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Photos by C. Zeni
Craig's Train Photos
Photographs by C. Zeni

This is a simple gallery of my railroad photographs. Having been posting to for about a year, and having been photographing trains on and off for 15 years, I decided that I wanted a place where I could exhibit my best or favorite photos more or less permanently. This page is not fancy...don't want it to be. There's a mix of subject matter here, as at this time I want this to be more like a wandering through a small gallery and not a roster photo source with photos segregated by railroad or locale. Some of the main images are fairly large, but I did this to preserve the image - please be patient.

And my solemn promise to you is that while this page will always be changing, you will never see a cheesy "under construction" gif on this website.


Everybody knows that the south doesn't get snow, right? January of 2000 we had five ice/snow events in the space of two weeks, including Dumpzilla 2000 which walloped central North Carolina with over 20 inches of the mess. After three days of being housebound I was able to get out and get some photos.
Amtrak 63... On 29 January I caught Amtrak 63 on Train 80 just east of the Cary NC station. I got a major pelting with snow crystals as he went by.
NS 8910... NS C40-9W 8910 leads Train 349 past Cary's historic Paige-Walker Hotel on 31 January. Behind the train is the junction with the CSX line (ex Seaboard Air Line) route from Hamlet NC. The junction is called Fetner, and the CSX tracks are just out of sight to the right.
NS 1605... On train 352 NS SD40 1605 leads a curious power consist across Raleigh's Smoky Hollow viaduct on 29 January. Smoky Hollow is a low lying area between Peace Street and Boylan Heights in Raleigh, and was a working class neighborhood into the 1905s. It takes its name from the way smoke from the wood and coal stoves used to heat the shotgun houses would lay down in the hollow. The houses were urban-renewaled into oblivion forty years ago.
NS 9268... Starting its run to Goldsboro, NS Train 26 pulls around the connecting track between the old Seaboard Air Line main line and the state-owned (but NS leased) "NC Main Line" at Raleigh on February 1st. Since the Conrail take-over lease power is often seen in Raleigh.

Normal weather

NS 6594... Pulling Train 349 around the curve at Boylan and heading for Linwood Yard near Salisbury NC, NS 6594's train is still stretched out back across Smoky Hollow viaduct, June 1999.
NS 8563... Back when they were new and unique in March of 1987, a friend and I caught C39-8 8563 arriving in Roanoke VA on the Pumpkin Vine from Winston Salem NC.
NS 8952... Blasting out of the fog, NS 8952 leans into a curve on the old Southern Rwy main line at Ruffin, North Carolina in October 1999.
NS 8812... "Top Hat" C40-9 8812 has just come downgrade through the NC State University campus, made the turn at Boylan and is crawling toward the Smoky Hollow viaduct and into Glenwood March 1999.
Amtrak 298... In June 1987 Amtrak 298 leads the southbound Palmetto through Milan Yard in Fayetteville, NC.
Amtrak 31... In October 1999 Amtrak 31 leads Train 80, The Carolinian, away from its station stop in Cary, NC. Having a little fun with a wide angle, you see.
Amtrak 338... Amtrak 338 leads The Palmetto into the station at Selma, NC in 1987. This shot was made with a cheapo zoom lens during my poor college student days that was only sharp in the middle of the image and out of focus on the edges. Made for some neat effects I think.
Amtrak 373... In December 1986 Amtrak 373 leads Train 82 The Silver Star into Selma NC. The train had only started using this routing three months earlier, after CSX abandoned the old Seaboard Air Line main line north of Raleigh.
SBD 8165... Trying to outrun a late spring thunderstorm, Seaboard System 8165 races a northbound manifest through the town of Micro, NC in May 1987. As the clever mind might surmise, Micro is not a large town. This trackage was the mainline of the Atlantic Coast Line and known as the Speedway, home of purple E units and long strings of stainless steel passenger cars.
Family Lines 7060... This train is southbound through Micro and has run into the teeth of that storm. I'm under the cover of a store canopy. This photo is a good illustration of "film's cheap - take photos" as common railfan wisdom would preclude taking photos in a pouring rain. I think the effect is pretty dramatic here.
CSX 6152... Passing under a typical Atlantic Coast Line signal bridge is Train 175, a southbound intermodal train at Contentnea NC in May 1999. The track in the foreground is the old Coast Line mainline that went due south to Wilmington NC then back southwest to Florence SC. This route was bypassed in 1893 by completion of the Fayetteville Cut-Off, which peeled off here at Contentnea, heading south via Fayetteville NC and Dillon SC, rejoining the old mainline at Florence.
SBD 5718... It's 1988 and just starting its journey south to Hamlet NC on the old Seaboard Air Line is Seaboard System 5718. With its CSX sublettering, 5718 lets us know who its new owner is. This era was great fun for photography on CSX, as the power lash ups were always colorful mixes of predecessor roads.
Family Lines 8052... Owned by CSX but still painted Family Lines French Gray, SD40-2 8052 has just crossed the Southern's diamonds at Selma NC in May 1987. There is a 50 mph speed limit across the diamonds (under the third unit by the way) and the engineer has just pulled open the throttle, making 8052 give a burp of soot as he heads back up to the 60 mph track speed. Even at "only" 50 mph, the wheels hitting the diamonds sound like rifle shots.
CSX 285... Passing under another style of signal bridge typical to the Atlantic Coast Line, CSX 285 is an AC44CW leading a northbound empty coal train on a muggy August 1999 morning. Selma is on the South End Subdivision, 161 miles from Richmond VA. The Coast Line runs through miles of flat coastal plain territory here and is paralleled fairly well by US 301 from Emporia VA to Benson NC. With the speeds that even local trains move, one does not chase trains on the Coast Line; one sits and waits with a scanner.
CSX 7712... Another CSX train at Selma, this time it's CSX 7712 with a northbound manifest in March 1999. Selma is the closest point on the main line to my home, thus all the photos from there. And it doesn't hurt that the light is great in the morning for northbound trains...

More photos here on page two.

Still more photos on page three.

Gads...even more photos on page four.

Mercy, when will it stop? More photos on page five.

It's out of control! More photos on page six.

I'm out of hyperbole so this is just page seven.

Yum!  Fresh meat!...Photos of the freshly repainted Aberdeen & Rockfish locomotive fleet here.

Your comments are welcome; send them to clzeni at mindspring dot com...gotta put in the spam block, you know.

16 July 2002. All rights reserved - you copy deese pictures without our permission, we gets you.