Normally when friends want me to go on road trips with them I add railfan stops as a requirement for my participation. So when my friend asked if I would accompany him to the Harrisburg Horse Expo I figured it would be a good opportunity to snag some PRR Middle Division action at the town of Newport, PA about 10 miles up the Juniata River from the confluence with the Susquehanna at Duncannon. This was followed up with a short visit to the Harrisburg fast fuel pad which sits adjacent to the Harrisburg intermodal yard about 2 miles east of the Rockville Bridge. You can view the full set of photos here.
We kick off with a bit of an aside. In Mach, 2016, CSX replaced a landmark 1885 Whipple through truss bridge that spanned the NEC just south of Bayview yard carrying the CSX track to the Port of Baltimore coal export terminal. Aware of this I made sure to get a photo of the bridge from the back of an Amtrak Regional train before the replacement. Fortunately a similar truss bridge still stands about a mile or so further down on the same line.
That Regional trip was also my first opportunity to be hauled by Veterans ACS-86 #642.
Moving on to the non-electrified portion of the PRR, Newport, PA is home
to PORT interlocking which consists of a complete two track crossover
and a single switch to an industrial track. A classic PRR signal bridge
still stands for westbound movements.
Here we see NS C40-9Ws #9714 and #8939 hauling a cut of gondolas down the easy grade towards Harrisburg.
This was soon followed by a westbound manifest train led by SD70M-2 #2683 and standard cab C40-9 #8767.
Included in the consist was Reading and Northern coal hopper #7948.
A short while later aging NS C40-8W #8369 was single haulin' a train of autoracks westbound towards Altoona.
At the Harrisburg Fuel pad a westbound train had just cleared the MP 107 intermediate signals, not bothering to stop for fuel.
An eastbound loaded coal train with NS C40-9W #9375 and friends had
decided to stop and top off while sister C40-9W #9083 looked on from the
So called "Fast" fuel pads located on main line tracks in terminal areas
were a feature of the North American Class 1 railroad efficiency
revolution allowing road power to be run from origin to destination
without needing to be swapped out for servicing en route.
That's all for today. Next week we visit Amtrak at Perryville, MD.