Thursday, October 18, 2007

An Evening Out

My wonderful wife gave the night off last night to do a little shopping and some train photography. Usually on Wednesdays, Sarah brings Carlos to the church for Sparks and then I stay in town after work and bring him home. But this time she decided to stay at the church playground with Jeremiah & Natalie and let me go out by myself for the evening. So with camera, tripod and radio in hand, off I went!

I was able to hang out at two different spots in Salem for a couple hours and take some evenings shots. Unfortunately, but the time any trains came along it was getting rather dark and my camera doesn’t take very good evening pictures. Not even the trash train (V60) was on time. But I did get a couple of non-train railroad pics. The first stopping point was at the Union Street grade crossing. There are actually two sets of tracks here; I chose the one furthest from the skate park, mainly because it afforded a great view both up and down the tracks. Although I didn’t have to wait long before my train came along, I was still experimenting was the settings on my camera and the only shots I did get really didn’t come out good at all. Low light + point-and-shoot-camera + fast train = crappy pictures. Which is ironic considering that one of the engines was a GE Dash 9-40CW, affectionately known as a Crap-9.

After a little while and quick hello to Lori, who stopped by on her way to scrapbooking at the church (hope you had fun, Lori!), I moved on to a side street just off of 4th. It was the road leading into TimberTruss and this spot was even better. Not only could I look down the track in both directions, but one had a nice gentle curve that would probably have lent itself to great photos in daylight. Even better though, straight down the track I could see the signals that could give me some indication of when to expect a train. A local switcher went by a couple times, and the second time the engineer even called out of the window to me to let me know that they would be coming by again soon. But alas, the rapidly fading light didn’t allow me to stay much longer. This picture is perhaps the best shot of the night. I enjoyed the evening though. It was my first real opportunity to use my scanner to listen to the railroad traffic and have the camera, too. Thanks for the night out, sweetheart!

Night Sentinels

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