Old 02-24-2006, 02:16 PM   #1
MichaelJ
The Photo Journalist
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Sydney, NSW
Posts: 630
Default USA Tour in 2007

After returning from Japan in early February, I have concluded that there is much more to Railways than the narrow guage tracks of Queensland. Some would beg to differ ... but that's another story!

I am looking at traveling to the USA/Canada in 2007. I have been advised that Autumn and Spring are the best times to visit for blue skies. I am particularly keen to photograph trains in California. Here in Australia, you are either a GE or EMD person, and I would classify myself as a General Electric person. I would like to photograph all types of trains from Amtrak Acelas to UP Intermodals. The GE AC, ES, and P4 Series Locomotives are of particular interest to me.

Does anyone have any advice for rail photography in the USA? What are the ins and outs of the hobby ...
- Can you take photos from railway property?
- Are road crossings easily accessible?
- Do drivers expect a friendly wave?
- Is turning off the locomotive headlight a sign of respect to the photographer?

Finally, how much will I need for a two week expedition?

I found out just how different rail fanning is in every country after my trip to Japan! No driver will wave unless you are another JR Employee!

Thanks in advance ...
__________________
My portfolio at RailPictures.Net!
My portfolio at Flickr!

The views expressed in this reply are personal and do not represent the views or policy of my employer.
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2006, 05:37 PM   #2
David Telesha
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

-Can you take photos from railway property?

No. Except passenger stations

- Are road crossings easily accessible?

Yes.

- Do drivers expect a friendly wave?

Maybe. Wave if they stare at you. Don't be annoying

- Is turning off the locomotive headlight a sign of respect to the photographer?

No. Turning it on is actually. Though if its on bright, dimming it would be. Dont' expect anything though - most railroaders are doing their jobs, not worrying about giving someone a nice picture. Many are really nice folks though.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2006, 05:43 PM   #3
cmherndon
Banned
 
cmherndon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Lawrenceburg, KY
Posts: 883
Send a message via AIM to cmherndon Send a message via Yahoo to cmherndon
Default

Quote:
- Can you take photos from railway property?
Technically, you can only do this with permission.

Quote:
- Are road crossings easily accessible?
Most of them probably are, but I'd say your best bet is to find a relatively scenic location. The US has quite a bit of scenery, so don't waste a photo by taking a crossing wedgie.

Quote:
- Do drivers expect a friendly wave?
It's probably not expected, and don't be surprised if one or two give you the one fingered salute. Most engineers I've seen will wave.

Quote:
- Is turning off the locomotive headlight a sign of respect to the photographer?
No. Usually the only time the headlight will be off is if there is a meet in progress.
cmherndon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2006, 03:04 AM   #4
MichaelJ
The Photo Journalist
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Sydney, NSW
Posts: 630
Default

Thanks for the advice guys!

Do they have two driver operation in US? Here we only have a driver onboard.
__________________
My portfolio at RailPictures.Net!
My portfolio at Flickr!

The views expressed in this reply are personal and do not represent the views or policy of my employer.
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2006, 03:10 AM   #5
bnsf sammy
Senior Member
 
bnsf sammy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 638
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelJ
Do they have two driver operation in US? Here we only have a driver onboard.
Yes, sometimes 3. An engineer, a conductor, and a brakeman.
__________________
BNSF SAMMY
Click Here to view my photos at RailPictures.Net!
bnsf sammy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2006, 03:58 PM   #6
CNW4404
Member
 
CNW4404's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Kenosha, WI
Posts: 52
Send a message via AIM to CNW4404
Default

Michael, are you set on California? I would recommend the Chicago area as well; There's Metra commuter service to almost all of the Chicago suburbs (and to different lines) as well as every major railroad in the U.S.
__________________
Chris Keating
Kenosha, WI
CNW4404 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2006, 08:19 PM   #7
J
Senior Member
 
J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 532
Default

Good source of data for California locations is the "California Region Timetable" by Altamont Press. Here is a link to their website.
http://altamontpress.com/catalog/timetable-ca17.html

Studying this document can help you plan your trip. Well-known photogenic locations in California are, of course, Donner Pass (between Sacramento Califormia and Reno / Sparks) and the Techachapi Pass between Bakersfield and Mojave.

The website does not mention overseas orders so you might want to e-mail them at:
http://altamontpress.com/directories/contact.html
J is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2006, 11:09 PM   #8
MichaelJ
The Photo Journalist
 
MichaelJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Sydney, NSW
Posts: 630
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CNW4404
Michael, are you set on California? I would recommend the Chicago area as well; There's Metra commuter service to almost all of the Chicago suburbs (and to different lines) as well as every major railroad in the U.S.
I have been to California once before when I was a kid. I picked that location because I heard it had some great photo spots. In saying that though, I would like to go traveling around and see many other places. If I'm lucky I'll get a ride on the Acela. I am a true electric train fan.

Is it mostly sunny in summer, winter or in between?
__________________
My portfolio at RailPictures.Net!
My portfolio at Flickr!

The views expressed in this reply are personal and do not represent the views or policy of my employer.
MichaelJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 04:36 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.