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What’s Past Is Prologue

May 25, 2017

The Bard: “What’s Past Is Prologue.”

Ecclesiastes 1:9: “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.”

I know you’re asking yourself “what in the name of Hades is this guy talking about?” Let’s just say this is a literary heads-up.

Amtrak #2 departed Los Angeles last night with the same power that was on it Tuesday before last, 5/16/2017, P42’s 822 & 4. Barring any unforeseen motive power problems, you’ll get another opportunity tomorrow morning to catch one of Amtrak’s heritage units leading a train into Houston.

In the event you can’t make it out tomorrow to see it, here are a few shots of what it looked like on its previous trip leading #2 into Houston.

I really wanted to shoot it further east, but thick clouds in that direction made me opt for the view from the US 59 overpass. As it turned out, clouds arrived seconds before the train got to the prime spot, but at least I was able to get this telephoto view.

My next intended shot was to catch it arriving at the depot, but upon hearing that #2 had to flag a signal at CP LF372, I decided to try a shot from the West Park Ave. overpass. Arriving scant moments before the train was a blessing in disguise because I didn’t have any time to curse the vegetation and power lines that totally ruin that shot. Instead, I used the 15 seconds I had before the train arrived to find the one spot on the overpass that wasn’t totally hosed.

Being but 6 or so miles away from the depot, there’s no way I beat #2 there for my intended shot of it arriving. My next best bet will be to catch it as it leaves Houston so I headed to Chaney Junction to await its 12:10 PM departure.

My visions of how nicely the train would look when framed by the two searchlights was smashed by the brutal glare off of the nose of the lead unit. What can you really do?

Fortunately, the glare is only an issue with head-on views, and resolved nicely as the train got by me.

Finally, a broadside of the object of my obsession. The P42 will never win any beauty contests, but they don’t look too bad when in a nice looking scheme.

Partly cloudy skies tomorrow in the Houston area, so I’ll be rolling the dice one more time…

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Pete permalink
    May 25, 2017 6:30 pm

    You’re photography is always the very best I’ve seen!! Thanks for all your hard work and sharing!’
    Pete M.

  2. Howard Bingham permalink
    May 26, 2017 5:02 am

    Isn’t AMTK 822 a P-40 model ? Quite a few P40’s have been seen on YouTube heading Western Amtrak LD trains, in addition to at least 4 on the Auto Train..

    • May 26, 2017 9:31 am

      It was originally built as a P40, but it and 14 others were pulled out of storage and re-built to P42 standards with funds from the 2009 ARRA stimulus. Damned Obama. ;-)))
      There are no P40’s as such runiing.

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