Tag Archives: The Trackside Photographer

Vacation Trips Yield Less Live Rail-Fanning Than Usual

On my trips in July from Friday 6/30-Sunday 7/2/17, as well as Wednesday 7/12-Friday 7/15/17, live trains just weren’t happening for me. This was despite the fact that I made my usual solo trip to the Losh/Worley Family Reunion (that I have not missed since I first attended in July, 2010), and went track-side in Willow Springs, Cabool, Fordland, Seymour , North Diggins and Mountain Grove, Missouri (as I stayed in Mountain Grove for my 2nd year in a row), and Springfield, I settled for just pics as in some locations my wait left nothing to show for it, and in others, the BNSF trains I found idling on the tracks never moved, and my time or patience ran out. I did catch one that was moving south through Seymour, and initially paced it, getting some video, but there were too many obstructions for me to feel it was even worth keeping or sharing the video.

I did, however try to follow the example of the site I covered earlier here on Legacies On The Rails, The Trackside Photographer, and at least took pics of the railroad landscape. Signal towers, signal boxes, tracks, crossing gates, etc, understanding that just like some of the locomotives, rail cars, etc that I am normally so busy catching in pics and video, these features may not always be around, therefor preserving a bit of history by getting those shots.

I then started vacation on Saturday, July 8th but never went anywhere until Wednesday, July 12th, as my wife, my daughter and I had to get some much needed painting done on our house. But on 7/12, my wife Denise and I headed to the Council Bluffs, Iowa and Omaha, Nebraska area. But, when I am with her, I normally spend little time if any sitting track-side unless I am approaching a crossing as we go from one place to another and a train just happens to be coming, or already on the tracks. Then I may get video, or a few pics. But on this trip, I was always too late at the crossings to catch approaching trains and settled for freight car or covered hopper pics, but no live locomotives.

On July 12th, we ate and Dan & Jami’s Railway Bar & Grill in Council Bluffs, Iowa. The food and service were good and though it was right next to the tracks, despite my mad dashes out the door to try to catch trains we heard coming, I always settled for various freight car pics. We later visited the Grenville M Dodge House (one of the architects of the Union Pacific Railroad) also located in Council Bluffs. We also stood at the Lincoln Monument, the site where President Abraham Lincoln stood and declared (referring to the aforementioned Union Pacific) “This is where I will build my railroad!”.

On July 13th, we visited the Union Pacific Museum in Council Bluffs, and the Durham Museum that located inside the Omaha, Nebraska Union Station. I also got my pic with the Golden Spike Monument in Council Bluffs, the site where the Union Pacific Railroad began building westward, to eventually meet the Central Pacific Railroad, completing the Transcontinental Railroad in Promontory, Utah on May 10th,1869.

Dinner that evening was at the Old Market Spaghetti Works in Omaha, after we visited Hollywood Candy & Antiques, and a few other antique shops.

On July 14th, in Omaha, we found a pedestrian bridge that goes over railroad tracks at Lewis and Clark Landing and then discovered that the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge (aka the “Bob Bridge“) also had the same tracks running underneath it. While we were on the “Bob Bridge“, Denise took a video of me clowning around, paying tribute to the character of “Achoo” played by Dave Chappelle from the 1993 movie Robin Hood: Men In Tights as halfway across the bridge, you can stand with one foot in Iowa, and the other in Nebraska. Unfortunately, despite waiting a bit on the bridge at Lewis & Clark Landing, I again failed to have any trains come my way and settled for pics of some some covered hoppers parked on a nearby siding.

We also took a riverboat ride on the River City Star, also located in Council Bluffs, as this is another of our favorite pursuits while we are on our various trips. We have also taken boat rides in our hometown of Kansas City, as well as in St Louis, Missouri, Hannibal, Missouri, Branson, Missouri and in one city in Texas.

We also took in the Brass Armadillo Antique Mall in Omaha. We also frequent the one in Odessa, Missouri.

The only real quality pics I ended up with on this trip came when we visited the Railswest Railroad Museum in Council Bluffs also on 7/14.

Dinner that evening was at Romeo’s Mexican Food & Pizza in Bellevue, Nebraska as we were staying the night at the Surestay Plus in Bellevue that I mentioned in my earlier blog on Presidential Trains that both my wife and daughter stayed at earlier in the year. We were in the Andrew Jackson Room. It was a really clean, impressive facility.

However, doing rail-fanning in Council Bluffs and Omaha, and Bellevue put me up to having done rail-fanning in 70 cities over 10 states since March, 2008. 21 cities over 4 states in the 2nd quarter of 2017 May through August thus far.

I did try to do some brief track-side time the morning of Saturday 7/15/17 before we headed home to Kansas City, but again settled only for pics I caught earlier before heading track-side.

Later that day we visited the Walnut Creek Recreation Area and the Nebraska Crossing Outlet Mall both in Gretna, Nebraska and the Strategic Air Command Museum in Ashland, Nebraska, (I will be covering that and another smaller air museum in Council Bluffs that we visited on my Military Air Fan blog here on WordPress) and finally the Finders Keepers Antique Mall/ Coffe Shoppe in Percival, Iowa.

