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West Virginia

NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA

In June of 1988 Conrail began shifting its interchange with Norfolk Southern in the Northeast from Potomac Yard in Washington, D. C. to Hagerstown, Maryland. South of Hagerstown, NS trains then traversed the northern end of the former Norfolk and Western Hagerstown District or Valley Line to Front Royal, where they could head east on the former Southern Railway Harrisonburg branch or “B” Line to the ex-Southern Washington to Atlanta main line at Manassas. In 1999 NS acquired rights on the former Conrail Lurgan branch north of Hagerstown that connected NS to their new Conrail trackage at Harrisburg. All of this has transformed the north end of the Valley Line from a secondary main line to the NS main line between the Northeast and the Southeast that can host up to twenty trains in twenty-four hours. “NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA” shows a day and a half of continuous action between the junction of the “B” Line and Valley Line at Riverton Junction in Front Royal and the Potomac River at Shepherdstown in April of 2011. “NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA” is 67 minutes in length.  This DVD can be watched with or without narration.

Price: $30.95

NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA DVD

In June of 1988 Conrail began shifting its interchange with Norfolk Southern in the Northeast from Potomac Yard in Washington, D. C. to Hagerstown, Maryland. South of Hagerstown, NS trains then traversed the northern end of the former Norfolk and Western Hagerstown District or Valley Line to Front Royal, where they could head east on the former Southern Railway Harrisonburg branch or “B” Line to the ex-Southern Washington to Atlanta main line at Manassas. In 1999 NS acquired rights on the former Conrail Lurgan branch north of Hagerstown that connected NS to their new Conrail trackage at Harrisburg. All of this has transformed the north end of the Valley Line from a secondary main line to the NS main line between the Northeast and the Southeast that can host up to twenty trains in twenty-four hours. “NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA” shows a day and a half of continuous action between the junction of the “B” Line and Valley Line at Riverton Junction in Front Royal and the Potomac River at Shepherdstown in April of 2011. “NS Valley Line north of Front Royal, VA” is 67 minutes in length.  This DVD can be watched with or without narration.

Price: $30.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD

The Tadpole - NS Kenova District

Norfolk Southern’s Kenova District between Williamson, West Virginia and Portsmouth, Ohio has long been known as the Tadpole.   The district’s name comes from Kenova, West Virginia, where this former Norfolk and Western track crosses the Ohio River on a massive double tracked, 4000-foot long, 100-foot high trestle. Described by Trains Magazine as a “conveyor belt for westbound coal’ in the 1960s, today, this busy line handles a mix of loaded coal trains running in both directions, grain trains, mixed carload manifests, and thanks to the recently completed Heartland Corridor clearance project, double stack container trains. Except for the crossing of the Ohio River at Kenova, the track from Williamson to Portsmouth is level or downgrade all the way and passes through six tunnels. The superbly engineered Kenova District along the Tug Fork, Big Sandy, and Ohio Rivers sees some of the heaviest trains in the U. S. This program shows thirty hours of action between Williamson and Kenova on Norfolk Southern’s Kenova District or Tadpole in April of 2011. “The Tadpole – NS Kenova District” is 80 minutes in length.  This DVD can be watched with or without narration. 

Price: $32.95

The Tadpole - NS Kenova District DVD

Norfolk Southern’s Kenova District between Williamson, West Virginia and Portsmouth, Ohio has long been known as the Tadpole.   The district’s name comes from Kenova, West Virginia, where this former Norfolk and Western track crosses the Ohio River on a massive double tracked, 4000-foot long, 100-foot high trestle. Described by Trains Magazine as a “conveyor belt for westbound coal’ in the 1960s, today, this busy line handles a mix of loaded coal trains running in both directions, grain trains, mixed carload manifests, and thanks to the recently completed Heartland Corridor clearance project, double stack container trains. Except for the crossing of the Ohio River at Kenova, the track from Williamson to Portsmouth is level or downgrade all the way and passes through six tunnels. The superbly engineered Kenova District along the Tug Fork, Big Sandy, and Ohio Rivers sees some of the heaviest trains in the U. S. This program shows thirty hours of action between Williamson and Kenova on Norfolk Southern’s Kenova District or Tadpole in April of 2011. “The Tadpole – NS Kenova District” is 80 minutes in length.  This DVD can be watched with or without narration. 

Price: $32.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD

Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, and North Carolina

Trip Date: 
03/29/2011 to 04/08/2011

Spring 2011 Trip Plan
 
Weather permitting, below are the plans for my 2001 spring trip.
 
Monday, 3/28/11.
            Leave home late morning and drive to Ashland, Virginia.
 
Tuesday, 3.29/11
            Videotape CSX and Amtrak at Ashland from late morning until ~5 p.m. on Wednesday. Videotape at night at the Gwathmey Baptist Church parking lot. Drive a couple of hours towards Front Royal, VA when done.
 
