asheville

asheville

Streamliners At Spencer, Part One And A Half: After The Show

2h ago
SOURCE  

Description

Our first day of Streamliners At Spencer officially wrapped up around 5:45 as Pennsy E8 5809 headed to Charlotte with a special all-Pennsy private car consist. The clouds were finally letting the sun show through a bit, so as with my springtime trip to Salisbury in 2013 to chase the 630 (see '109 Years Young, Part II'), we lingered at the wye to see what else would show up before the sun went down. The train frequency wouldn't break any records, but the variety was a refreshing departure from the RF&P routine back home. First up was Amtrak train 76, the northbound 'Piedmont', departing Salisbury at 5:57. F59PHI 1797 and its trailing baggage-lounge and three coaches were all painted in colors that recall those of the North Carolina state flag. We didn't see another train for over an hour, but the action picked up again at 7:14 when a northbound freight hurried past behind a 5-unit lashup: SD70ACe 1076, C40-8 8736, C40-9W 9779, SD40-2 3262, and C40-8W 8410. At 7:47, it was Amtrak's turn again as the southbound Carolinian slowed for its stop, led by P42 124. At 7:56, The setting sun provided the backdrop for a freight coming off the S Line from Asheville behind a sight for sore eyes - a matched set of SD40-2s. The nose-mounted headlight was a dead giveaway to the Burlington Northern heritage of the leader, former HLCX lease unit 3553. The trailing units' heritage was a little closer to home - the 3238 started life as a Southern high-hood unit, while the 6127 was in the employ of the Norfolk & Western. Both units now sport NS' homebuilt 'Admiral' cab design, having passed through the ongoing SD40-2 rebuild program. Finally, at 8:32 we were treated to another northbound freight, led by SD70M-2s 2757 and 2768. The relatively short consist was neatly divided between autoracks on the head end and stacked and single-level containers on the rear. Our first day was done - for real, this time.