I also had the week of July 16th-July 23rd off though my wife did not, and while I could have gotten in a ton of rail-fanning that week, it was so hot out (100 plus most days) I hardly wanted to get out. I did get one Norfolk Southern video on Monday 7/17, and a few videos in North Kansas City, Missouri and at at Kansas City Union Station on Friday 7/28/17 as I attended my very first meeting of the Kansas City Chapter of the National Railroad Historical Society, that meets most 4th Fridays in the 3rd Floor Kansas City Terminal Railway Boardroom at Union Station: (check out my Facebook group Fans Of The Kansas City Terminal Railway) I have since started a Facebook page for them: see Kansas City Chapter NRHS. I planned to attend again on Friday 8/25/17, but something came up. Hopefully I will be back with them on 9/22/17. We were on vacation the week of  8/12-8/20/17 but I tried to concentrate on time with my family and did not get out to do any rail-fanning. That was my last vacation for 2017.

Here are my latest Legacies On The Rails Fan Videos from You Tube:

I hope that as I always encourage you to do that you are in a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, and pursuing Him daily through His Word, prayer, and active fellowship in a local church. And when it comes to trains and all things railroading, that you continue leaving Legacies…On The Rails!

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Great Rail Sites Volume 3: The Trackside Photographer

Since becoming a rail-fan in 2008 and starting Legacies On The Rails 5 years ago this month, and through the hobby of and process known as rail-fanning for me has mostly been focused on watching trains, and driving by rail-yards looking for that next great pic and/or video of a locomotive, a Heritage Unit, or other piece of “Fallen Flag” equipment or something I had not caught before. Visiting rail museums, locomotive, or caboose displays, depots (or depot/rail museums) and riding and recording various excursion trains. You’ll recall that in August, 2015 the Legacies On The Rails Art Show took place at Cathy Kline‘s art studio at the CB&Q Depot in Parkville, Missouri.

Now, I did start the Facebook Page Railroad Bridges: Related Photos & Video. I do take pics of a grade crossing, or signals here and there, and honestly, some of my favorite pics, be they mine or by another rail-fan, are those in which the equipment is passing under signal towers. I take pics of the buildings at the crossings that tell which railroad they belong to, and have the mile-post marker, and often a phone number to call to report crossing emergencies. I am always looking for more Facebook Groups to share these pics on.

But in hind-sight, I don’t feel like I ever gave that much time in thought about the Railroad Landscape itself which is what our featured site today is all about, which is The Trackside Photographer.

Since March of 2016, thetracksidephotographer.com has focused on 24 different categories that you will find clearly listed on their website, and as is stated in their Mission Statement, focuses on what is along the tracks…..not on the tracks. This is clearly just as important to what makes up railroads past and present as any of the topics I have been focusing on.

The Trackside Photographer publishes a new article every Thursday and they are always looking for more photographer/authors to submit work for publication within certain guidelines, that are also accessible in their website. You can submit your work to them at tracksidephotographer@embarqmail.com .

Some of the topics covered on The Trackside Photographer are: Bridges-like John Marvig‘s July 2012 piece: The Kate Shelley High Bridge. Freight Houses-like David Kahler‘s 2016 piece: Standing Tall. Grade Crossings-like Ed Fuller‘s August, 2016 piece from The Editor’s Notebook. Grain Elevators-like Eric Gagnon‘s June,2016 piece: Wheat Filled Wonders. Interlocking Towers. Maintenance Of Way. Signs. Signals-like Carl Smith‘s 6/15/17 piece: Two Hundred Miles And Counting. Stations, and much more!

So, be sure to check out The Trackside Photographer today on their website as well as on Facebook! As I’ve been famous for saying for years: You’ll be glad ya’ did!

 

This Edition’s Railroad Equipment Profile is this Missouri Pacific Caboose that I photographed recently in Buckner, Missouri, #11078. The 11000 Series Cabooses were used by Missouri Pacific for yard and transfer service. After December, 1982, Mo-Pac had 651 cabooses, including 407 bay-window, 208 cupola, and 36 transfer models. They were assigned Class CA-19 through Class CA-35 designations. 11078 is one of the CA-19 Class. # 11078 is one of several built by T&P in Marshall, Texas in 1955, and  rebuilt in Sedalia, Mo 1966-1971. It was removed from service 10/15/84 at Sedalia. Thanks to Utahrails.net for this information.

As always, though trains are fun, and have a lifetime of history and heritage behind them, nothing on earth can compare to a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and I hope that you have accepted him as your Personal Lord & Savior and are actively following His leading through His word, prayer, and fellowship in a local church. If you have not, I hope you will accept his free gift of salvation today!

And when it comes to trains, the Railroad Landscape and everything that is railroading, that you continue leaving Legacies…On The Rails!