WK&S 2003 Photo Freight Special

I don't often get to take action pictures of WK&S trains because I'm usually running the train. So on November 29, 2003 I decided to charter my own train. This was a non-public train open only to friends and family of the Railroad. For once I got to play railfan, riding the caboose and making lots of photo stops along the way.

There were a few unique aspects of this train. First of all, it was a freight train. Freight trains are rare at the WK&S since the Railroad doesn't actually have any freight business. The train comprised General Electric locomotive #7258, LNE gondola #10381, LNE flat car #719 and LNE caboose #512. The flat car and little caboose are almost never operated over the line. As far as I know, this is the first time this exact consist has been run at the WK&S.

Also, the visibility along the line is the best it's been in decades. Several WK&S volunteers spent 2003 clearing trees and brush along the line. Coupled with a leaf-less late November, we had many photo opportunities that were not previously available.

As a final note, the photographs below are presented in geographical order so this page can serve as a brief tour of the line.

Northbound Trip

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The freight train departs Kempton with the Kempton station in the background.

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The train at Fuhrman's Grove. During the regular season passengers may choose to detrain at Fuhrman's Grove with a picnic lunch and make use of picnic tables between the tracks and Ontelaunee Creek. The picnickers use the semaphore signal to flag down the train when they wish to re-board.

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Again at Fuhrman's Grove, the same scene the from the opposite angle. From this angle the caboose blocks the view of the small picnic area, however, Ontelaunee Creek is visible behind the left marker lamp on the rear of the caboose.

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Crossing Ontelaunee Creek.

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Crossing a second bridge just a few yards north of the Ontelaunee Creek bridge. This bridge carries the Railroad over an old farmer's road.

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And just beyond the two bridges the train passes a farm and apple orchard.

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Here the train passes through the town of Wanamakers with Wanamaker station visible in the background. Notice all the stumps in the foreground. A tremendous amount of brush was cleared during 2003 making photographs like this possible.

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Again at Wanamakers. The side track will be used to run the locomotive around the train before the return trip south.

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End of the line. This location is a few hundred yards north of Wanamakers. The track ends just to the left of the train. The road in the foreground is Route 143. From here the train will back to Wanamakers where the siding will be used to reconfigure the train.

Southbound Trip

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Back at Wanamaker station, the locomotive and caboose have traded places. The train is about to depart for the southbound trip back to Kempton.

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The train has just cleared the Clover Road crossing near Steinsville. Steinsville is located between Wanamakers and the apple orchard.

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Southbound over Ontelaunee Creek.

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Again over Ontelaunee Creek. Both bridges are visible in this view. The apple orchard is behind the caboose beyond the trees.

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Approaching the Old Philly Pike crossing at Trexler. Trexler is located between Fuhrman's Grove and Kempton.

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Passing through Trexler. The building in the background houses the Albay Township Historical Society.

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Finally, back at Kempton. The locomotive has run around the train in preperation for some end of the day switching.