This is one of the last rolls of slides that I shot.
1. Arriving at Panther, this train was speeding east. It took some fast driving, but we stopped on the bridge at Hull for this shot of coal train 746 behind 2540-8727-8905. No. 746 is 105 loads and 14,500 tons. The Litwar mine is in the background.
2. No. 746 exits Gordon Tunnel and crosses US 52 and the Tug Fork at Rogers.
3. No. 746 stops at Caples to set off 8727 and get a helper. “Caples”, “Wharf” and “Farm” are the signals here.
4. No. 746 stops at Caples to set off 8727 and get a helper. View 2.
5. No. 746 stops at Caples to set off 8727 and get a helper. View 3.
6. No. 746 barrels through Welch. The building served as the depot after the passenger loop and depot was abandoned downtown. Maintenance of way uses it now. Welch Tunnel is just above the truck.
7. No. 746 passes the “Powhatan” signal at Kyle.
8. No. 746 passes the “Crozier” signal at Elkhorn.
9. Upgrade at Switchback. The CPLs here were replaced with Southern-style color lights and relocated years ago only to be replaced again!
10. J5N with 8165-8152 is pushing 746 across US 52 at Maybeury.
11. Empty train 757 behind 9640-2687 rumbles downgrade westbound a lot faster than 746 was going up the hill. Switchback.
12. We were caught by surprise at Switchback by w/b 23Q behind 9289-CN 2452-CN 2294. Note the tapered long hood on C40-8M 2452 (built 1990).
13. CN ES44DC 2294 trails the pack. The old iron N&W standard whistle sign was the attraction to this location. Switchback.
14. NS 9273-8970 load at Arcelor-Mittal’s Dans Branch mine at Eckman. Roderfield.
15. No. 23Q being an intermodal train has gone around 757 at Farm. Exiting Roderfield Tunnel.
16. No. 23Q being an intermodal train has gone around 757 at Farm. Exiting Roderfield Tunnel. View 2.
17. NS 9640-2687 on No. 757 have picked up 8727 previously set off at Farm. We don’t know the story on that move. Crossing the Tug between Roderfield and Laurel Tunnels. The sun is going down and we’re going home.
Train images used by permission of Everett N Young