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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

09-10-24 PHOTOS: Ivyland Fall Foliage

 The New Hope and Ivyland seems to be in the process of turning a yearly ritual into an annual tradition by running its Fall Foilage Express trains all the way from the R2 station in Warminster to their usual base of operations in New Hope, PA. The trip is not cheap, costing about $40 per person for a round trip, and it is also not steam, normal motive power being a GP30, however it is still a great ride and the GP30 is more classic than a lot of diesels.

These photos were taken in 2009 in conjunction with an informal West Jersey Chapter NRHS trip. Unfortunately the weather was somewhat dismal, but at least the precipitation stayed in the mist category instead of outright rain and drizzle. Despite the grayness this was the last possible week for the trip so I pressed forward with taking pictures in the less than ideal conditions.

The all day event consisted of riding the FFE to New Hope, then taking a steam round trip to Lahaska and back, then catching the last return FFE back to Warminster.

You can see the full set of photos here in chronibetical order.

We begin with a shot of SEPTA S-IV #308 which delivered the majority of the informal trippers to the Warminster station.

It happened to be operated by the last former Reading RR employee still serving with SEPTA's T&E department.

Also hanging out at Warminster was single unit S-IV #298.

The Fall Foilage Express soon arrived, backing about 2 cars into the high level platform.

Departing Warminster we passed the turned signals for the new STREET interlocking that would be placed in service in March 010.

Not even the crappy weather could keep local railfans at home.

The bad light encouraged me to take more videos such as this one of the train as it hit the Alhouse Rd grade crossing. The horn on the Gp30 is clearly no K5LA.

Despite the gray weather the leaf color was as advertised, in this case overlooking the Little Neshaminy Creek.

Here is the semi-preserved station at Rushland.

Somewhere in this area the train passed through a graceful S-Curve.

Approaching Wycombe we passed what appeared to be an old mill.

On one of the numerous siding tracks we passed a long line of stored former LIRR Ping Pong cars that were were still waiting a return to service. Also in the line is an old tank car and a SEPTA painted Reading Blueliner.

Here is another video of the train passing over a small creek as it rounds a large curve.

At the Lahaska Station we met steam locomotive #40 and the regular tourist train waiting as our train passed it on the siding track. This is actually a pretty rare event on the NH&I as normally there is only ever one train running at a time.

Here is a video of the meet between the FFEx and the normal Steam run. Watch what the conductors of the respective trains do as they pass XD

I thought this guy had a pretty cool lawn.

More horn action as the train crosses Aquetong Road.

Crossing the Great Spring Creek the FFEx entered New Hope.

2198 then ran around the FFEx train to be in a position to pull it back to Warminster for the mid-day departure.

Wow, they sell cab rides? Perhaps some transit agencies should try this to raise some revenue.

Once at the station all of the informal railfans posed for a group photo.

Soon after the regular steam train returned being pulled by #40 running tender first. #40 is a former Cliffside Railroad 2-8-0 freight locomotive.

After lunch I took one of the regular Steam excursions to Lahaska and back. Here is a photo at Lahaska of #40 running around the train on the siding.

After returning to New Hope #40 pulled off and ran around for some water.

Here's a more standard view of #40.

It then ran around to the front of the train for another departure to meet the returning FFEx at Lahaska.

Here it is next to the New Hope station looking steamy.

And finally departing for Lahaska.

Sitting over by the shoopes was the general semblance of #3028, which was a former NdeM 4-8-4.

Also on the roster was GE C30-7 #7087, an increasingly rare model in its own right.

While the Lahaska train turned the FFEx would wait down next to 7087 and 3028.

Here 2198 pulls forward onto the platform after the departure of the steam train to board passengers for the final trip to Warminster today.

On the return trip I saw this cool rainbow tree.

As well as these pink ones.

We passed number 40 again at Lahaska.

A local artist has constructed a cool ship themed tree house adjacent to the RoW.

Here is a quick video of the returning FFEx rounding a curve.

Here we see the beautifully restored station in Wycombe.

And the bridge over the Neshaminy Creek.

Approaching Warminster we pass one of the freight customers at Ivyland which take delivers of various tank cars.

One little leftover bit of Reading RR flavor was this old school fixed distant signal at Ivyland.

If you are wondering what the inside of the former Reading RR coaches looked like, here you go.

I learned that hanging out in the open car proved to be a lot more fun.

Entering Warminster station we see S-IV single #298 we well as #353 which will return us to Philadelphia.

#2198 pulled right into the high level platform. Wow, I'm surprised more people don't end up driving onto the tracks there 0.0

The R system was clearly dysfunctional in 2009 as this R2 train was signed as an R1.

A properly signed R2 express on the storage track.

I had some time before departure so I walked down to take some photos of the old school CP-WARM.

And classic Reading style automatic signal 571. Both of which were removed in the re-signaling project.

Anyway, that's it for the 2009 NH&I Fall Foilage Express. Stay turned next time for some photos I took while home for Thanksgiving.

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