Old 11-07-2019, 04:19 PM   #1
bigbassloyd
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Default California Desert Trip

Took a week and went out West with a group of amigos for some foam action on Tehachapi, Transcon, and Cajon.

Landed in LA and drove up to Bakersfield for 2 days at Tehachapi.



Went and checked in with Mark at the Trona, but they were working on the track and had no road train till nightfall. Shot the SD40s working the yard in Trona and left for the Transcon for 2 days.




Image © Loyd Lowry
PhotoID: 715894
Photograph © Loyd Lowry


More below.

Loyd L.
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Old 11-07-2019, 04:20 PM   #2
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Spent 3 days on Cajon, which was my favorite location of the trip. As an Eastsider, it blew my mind just how accessible the entire pass is. Drive anywhere you like, including along the ROW.

Image © Loyd Lowry
PhotoID: 715649
Photograph © Loyd Lowry





Great weather aside from one day of hurricane force winds on Tehachapi. The train traffic was good too. You West Coast railfans really do have it much easier.

You can see more photos on my website under 'New Additions'

Loyd L.
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Old 11-08-2019, 02:27 AM   #3
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You West Coast railfans really do have it much easier.

Loyd L.
There is no question in my mind that folks out west do indeed have a much easier time finding scenic photo locations with good lighting (and better weather) than those of us who live back east. Where I live, all railroads are tree tunnels and the scenery is pretty dull by comparison.

And people wonder why I am always jumping on planes....
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Old 11-08-2019, 03:42 AM   #4
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There is no question in my mind that folks out west do indeed have a much easier time finding scenic photo locations with good lighting (and better weather) than those of us who live back east. Where I live, all railroads are tree tunnels and the scenery is pretty dull by comparison.

And people wonder why I am always jumping on planes....
While I have traveled all over the US many times, this was my first dedicated railfan trip out West. I knew the shots were there, but it was way too easy to gather a memory card full of keepers. We didn't see a single cloud except for 6 hours on one day of the trip! Elevation is easy, no trees to speak of, no access issues, no lack of traffic, etc. Already planning my next trip.

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Old 11-08-2019, 04:08 AM   #5
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While I have traveled all over the US many times, this was my first dedicated railfan trip out West. I knew the shots were there, but it was way too easy to gather a memory card full of keepers. We didn't see a single cloud except for 6 hours on one day of the trip! Elevation is easy, no trees to speak of, no access issues, no lack of traffic, etc. Already planning my next trip.

Loyd L.
Nice stuff, Loyd. I had a similar experience on my first California railfan trip 36 (yikes!) years ago. I came away with a slightly different opinion of Cajon vs. Tehachapi. After a day or two of shooting the "easy" shots on Cajon, we started setting up at locations that required some effort to get to. With its three separate grades, we repeatedly watched trains on the other two lines, or trains going in the wrong direction on the line where we were set up. As a single track with passing sidings operation, Tehachapi was much less frustrating, and more the type of railroading that we were used to.

We spent nine days there, and didn't see a cloud. There was nothing that felt better than the damp air that greeted us when we landed after a rainstorm at Dulles.
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Old 11-08-2019, 01:00 PM   #6
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Nice stuff, Loyd. I had a similar experience on my first California railfan trip 36 (yikes!) years ago. I came away with a slightly different opinion of Cajon vs. Tehachapi. After a day or two of shooting the "easy" shots on Cajon, we started setting up at locations that required some effort to get to. With its three separate grades, we repeatedly watched trains on the other two lines, or trains going in the wrong direction on the line where we were set up. As a single track with passing sidings operation, Tehachapi was much less frustrating, and more the type of railroading that we were used to.

We spent nine days there, and didn't see a clout. There was nothing that felt better than the damp air that greeted us when we landed after a rainstorm at Dulles.
Tehachapi just didn't have the wow factor as much to me. The scenery is great, but there wasn't as many composition options along that line as there was in Cajon to me. We ran into some waits during the night with the flashes because of locations needing a train on a certain track, but it's Cajon and something will run I can't remember how many times there were 2 to 4 trains in view at once there. A couple of times during the day required a brisk run to another spot when a train wasn't on the correct track, but that was part of the excitement I guess.

As with any of my trips out to the desert, my sinuses and skin took a beating. Thank goodness for carmex and lotion!
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