Thursday, 3/31/11.
            Explore NS Hagerstown District between Front Royal - Riverton Junction and Shenandoah Junction looking for a place to shoot at night.
 
Friday, 4/1/11
            Videotape NS between Front Royal and Shenandoah Junction from ~8 a.m. until ~11 a.m. on Saturday. Then drive towards Erwin, TE on the former Clinchfield.
 
Sunday, 4/3/11
            Explore CSX Blue Ridge Sub between Erwin and Marion, NC. Looking for places to move around without missing trains and a place to shoot at night. One possibility to shoot at night is a parking lot along the tracks at North Poplar, MP 148.2 May hike into Nolichucky Gorge and shoot a train or two. 
 
Monday, 4/4/11. 
Videotape Blue Ridge Sub for 24 hours, probably south of Spruce Pine and then catch several trains around Erwin or Marion or both, not worrying about missing trains. Tuesday afternoon, drive to Williamson, WV.
 
Wednesday, 4/6/11
            Get up early. Check out Webb, WV Baptist Church parking lot for shooting at night if not done the previous day. If not okay do some more exploring heading north towards Pritchard. If okay, begin videotaping at Williamson. Videotape NS Kenova District for ~28 hours. Then drive home over Thursday night, sleeping as needed.

CSX in the New River Gorge

“CSX in the New River Gorge” shows a day and a half of awesome action in and around the New River Gorge on CSX’s New River subdivision between Prince and Deepwater, West Virginia in March of 2008. The spectacular New River Gorge is known as the grand canyon of the East. Today this 137-year old, water level line is carrying more tonnage than anytime in the past 15 years as coal to the port of Newport News has increased over 50 per cent in the last year as export coal undergoes another of its boom periods. “CSX in the New River Gorge” is 96 minutes in length.  This DVD has the option on being watched with or without narration.

Price: $34.95

CSX in the New River Gorge DVD

“CSX in the New River Gorge” shows a day and a half of awesome action in and around the New River Gorge on CSX’s New River subdivision between Prince and Deepwater, West Virginia in March of 2008. The spectacular New River Gorge is known as the grand canyon of the East. Today this 137-year old, water level line is carrying more tonnage than anytime in the past 15 years as coal to the port of Newport News has increased over 50 per cent in the last year as export coal undergoes another of its boom periods. “CSX in the New River Gorge” is 96 minutes in length.  This DVD has the option on being watched with or without narration.

Price: $34.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD

CSX Mountain Sub - the Historic West End DVD

This video shows the trains and awesome action on CSX's Mountain Subdivision, the B&O's historic original crossing of the Alleghenies west of Cumberland, Maryland, formerly known as the West End, in April of 2005.  With manned helper districts, two manned towers, and many color position light signals still in use, this line at times looks like a relic of the 1960's.  The Mountain Sub today still handles many coal trains and one merchandise train each way and features CSX's biggest and newest power.  104 minutes.  The DVD on this program has the option of being watched with or without narration. 

Price: $34.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD

The Pokey - Crown Jewel of the East DVD

This video shows the traffic and operations at many locations on Norfolk Southern's Pocahontas District in West Virginia.  Often referred to as "The Pokey", the Pocahontas District extends from Bluefield, West Virginia, to Williamson, a distance of 99 miles.  This line is arguably the most scenic and accessible of all the heavy duty mountain main lines in the East.  It has a busy helper grade, countless sharp curves along the Elkhorn and Tug Fork Rivers, color position light signals, abandoned coaling towers, and nineteen tunnels, most of which are easily accessible from local roads.  This line was the heart of the former Norfolk and Western and reminds us of the Fraser and Thomson River Canyons and Cajon Pass in the West in that you never run out of places to take pictures.  This video shows two days and a night of awesome action on "The Pokey" in April of 2003.  161 minutes. 

Price: $40.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD

CSX's Alleghany Sub - Heart of the Former C&O DVD

This video shows three full days and a night of awesome action on CSX's Alleghany subdivision between Clifton Forge, Virginia and Hinton, West Virginia in April of 2003.  The scenic Alleghany Subdivision crosses the Eastern Continental Divide in the Allegheny Mountains on the Virginia - West Virginia border.  This spectacularly engineered line with many double track tunnels and huge fills was the heart of the former Chesapeake and Ohio and it carried a huge volume of coal, merchandise traffic, and passengers to Washington, D.C., Richmond, and the port of Newport News.  Today, this 130 year old line with its 0.57% ruling grade against loaded coal and grain trains still carries many high tonnage trains across the Eastern Continental Divide to Newport News and other points in the Southeast.  93 minutes. 

Price: $34.95

Attributes

  • Video Format: DVD