Saturday, May 28, 2016

And Then There Was One

One of the more elusive NS Heritage engines finally made an appearance on the Bristol line. The Norfolk & Western 8103 is one of the only two in the Heritage fleet that I have yet to see in Jonesborough - I'm looking at you Virginian. And even better it was leading, the first time it's done that through Jonesborough, and it was during daylight ... winning!

It had spent the previous 6 months working helper duty in the WV coal fields, so when it finally got out of Bluefield and started working mixed freight through Knoxville I thought there might finally be a chance to see it. It was a bit of an anomaly in that it came into Knoxville as a 132 which would take it east through Asheville, but it got changed to an m32 and routed through Bristol because of track work ... Score!

I started tracking it through the fine folk on the Facing Book. The sky was cloudless which makes for tough picture taking, but you gotta shoot'em when they show up. It took the train nearly 8 hours to get from Knoxville to Jonesborough, which brought it into town in the late afternoon. The sun is rather low and the shadows are harsh so I needed to shoot from the north or west side so it wouldn't be backlit. At that time of day you get glare or shadows or both, pick your poison. A few clouds started forming throughout the day, but not enough to cut much of the glare.

The first picture is the 8103 having just crossed 3rd street west of Jonesborough. Whatever it's carrying (maybe zinc) is leaving an interesting fog.

The next three are the 8103 crossing 2nd street just east of the newly reconstructed SR Depot. A polarizer might have helped the glare but I couldn't afford to lose the one full stop of light.


The next one is the 8103 leaving downtown Johnson City. I intended to shoot closer to downtown to get the train in the shade and cut the glare but I couldn't get parked in the spot I wanted so I kept moving east and pulled over at Elm street where the passenger excursions pick up in JC. The glare was much worse than downtown but there was good light. That fog of material was blowing pretty good through town.

The last one shows 8103 dragging m32 across the Boone Lake (just a creek these days) bridge east of Bluff City. This one is particularly washed out because of the glare. A polarizer would have helped but I didn't get there with enough spare time to try it.

Now if the fine folk at Norfolk Southern would send the VGN through Jonesborough, leading of course, and the Erie and IT leading too ... that would be great.
I've seen all 20 of the Heritage motors. (* leading)

#13  1065   Savannah and Atlanta *
#15  1066   New York Central *
#19  1067   Reading *
#12  1068   Erie
  #1  1069   Virginian
  #8  1070   Wabash *
 #16 1071   Central RR of New Jersey *
#11  1072   Illinois Terminal
  #4  1073   Penn Central *
 #18 1074   Delaware Lackawanna *
 #17 8025   Monongahela *
  #2  8098   Conrail *
#10  8099k Southern *
  #5  8100   Nickel Plate Road *
  #7  8101   Central of Georgia *
  #9  8102   Pennsylvania *
 #14 8103   Norfolk and Western *
  #3  8104   Lehigh Valley *
  #6  8105   Interstate *
 #20 8114   Norfolk Southern *
These are the special interest engines I've seen.

6920    Honoring Our Veterans *
6963    GoRail *
  630    Southern Railway Steam *
  911    Honoring First Responders *
1030    The Forgotten Heritage Engine *
3170w Southern
4000   AD to DC Conversion

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