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Classic Standard Cab EMD Action on the Former Northeast D&H Mainlines

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Published on May 12, 2011

It is hard to believe a Class I railroad in 2011 employs so much SD40-2 and other relic EMD power to front line service! Witness CP, ICE, DME, Lease, and Heritage GP/SD units along the Canadian Pacific Northeast in New York and Pennsylvania. We visit a widespread of locations as well as catching an NS train on the Southern Tier and New York Susquehanna and Western on the return from Syracuse. We start out on May 9th along the Canadian Subdivision, which is battling flood waters along Lake Champlain resulting in many speed restrictions. Later that day, the line would be shut down due to water over the rails between CPC 79-80, just north of Whitehall, NY.

First up, we chase 252 south on its way to work at Whitehall Yard, then capture it one point south of there.

252 -- 5/9/11
CP SD40-2 5690
HLCX SD40-2 6206 (ex-BC Rail)
CP SD40-2 6054

69 -- Amtrak Adirondack
AMTK P42DC 54

While Amtrak pulled into Whitehall about 25 minutes late after receiving a plethora of 10 MPH speed restrictions, 252 snuck out of the yard and we had just enough time to beat it to Fort Ann. 69 was the last train to operate through the flood zones before the line shut down. I bet passengers were nervous crossing water-covered rails at 10 MPH!

643 -- 5/9/11
NREX SD40-2 5777
NREX SD40-2 6309
ICE SD40-2 6433
CP SD40-2 6021

Unfortunately, 643 (ethanol empties) got tied down in Whitehall Yard, barring us from chasing the train. However, we were able to catch another freight further south along Pan Am Southern's Freight Main Line District 3 where CP and PAS meet at XO tower in Mechanicville.

450 -- 5/9/11
CP GP40-2 4653 (ex-Boston and Maine)
CITX SD40-2 3177
DME SD40-2 6054

The next day was spent in the Binghamton area, where the CP Freight Subdivision, CP Sunbury Subdivision, and the NS Southern Tier, as well as the NYS&W all come together at one point.

The next day, we start off the morning at the Belden Tunnel with none other than an NS automotive / intermodal run through that travels from Chicago to Albany, NS 206 / CP 938.

938 -- 5/10/11
NS SD70M 2642
NS D9-40CW 9864

Then, over at the Sunbury Sub, a short all-intermodal CP 159 is about to enter Binghamton with an exBNSF lease on the point. The locomotive has a nice Leslie RS-3L!

159 -- 5/10/11
CITX SD40-2 3036
CP SD40-2 6043

Meanwhile, 12T left Binghamton bound for the NS Southern Tier. We caught up to the train at Owego thanks to an H88 (with two NS D9-40CW's) heading eastbound, causing 12T to stop on the siding. We catch 12T throttling up coming off the sighting at the 236 interlocking. The ex-Union Pacific lease leader still wears a clean shield on the nose! This locomotive ALSO has a nice Leslie RS-3L!

12T -- 5/10/11
HLCX SD60 5984
NS D9-40CW 9283
NS D9-40C 8772

Then we swing back over to the Belden Tunnel to catch 253 grinding up hill in full throttle, which is probably the best catch of the trip, with 5 classic EMD's in notch 8 with the sanders dumping...

253 -- 5/10/11
CP SD40-2 5698
CP SD40-2 6054
HLCX SD40-2 6206 (ex-BC Rail)
CEFX SD40-2 2797
STLH GP38-2 7308

Following right behind is an NS run-through freight 30T / 931 that travels from the NS system, over CP, and all the way onto the CN.

931 -- 5/10/11
NS D9-40CW 9648
NS D9-40CW 9945
NS ES40DC 7702

While waiting for 255 to depart, the yard local was making moves on the east end of the yard with two CP GP9u locomotives, 1651 and 1564.

Shortly thereafter, 255 / 39T got the okay to depart toward Buffalo. NY along the NS Southern Tier. The train sure was rocketing westward at 50 MPH, if not, faster than that!

255 / 39T -- 5/10/11
CP AC4400CW 9818
CITX SD40-2 3065
ICE SD40-2 6423
CP SD40-2 5677

On the way back to the CP yard to check the status of 258, NYSW BH-2 was on the return from Syracuse.

BH-2 -- 5/10/11
NYSW SD40T-2 3016
NYSW SD40-2 3018
NYSW SD45 3634

Unfortunately, a chase of 258 down the Sunbury Sub and Reading and Northern was not worthwhile given the train only had two widecab GE's and 3 cars, thus making it harder to chase without a heavy train. Also, train 158 was also slightly delayed due to problems near Dalton on the Sunbury Sub. We do catch 258 pulling out of Hop Bottom and heading past D11 yard power sitting at Taylor. Someone decided to conveniently park their truck—coincidentally a Delaware and Hudson truck—right in the way of the shot!

258 -- 5/10/11
CP AC4400CW 8572
CP AC4400CW 9532

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