Friday, September 14, 2012

Railroad Photography

Brookhaven, Mississippi 

Above is the set-up shot. Nice huh? All I need is a south-bound freight train rolling by that lovely old Brookhaven station for a great train picture. So I waited.  I had no idea how long I would have to wait, but I wanted the perfect shot that was dancing in my head. I wait some more. A headlight down the track! I get in position, but the locomotive in the distance stops, and then backs up; just a yard engine switching cars.

I wait some more. Finally I see a headlight in the distance and I see ditch lights so I know this is not a switch engine. The crossing guards sound off, and in just a few seconds the train is on me, moving right through downtown Brookhaven at about 60 mph.  I  got off about five frames as the engine roared by.

In the excitement though, I panned on the fast moving locomotive, completely forgetting about the station, so instead of a nice shot of the locomotive passing the brick station, I have an very ordinary shot of a train passing, well, me

Perhaps in your imagination you can put the locomotive below into the picture of the old brick station with the nice clouds. That's all I can do after waiting two hours. By then, rain was approaching so I packed up my camera and headed back to the car forming dark thoughts about the vagaries of railroad photography. Maybe next time.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks. Trains do tend to be reliably interesting. For one thing, I never expected to see a Canadian National locomotive in Mississippi.

  2. Sometimes we get caught up in the excitement and forget what our objective was, but still two nice shots

    1. Thanks Don, and I agree. In the rush and the roar and excitement of that big locomotive bearing down on me, I completely forgot what I was trying to do. Next time I am in a situation like that, I will put the camera on a tripod, frame it up and stand by with the remote release in my hand.


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