View Full Version : A CNO&TP Deathmarch

07-24-2006, 12:55 AM
Deathmarch (n) - An expedition which sometimes exceeds 24 hours, with no sleep and little food, all in the pursuit of early morning and late night photos that the foamers are too lame to get, and usually leads to the phrase, "This is stupid" more than once during a trip.

So it was on July 8, 2006, Emmett and I headed out early for a road trip along the CNO&TP. The previous night, he called me to finalize the plans and told me, "Be here at 6 am. If you're late, you're left." Therefore, I left my house at 0530 to give me time to stop at the Parkway Shell for a greasy egg sandwich and an Ale 8-1 (breakfast of champions). Upon arrival at EB's, I sat in the car for a few minutes to finish the sandwich and listen to something on The Bob & Tom show. As it turned out, I called Emmett and woke him up. We were on the road by 0630, though.

It had been unusually cool the night before, and the humidity made the morning very foggy. This made for a beautiful sunrise, which we stopped and photographed.

Danville, KY Sunrise (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/nature/danvillesunrise070806.htm)

After that, we uncharacteristically bypassed Danville and headed south.

There was no traffic on US 27, which is a good thing because Lincoln and Pulaski counties have the highest concentration of people who can't drive. If you're having a good trip down 27, you'll more than likely get caught by several lights in Somerset. We both guesstimated how many lights we'd get stopped by. I guessed six, Emmett guessed five. We were stopped by four. This was truly amazing.

As we head south, we hear a southbound grain train climbing the hill between Tateville and Greenwood. We also hear 230 coming across single track and shoot them at Parkers Lake. 180 is also coming across, and we drive up to the overpass and shoot them.

NS 180/NS 7538 - Parkers Lake, KY (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns180ns7538parkerslakeky070806.htm)

Thinking that the grain train might actually have some decent power, we head south to find a suitable location for a photo. Somehow, the train gets ahead of us, but that didn't really matter since we later found out it only had a roach coach on the head end. We do manage to catch 264 at Bear Creek, TN, though.

NS 264 - Bear Creek, TN (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns264bearcreektn070806.htm)

We hear that 123 is having problems with their second unit (low governor oil) and will be stopping at Ratliff, TN to meet a shop truck. After a brief delay, they get the unit fixed and are back underway again. 283 was behind them and we observe its passing at Strunk, KY. The shot wasn't much to write home about (i.e. it was hartesque).

It's back to Bear Creek to shoot 167, and at this point, I'm already starting to feel the effects of about 30 minutes of sleep from the previous night. Still trying to find a location with good light, we head to Pemberton and watch 160 come down the hill. About 40 minutes later, we catch 224, 223, 132, and 133 (in that order) all within a few minutes of each other.

Those were the last trains for a while, so we decided to check out the Tennessee Railway and see how things were looking over there. We didn't do much exploring and ended up back in Oneida, where we stopped and ate lunch. We then headed up to Cross, to wait for some rail traffic. The Scott Co. Sheriff passed by a few times but never stopped and questioned us. I still can't figure out what you foamers are doing to get the attention of the law.

Keeping ourselves entertained, we start hearing the traffic pick up, as 144 passes Sunbright, about 20 miles south of us. We both want shots at the state line, so that's where we head. Seeing a "NO TRESPASSING" sign posted on the road, Emmett inquires in the local Cold Beer/Ice/Cigarettes/Fireworks stand to find out who owns the property. They don't know, so we drive back on that road and stop at one of the houses across the tracks and ask for permission. Permission is granted, so we hang out at the state line for about and hour and watch 144, 124, and 229.

NS 124 - Silerville, TN (state line) (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns124ns8860silervilletn070806.htm)
NS 229/NS 9130 - Silerville, TN (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns229ns9130silervilletn070806.htm)

We hear 111 coming and head up to Pine Knot, where the dispatcher has southbounds lined up down both tracks. 111 gets the diverging route at Whitley, and shows up a few minutes later. 215 gets straight rail at Whitley, and ends up "smoking" 111 somewhere down the line. We catch 215 at Revelo, and hang around to wait for 177, which we shoot snaking around the now out of service coal loadout.

NS 177/NS 9962 - Revelo, KY (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns177ns9962reveloky070806.htm)

We start heading north again, and end up at Burnside and try to hike up to the ledge before 143 crosses the bridge. No dice. We're a few seconds late, but still watch them pass. There's a northbound coming, but at this point, they're over an hour away, so we hang out up on ledge and wait. During this time, I took some photos of boats that were down below on the Cumberland River.

Boat on the Cumberland River (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/misc/general/burnsideboat070806-1.htm)
Another boat on the Cumberland River (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/misc/general/burnsideboat070806-4.htm)
A third boat on the Cumberland River (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/misc/general/burnsideboat070806-6.htm)

As usual, as soon as 284 showed up, there were no boats to be found. 284 has to meet a southbound at Grove, and we think that we're about to have a Tango Foxtrot happen. Luckily, we're able to shoot 284.

NS 284/NS 9129 - Burnside, KY (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns284ns9129burnsideky070806.htm)

A few minutes later, 236 passes with a patched SP unit leading for the last shot of the day.

NS 236/UP 6801 - Burnside, KY (http://www.cmherndon.com/galleries/rail/2006/07/ns236up6801burnsideky070806.htm)

After 236 passes, we decide to head to the house. Both of us were pretty worn out after this expedition. Total time out was somewhere around 14 or 15 hours.

And now for the soundtrack...

As I stated in the last report, I'll start writing down some of the songs that happen to play on the satellite radio during a trip. Sometimes, these will be very obscure. Without further ado, here's the soundtrack for July 8, 2006.

1.) "Lucky Star" - Madonna (You need to see the movie Snatch to understand the humorous signifigance)
2.) "Walk on the Wild Side" - Lou Reed
3.) "We're Not Gonna Take It" - Twisted Sister
4.) "Point of Know Return" - Kansas
5.) "Linger" - The Cranberries
6.) "American Pie" - Don McLean
7.) "Nashville Cats" - The Del McCoury Band
8.) "Green Light of the Southern" - Tony Rice (mandatory train tune)
9.) "If Heaven Ain't A Lot Like Dixie" - Hank Williams Jr.
10.) "Soul Man" - Sam & Dave

Until next time, I hope y'all enjoy and thanks for looking!

07-24-2006, 03:43 AM
nice report caleb.i like the last pic of the meet over the bridge.thanks for sharing and waiting to read and see more from you.

07-24-2006, 11:39 AM
Nice report and pics. Thanks for the effort.

07-26-2006, 12:12 PM
Nice shots. Keep up the great work!

08-05-2006, 02:55 AM
Now i'm all homesick.