On November 23 we headed south to Syracuse NY for Black Friday festivities. I was able to do a commercial cut-out and head to CSX's Mohawk Division 3 mile-long yard facilities, including the largest intermodal yard in all of New York state. My location: C.P. 286 at the Bridge Street overpass in East Syracuse. These photos are taken west of the overpass showing CSX's TransFlo transfer facility and 1937-built coaling tower(above) and east (below). Interestingly, the Village of East Syracuse includes a photo (wait for the slideshow) of a CSX train taken from the Bridge Street overpass!
While I only had about three hours to spend here, weather deterioriated to heavy overcast and showers, dampening my enthusiasm slightly. Regardless, I wanted to record some of the views available. When I said three-mile-long yard, I wasn't kidding. Look at this CSX intermodal train stretched out to the horizon, powered by CSX 934-5247 at 1140:
The above 'drive-by' photo shows the excellent access road that parallels CSX property. Previously, the Syracuse Amtrak station was in this area. No need to trespass here, and if a train is slow-moving, there is a chance to catch up to it without driving like an idiot. Did I mention trackside dining? Rico's Ristorante has enticing trackside-view windows.
Amtrak snuck up on me at 1150. This is the Lakeshore Limited from Chicago, with baggage, dining and sleeping cars eastbound from Chicago, due in Syracuse at 1138.
As Amtrak markers disappear into the distance, a mostly empty CSX intermodal freight appeares from behind it with 5259-5412-107.
Continuing west under the Bridge Street overpass, the structure in the distance appears to be a freight house. Speno rail grinding operations were also based here, before being absorbed by Michigan-based Pandrol-Jackson and later Harsco Track Technologies.
Geeps 2692-2792 trundled east from the TransFlo facility after spotting some track machine flat cars. At 1205, a couple of units entered the yard with a few intermodal cars: 5436-7779. Ever heard the term Toaster used for a GE unit? Here's why. Check out the burn marks on C40-8W 7779:
North side of the yard (Conn Rail Road, says the sign) is home to stored intermodal equipment and CSX maintenance facilities. (Submit the correct number of STOP signs readily visible in this post and win a prize!) **We have a winner. Thanks to all for your guesses and being sharp-eyed readers!
Conrail lives on along Conn Rail Road; the railroad version of Elvis. This double-door boxcar has vestiges of U-1 wheel stencil, consolidated lube plates and an ACI label. Perhaps an AEI car reader tag too.
While rejoining my party at Wal-Mart (where the Salvation Army kettle-minder rings his bells in a suitably attention-getting and hopefully donation-getting manner), I missed an eastbound auto rack train. No problem, just zoom in from the parking lot to catch these BNSF Auto-Max cars.
And now a selection of US intermodal cars (click to enlarge) you won't see on CN's Kingston Sub. While regular Trackside Treasure readers know that I usually feature Canadian railroading, Syracuse is close to Kingston, and is the junction of the CSX St Lawrence Subdivision which connects with the CSX Montreal Subdivision at Massena. The junction is very close to Destiny USA, formerly known as Carousel Mall, and can be seen at the top of this Destiny USA aerial photo.
Got ONR? Check out Jerry Marshall's awesome N scale collection. Adam Walker photographed Jerry's train show display. It's truly impressive.
CP hunts for savings, moving its Calgary headquarters to cheaper real estate, chopping train starts, cutting their workforce, and no doubt adopting the measures that got CN's operating ratio way down. Cutting costs since 1885...
NBC's Christmas in Rockefeller Center featured always cool Tony Bennett, Mariah Carey, Trace Adkins and the tinselly festive and precise Radio City Rockettes. 'Tis the season for Christmas specials. I share David Letterman's favourite show suggestions: Martha Stewart Makes a Bunch of Cheap Crap from Tinsel. Due to global warming, CBS has remade Frosty the Snowman into Frosty the Puddle.