Steam Specials and Passenger Extras in 2014 DVD
2014 was a good year for steam operations and passenger specials. Cameras from Diverging Clear Productions covered a number of operations in the Midwest and in the south throughout the year, and this program presents a wide variety of operations.
We start on March weekend as Norfolk Southern’s Southern Railway Heritage Unit number 8099 substituted for 2-8-0 #630 on a pair of trips out of Chattanooga. A rainy Saturday found the train on a round trip to Attalla, Alabama. Appropriately the sun was shining bright on Sunday as the train made a northbound run up the famous Rathole Division to Oneida, Tennessee. #8099 is a contemporary General Electric ES44AC, and looks great in the classic green of the Southern’s passenger trains.
We next move to Michigan, where June found former Pere Marquette 2-8-4 back in steam after a multi-year rebuild. We caught three runs from Owosso to Alma over three days during Train Expo at the Steam Railroading Institute. For the first two runs, #1225 was sporting a whistle from a Norfolk & Western J Class 4-8-4, and the big Berkshire never sounded better in our humble opinion.
Sharing duties with #1225 during Train Expo was Nickel Plate Road 2-8-4 #765, another Berkshire of the Van Swearingen design. We filmed two round trip runs of #765 from Owosso to Alma. Introducing the segments on the two sister 2-8-4’s is a short introduction on the Van Swearingen design, featuring vintage film of the Nickel Plate Road engines in operation.
In addition to the two Berkshires on the mainline, three smaller engines were in operation at Train Expo: Lehigh Valley Coal Company 0-6-0T #126, American Viscose Company 0-4-0T #6, and Little River Railroad 4-6-2 #110. A short segment presents all three engines in operation.
We next stop at the Monticello Railway Museum in central Illinois, where we find Southern Railway 2-8-0 #401 in operation. This locomotive operates the third weekend of each month between May and October, and we selected some of the best scenes filmed over the course of four months. We worked with the engine crews to get some fine performances from the 1907 Baldwin, and also used an 18 foot camera crane for some unique views of the engine in motion.
We next see an Iowa Pacific special run in conjunction with Amtrak and the Illinois Central Railroad Heritage Association in September. The special consisted of two full length dome cars and a round end observation car added to the end of the southbound Saluki from Chicago to Carbondale, Illinois; returning on the northbound Illini the same afternoon. The cars are painted in the chocolate and orange scheme of the Illinois Central’s passenger trains of yesterday, and look right at home on the old Illinois Central mainline.
The next segment takes us back to Monticello, where we climb in the cab of restored Canadian National FPA4 #6789. The Montreal built Alco rarely operates at Monticello, but got its turn in the spotlight when the museum’s Wabash F7 was in the shop for an overhaul. Trackside scenes join the cab footage in this 10 minute segment on a rare Alco in operation.
From Illinois we return to Chattanooga, where we find Southern Railway 2-8-2 #4501 back in operation for the first time since 1998. We filmed the locomotive during a pair of October runs between Chattanooga and Summerville, Georgia, on the one time mainline of the Central Of Georgia Railroad. Cool mornings made for beautiful exhaust plumes, as well as some early morning fog on Sunday. We visited some of the scenic highlights of the line, including the reverse curve at Rock Spring and the Missionary Ridge Grade near Rossville. With a three-chime whistle and painted in the black paint of Southern’s freight locomotives, the 1911 Baldwin looks and sounds great!
This program has a little of something for everyone!
Running Time 90 Minutes
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|Runtime:||1 Hour, 30 Mins ($0.20/min)|
|Producer:||Diverging Clear Productions|
|Aspect Ratio:||Wide Screen|
|Region Code:||0 Worldwide NTSC|ITEM NOTES REGARDING THIS PRODUCER
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