Saturday, February 20, 2010

Of Lucky Scarves and Speeding Trains

As is so often the case here in New England, the weather just couldn't make up its mind what it was going to do yesterday. It was sunny! It was overcast! It was sunny again! It was overcast again! Sigh ...  Oh well, there's not much you can do about the weather except adapt so once I finally made up my mind that yes, I was going to go try to get a train picture or two, I decided the best way to go about it was to bundle up before heading out.  Layers are definitely the way to go and it also helps if you have a really nice scarf that was sent to you as a surprise gift (thanks again, Sheila!).

It was almost noon-time so I decided to head down to Stoddard Hill where I had gone a couple times before and come back with pictures of the lovely swans that reside there but no trains.  I was hoping my timing might be a little better this outing as I was taking the advice of Tom Nanos, a local photographer who takes some amazing railroad pictures that you can check out for yourselves if you'd like to visit Tom Nanos' Railroad Photography Blog.  Trust me, it's well worth the click!

Tom stumbled onto my blog through a Google search and has been giving me some helpful email hints on when/where I can possibly catch a train.  It's also been very helpful for me to study the pictures on his blog to see exactly where he was (and what time it was) when he took a particular picture.  I've been following that up with a few reconnaissance missions down by the Thames River in order to scope out the area ahead of any attempted photo-hunts.  I've really been enjoying the challenge of railroad photography but I gotta tell ya, I'm going to like it a lot better when the weather warms up!

Anyhow, back to yesterday at Stoddard Hill and the side of the Thames River!  When I got there it seemed like the best I was going to get was a few pictures of empty railroad tracks as it was just a little too windy and overcast for me to want to stay out by the river for too long.  The sun was playing peek-a-boo with the clouds and was in more than it was out no matter what you might think by looking at the sky in this picture!

Empty Tracks
Just as I was about to pack it in for the day and continue down to Groton to get the other pictures I needed for a future post, I heard a train horn in the distance. Could it be? Were the Train Gods with me for a change?  Perhaps Sheila's scarf had brought me some luck!

P&W NR3 heading north 
Sure enough, as I looked south I was rewarded with the sight of a Providence & Worcester train coming around the corner and towards me. Woohoo!

It wasn't exactly a very long train but I wasn't complaining - it was A train!

P&W NR2 Near Stoddard Hill
I've gotten used to trying to take pictures of NECR trains which move a lot slower than this P&W one was going so I knew I was going to be lucky to get maybe one or two good shots before the train was past me.

Lead engine of P&W NR2
I think perhaps this one above qualifies as a decent shot - least ways I was pleased with it!

Back engine of P&W NR3 at Stoddard Hill

Bringing up the rear of the train was another engine which had zoomed past before I knew it!  

At least now I've got a good idea of how fast the trains move as they head towards Norwich and points north so perhaps I'll be able to get a few more shots off next time as you know that I will definitely be trying again before too long! And you can by-golly bet I'll be bringing my lucky scarf along, too!


  1. Well, I'd be quite pleased with ALL of them! My favorites are the long shots with the New England homes and the trees in the background.

    Extra Bonus Kudos to you for having the motivation to get out in that cold! Brrrr!

    Big hugs xo

  2. You know MWM and I love trains. Tomorrow we are having the day out on the East Lancs Railway to see three steam engines - Oliver Cromwell, Duke of Gloucester and Sir Lamiel which we've never seen before. Hopefully we'll get some good shots and I'll post them. :)

    Love your photos btw.

  3. No train Like any train when its cold and your waiting - must be the scarf. Nice Pics

    10-4 Willy

  4. Anonymous9:15 AM EST

    Wow, you really did well with those shots! Glad you have a lucky scarf to keep you warm...

  5. oboy! a lucky girl with a lucky scarf! tits to that!

    smiles, bee

  6. Your photographic skills are getting truly amazing. Congratulations on the great train expedition.

  7. I also like the one with the homes in the background the best. What? No photo of the lucky scarf???

    Big hugs...and thanks for the prayers for my brother. No, there is really no way to prepare my heart for the inevitable...

  8. It's no wonder you're pleased with these photos, they're gorgeous and you really got terrific shots of the train as it was going by you. Lucky scarf indeed:-) I need to find the train schedule for over here and get out there to try to take pictures like you do...need to try out my new camera more anyway! hehe xoxo

  9. On the positive side, the changing weather and lighting conditions give you a chance to practice with settings on you camera. And even if the cloud cover did come in, I still you think your framing skill covers a lot of the issues with lighting.

  10. You've captured some great shots of a moving train, Linda. How do you do that without a blurrrrr?

    I like the first photo of the empty tracks; you really put us there waiting with you for the train to come around the curve.

    Wonderful photos.

  11. I was thinking what Patti said! My favorite is the first one, too.
    I just heard on the news that there was a derailment tonight close to the Tehachapi Loop. It's a very famous bit of train history out here.

  12. I love the pics and am so proud of the lucky scarf, I feel kind of like a celebrity. Yea. Sheila

  13. Awesome shots Linda. I'm glad you waiting just a bit longer. You are getting better and better and these fast moving trains. Excellent.

    Have a terrific day. :)

  14. Good work Linda. Have you ever seen a Circus Train? I saw one years ago with paintings on the sides of the cars. Wish I had my camera then.


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