You can see a Google Map of the trip route here and at 63 miles this is one of the shorter Mid-Winter trips. This was because instead of traveling long distances I decided to include a pair of extended photo stops on the Regional Rail in the hopes of catching some Silverliner IIs and IIIs. While we were to be a bit disappointed on that front it was still a great trip.
You can view the entire set of photos in chronological order here: http://acm.jhu.edu/~sthurmovik/Railpics/09-12-28_MID-WINTER_TRIP_IX/-Thumbnails.html
The Trip started off with a little informal event. I was looking for a way to get some front end video on a PATCO Express run without getting bitched at by the operator. The solution was to involve team play where strategically placed railfans should block the view of the operator with a newspaper allowing the railfan with the camera to shoot unmolested. That part of the plan worked like a charm, but unfortunately PATCO had canceled all of its express services in the week between Christmas and New Year. Anyway, here is the result, a video of a standard local run between Woodcrest and Haddonfield through a very dirty window.
So while PATCO was a bit of a bust the official trip began with a Regional Rail ride to Jenkintown where we would hang out for a bit to photograph the parade of RRD trains passing through the busy junction there. While out on the 4-track Reading trunk line I began to take some photos out the front window before opting to get some video through 16th St junction as we paced another RR train. Unfortunately an asshole trainee in hanging out in the front cab had other ideas.
See why I might be a little hostile to the "concerns" of SEPTA crews about half-width cabs on the S-Vs?
JENKIN interlocking at Jenkintown is the junction between the SEPTA Main Line (R's 1,2 and 5) and the Neshaminy Line (R3). Even though it was recently rebuilt and outfitted with useless Metro North style signals. Here is our R5 train, jerk crew and all, departing Jenkintown taking the left hand route on a Cab Speed signal.
JENKIN tower still stands and there is more than ehough hot SEPTA MU action. One can consider Jenkintown as the Mineola or South Norwalk of the SEPTA system.
As the former movable point diamond was replaced by a pair of turnouts just about the only interesting bit of signaling left at JENKIN is this twin mast of Safetran Unilens solid state searchlight signals needed to fit under the platform canopy.
Jenkintown could also be considered the Metro Park of the Reading, providing an important Suburban stop for its premier Philadelphia to New York train, The Crusader. As such the station was fitted with full length covered platforms, a handsome granite station building, and convenient facilities for drop off and pick up. BTW can you spot the railfans in this photo?
There was some weird single tracking going on on the R3 so here we see SEPTA S-IV #170 arriving inbound on the wrong platform.
Front view of JENKIN tower. The tower had its top floor replaced around 1990, but had probably been closed as an active tower sometime before then. It's functions were transfered to the WIND panel in WAYNE tower.
SEPTA S-IV #446 brings up the rear on an outbound R2 train. About 2 miles up the Main Line it will diverge at CARMEL interlocking onto the Warminster Line.
Here S-IV #452 brings up the rear of an R3 train running on the proper track outbound from Center City as it takes the right hand route at JENKIN.
SEPTA S-IV #294 arrives from the Main Line with three SEPTA crew-members stuffed into the front cab.
SEPTA S-IV #128 then showed up next on the train we would need to take to Fern Rock. There was some sort of service disruption going on so these trains were pretty full. Of course the front cab had its usual compliment of three SEPTA crewmembers. Does anyone notice a pattern here?