that often. Maybe once a year if
I am lucky and it seems that I was lucky enough to get them when I did. These include Harsco Track Technologies railgrinding train, the Ringling
Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus Train, and CSX's Office Car Special that came through here in August.
Two of the three newest videos I shot back in Janruary of this year which just happened to be the week before I got sick. The first of the three
videos is of CSX W018-05, welded rail train, heading eastbound through Marmet, West Virginia being led by CSX 6427 as it heads east for Richmond,
Virginia and points either north or south. The 6427 was built as Chessie System/B&O 4289 in Janurary of 1978. The video after this was shot just a
week before I shot the video of the work train. This video is of CSX unit coal train U165 as it heads east for the coal docks at Newport News,
Virginia. The train is being led by CSX engine #701, which is an oddball in itself. This locomotive is just one of about two dozen General Electric
GEVOs that have had their horn swapped out. Locomotive has a beautiful Nathan Airchime K5LAR24 on top of its long hood.
The last video is of a Norfolk Southern light power move on CSX/Kenova River Terminal trackage at Kenova, West Virginia. These two engines were
heading over to the Norfolk Southern yard about a one tenth of a mile behind me off of NS' Kenova District Mainline. My guess is that they brought a
train over to the docks so that the coal could be loaded onto barges and sent down or up the Ohio River.
Hi guys long-time lurker and very occasional poster. I've been writing my own songs for many years but apart from a brief stint at gigging in the late
'90's I haven't had the guts (self-confidence) to take it any further. Last night I bit the bullet and uploaded a song & video to YouTube and I'd
really appreciate any opinions, criticism, thoughts etc. If you like it and think you know anybody else who would then passing on the link would be
The song is about my schoolday's in the late 60's and early 70's when corporal punishment was the norm in the Irish education system.
I've decided to give this thread another swift kick in the rear just to keep it up and running.
For some reason, I've been getting a lot of the "heritage units" that Norfolk Southern Railway has done as part of their 30th Anniversary
Celebration. Every time that I have gotten a chance to see one of these things. They have been on a coal train every single time. It all just
happened to start one Saturday evening a little about two months ago.
The first heritage unit that I caught was NS #1072 in the "Illinois Terminal" heritage as it was loading a coal train at the docks just outside of
Belle, West Virginia. Ran into this thing purely on accident and it was a good thing that I did. This because myself and a friend of mine decided to
try and chase this thing on the former Virginian Railway Princeton to Deep Water mainline in which we got too far ahead of it and got lost in the
The second one of these units that I caught was two days later as I was up at the interchange between the fromer Virginian and New York Central
trackage at Alloy, West Virginia. In this video, It is NS 8103 in the "Norfolk & Western" heritage as it first brings an empty train across the
bridge. Once it got to Alloy, it was then tacked on as the last motor of a 3-engine pusher set that was to push a loaded train down to Mullens, West
The third one of these things that I caught was one that I had really been anxious to see. Ten days after the Norfolk & Western unit made an
appearance. NS #1069 in the "Virginian Railway" heritage as it is seen moving about the yard at Diamond, West Virginia just outside of Belle. There
is a funny story as to why the engine stopped where it did. As my father and I were standing down by the north end of the yard. The yard crew that was
on the engine saw us standing there and they brought the unit down to us and stopped right in front of the camera.
A few days after that took place it was time to head down on the Norfolk Southern mainline to catch the LIMA "Superpower Design" steam locomotive to
make a triumphant return to West Virginia. This time as part of their "Employee Appreciation" trips with the Nickel Plate Road #765 as it made the
runs between Kermit, Williamson and Matewan, West Virginia during the first weekend in August. Tagging along with the 765 for these trips was NS #8100
in the "Nickel Plate Road" heritage scheme.
Two weeks later, I was back down on the Norfolk Southern mainline through West Virginia and Ohio for a day of catching trains. This time I was at
Kenova, West Virginia on NS' Kenova District. This is a well known train watching hot spot in the Tri-State area. As myself and a couple friends of
mine were waiting. We kept hearing this empty coal train calling out the signals down around Ironton, Ohio eastbound. So we waited and we waited and
not to long after that we heard "South Point" being called out on the radio. South Point being the town of South Point, Ohio that is just across the
Ohio River from Kenova. As we are watching the train come across the bridge. We began to see the orange paint on it so we thought that it was a
visitor from the Western US amking an appearance. Boy were we wrong as NS #8105 in the "INTERSTATE" heritage brings an empty coal train back into
The last one that caught on video was just the other day as I was once again at the former Virginian Railway/New York Central interchange at Alloy,
West Virginia. After getting word of the "CONRAIL" and the "Savannah & Atlanta" heritage units being in the area. I decided to head up there and
see what I could find. After checking at Dickinson Yard and not finding either one of them. It was then off to Riverside, WV and the coal load out
located there. Again, no such luck in finding them. Then I headed to Alloy to see if they were there or not. As I topped the hill between the
ambulance station and the entrance to Elkem Metals. I saw the NS #1065 in the "Savannah & Atlanta" heritage setting in one of the sidings. It was
then on to the other end of the yard where NS #8098 in the royal blue and white of the "CONRAIL" heritage was setting with a train ready to take it
back to Mullens, West Virginia.
Out of the twenty heritage units that NS has done for their 30th Anniversary. I've gotten nine out of the twenty so far. These six videos posted
above do not include the photos of the three others that I have seen in the past two months.
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