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Day and Night with the Devil

Back on the 3rd and 5th of August, 80 cars of loaded ethanol made their way over the New England Central and Providence & Worcester Railroads, and were delivered to their destination in Providence, Rhode Island.  Well, on both days I managed to get shots of the two moonshine moves from the same spot.  One was at night, and the second was in hazy summertime daylight.  The symbol used for these moves on the Providence & Worcester is K666 – borrowed from the actual CP symbol of 666 before it’s delivered to VTR in Whitehall, NY, and CSX’s K prefix for unit commodity trains.

The first cut of 40 cars made their way down the New England Central in the late evening, then were handed off to the P&W at New London.  After Jill & I put the kids to bed, I headed out to try and catch the train heading north along the Thames River.  I ended up near MP7 in Ledyard, where I set up on the river side of the tracks, and got a shot (after quite long wait and quite a few mosquito bites) as the train headed out of the darkness, and into range of the Lumedyne.  With the speed of the train, and the late time, I decided this was the only shot of the evening, and headed home.

A couple days later the second cut of 40 cars made their way south on the NECR.  This time, things were delayed a bit, and the move was to take place around lunchtime.  So I decided to get a shot at the same spot I did the night shot – right near MP7.  Of course, the advantage to shooting in the daylight was I wasn’t limited to one shot from that spot.  So I got shots as they progressed north along the Thames into Preston.

Providence & Worcester loaded ethanol train K666 heads north through Ledyard, CT on a dark night along the Thames River (Lumedyne flash)
Providence & Worcester loaded ethanol train K666 heads north through Ledyard, CT on a dark night along the Thames River (Lumedyne flash)
REF#:20100803-02-_MG_9362.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:03 22:34:13
Aperturef/7.1
Exposure Time 0.005 s (1/200)
Focal Length (mm)18.00 (18/1)
ISO1600
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester loaded ethanol train K666 heads north through Ledyard, CT on a dark night along the Thames River (Lumedyne flash)

Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
REF#:20100805-03-_MG_9458.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:52:49
Aperturef/8.0
Exposure Time 0.002 s (1/500)
Focal Length (mm)114.00 (114/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon

Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon.  This was at the same spot as the night shot.
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon. This was at the same spot as the night shot.
REF#:20100805-04-_MG_5862.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 40D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:51:34
Aperturef/8.0
Exposure Time 0.003 s (1/400)
Focal Length (mm)18.00 (18/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon. This was at the same spot as the night shot.

Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
REF#:20100805-05-_MG_9470.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:53:21
Aperturef/8.0
Exposure Time 0.003 s (1/400)
Focal Length (mm)82.00 (82/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon

Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon
REF#:20100805-06-_MG_9478.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:53:57
Aperturef/8.0
Exposure Time 0.003 s (1/400)
Focal Length (mm)179.00 (179/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads north along the Thames River in Ledyard, CT on a hazy afternoon

Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads into Preston, CT on a hazy afternoon
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads into Preston, CT on a hazy afternoon
REF#:20100805-09-_MG_9502.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:54:36
Aperturef/10.0
Exposure Time 0.002 s (1/500)
Focal Length (mm)179.00 (179/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
Providence & Worcester train K666, a 40 car loaded ethanol train, heads into Preston, CT on a hazy afternoon

A look at all of PW train K666 in both Preston and Ledyard, CT
A look at all of PW train K666 in both Preston and Ledyard, CT
REF#:20100805-10-_MG_9516.jpg
Taken withCanon EOS 50D
Date Taken2010:08:05 12:55:01
Aperturef/10.0
Exposure Time 0.002 s (1/500)
Focal Length (mm)139.00 (139/1)
ISO400
View in the gallery
A look at all of PW train K666 in both Preston and Ledyard, CT


Head to this album

Thanks for looking!
Tom

2 comments to Day and Night with the Devil

  • Joe McDonough

    Tom:

    The current movement of the unit ethanol trains into New England and on to Providence is somewhat confusing to me.
    As I read you description, it appears they proceed from “somewhere north” down the NE Central to New London where they are turned over to the P & W and then proceed north to(I assume Worcester)where they (once again) proceed south to Providence. Maybe I missed something, but why can’t the move be facilitated and occur at night up the Shore Line instead of what appears to an unnecessary move back up and through Worcester!! Is this an Amtrak stumbling block to what appears to be a more efficient move! Any light or clarification would be appreciated.

    ThanksL
    Joe McDonough

    • Joe-

      The routing, if I’m not mistaken, is the ethanol originates in North Dakota, where CP picks it up. They then handle it through Canada, and back into the US in New York, where it’s handed off to Vermont Rail in Whitehall. Then it’s to the NECR in Bellows Falls, where it comes south to New London to the PW. Why it doesn’t travel over Amtrak at night, I think is a two fold answer. First, Amtrak charges a surcharge to travel over their rails(last I knew it was around a dollar per car, per mile traveled), so that would add more to the bottom line. And second, Amtrak does the majority of their trackwork over nights along the Shore Line (this is why NR2 runs in daylight, and not overnight). So instead the ethanol crosses the Thames, and heads up the Norwich Branch. Once the Willimantic Branch is rebuilt, the ethanol will go back to using that route, and eliminate the run to New London all together.

      Sometimes the most efficient looking move isn’t the cheapest, otherwise all the ethanol will be moved over CSX and not paraded through nearly every New England state!

      Hope this helps…

      -Tom

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