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Saturday, February 6, 2016

16-02-06 PHOTOS: Empire State of Mind

The month of February has been an opportunity to travel to the NY Capitol Region for an extended weekend of skiing, college hockey and railfan activities. This year, due to atypically low snow levels in the Adirondacks, I was only able to peruse two of those three, but I didn't mind since that meant more time to railfan ;-)

Most of the pics involve Amtrak's Hudson Line used by the Empire Service trains. There is a general reconstruction project taking place at the Albany-Renssalaer terminal complex to increase both speeds and the number of tracks. I also captured some of the work on the double track project between Albany and CP-169 west of Schenectady. You can view the full set here.

We begin with my last ride behind an AEM-7 in Amtrak service as #915 shows up with my early morning Regional train in Baltimore.

My Empire train suffered an initial terminal delay of about 20 minutes because of work at the INWOOD movable bridge that rendered the switch there non-functional and the Empire Line effectivly a single track railroad.

At Poughkeepie I caught heritage painted P32AC-DM #704 hauling Empire train #242.

Classic New York Central signal bridge at MP 79.

CP-114 at Hudson, NY with a CSX geep in the yard.

Attention Amtrak, I found where all your missing platform stools had wound up.

The Alfred H. Newman Smith Bridge spanning the high speed section of Amtrak's Hudson Line. North of CP-125, where CSX freight traffic departs via the Schodak Branch, speeds increase to 110mph from 95. Prior to Amtrak's lease of the entire Hudson Line from CSX, this section had also been maintained by Amtrak. 

The rebuilt CP-142 at Albany-Rensselaer. LED searchlights have replaced the GRS SA electro-mechanical models. 

Amtrak P32AC-DM #706 headed into the yard at Albany-Rensselaer. Note the new platform extension work as well as the rebuilding of CP-143.

Amtrak P32AC-DM #717 on the main track at Albany Renssalaer relaying with a single car in tow via the new CP-141.

Amtrak P42DC #22 about to be swapped off the head end of some longer through train.

The next day, Amtrak P32AC-DM's #717 and #706 again north of the station next to the new platform with a single car in tow.

Work on CP-143 north of the station to support the new 4th track (note the double slip switch).

Amtrak P32AC-DM #707 departing southbound through the new CP-141 with an Empire Service train.

Grading work for the second track west of Albany is evident at the MP 145 automatic signal on West Albany Hill. This grade was the steepest on the NY Central's "Water Level Route" between New York and Chicago was a famous test for the NY Central's premier passenger power like J-class Hudsons and S-Class Niagaras. Of course the 1.6% slope would have been sneezed at by PRR locomotives, which could climb that without breaking a sweat. 

The rails have been dropped for the second track at the MP 153 intermediate signal as Amtrak P42DC #77 passes by with long distance Empire Train #281.

Clear signals at the rebuilt CP-142 and CP-141 for Amtrak P32AC-DM #702, about to depart early on a Sunday morning. 

Some bonus photos taking during my layover at Penn Station of the West Side Yard from the High Line park. First, LIRR M3's in the WSY.

And lastly, the new (7) Hudson Yards station headhouse.

Well that's all for this adventure. See you next time.

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