Western Maryland Scenic
Railway - FallColors
this page revised
On Oct.25,1999 I attended one
of Carl Franz's famous photo trips at Cumberland Maryland.
These trips take place annually at various locations ( Cass, WM Scenic,
& some short lines ). The goal is to recreate steam trains
of the past for the railfan photographer, in a scenic environment ( eg.
Winter snow and Fall colors ).
This day it was a 7 car freight train
behind Western Maryland Scenic Railroad's #734. It was
a beautiful sunny day set against mountain backgrounds displaying the peak
of Fall color ! We made 40+ photo-runbys
done exclusively for those on this chartered train. Carl picks the
photo locations based on the site's opportunities and the lighting.
Photographers ride the train to the sites. Once everyone disembarks,
the train makes several photo runbys. Then everyone climbs on for
the next site.
At a meeting held at our hotel the night
before, we were briefed on what to expect and saw prior years slides.
The next morning our trip began at dawn and lasted until dusk. We
photographed the freight train at locations like the famous horseshoe shaped
curve known as Helmstetters Curve.
WM Scenic RR. Background:
Their eastern terminal is Cumberland MD. The western most point is
16 miles away at Frostburg. The track is mostly the former
Western Maryland Railroad until the point known as Switch#9. At this
point the WM Scenic runs on the old Cumberland & Pennsylvania Railroad.
Grades at times reach 2.8% and there is a 914 foot tunnel passing
through Piney Mountain. The steam engine is a 2-8-0 ex-LS&I
#34; sister engine to Nelsonville's HVSRy #33.
The day before the "Photo Extra" ran,
I photographed the train while it was on scheduled tourist trips.
Here #734 is seen at the
Frostburg, about to be turned on the turntable.
Photographers can ascend
the staircase for a better vantage point.
#734 smoke partly obscures
it during the turning for the return trip
The following day's Photo Extra begins
#734 emerges from the yard and passes
the conductor during switching.
Our train sets at Cumberland
Station as it "Takes Water" ( photo#3
& photo#4 ).
The sun's morning
golden light catches #734 on Helmstetter's Curve.
the Brush Tunnel and entering
Railfan photographers walk
into Brush Tunnel preparing for the interior photo.
Sorry ...not all images scanned
yet , check back in Nov. 2000
Other Related Links
Steve Barry's Photo's
of last year's Winter trips !
Railway Historical Society
WM Scenic Railroad