Carl Weber's ConRail Action 1996-1999

ConRail's SD80MAC's arrived on the old Boston & Albany in 1996 and stayed till the end of ConRail, and beyond, for a short time. If you had a hankerin' for the big EMD beasts, this was the place to see 'em. Although other locomotive models made their presence known, the "Big MAC's" became the "usual suspects" for this time period, much as the C30-7A's had been from 1984 to 1991.

It's 12:31 on July 18, 1997 as SEBO struggles along at maybe 5 mph to make the top of the grade at MP 142 in the center of Hinsdale, MA.
At 12:32 SEBO is caught up to and passed by lightweight Friday-only TV80W, led by C30-7A 6571 zipping by on track 2.
C30-7A 6571 has TV80W moving right along at 12:32 in Hinsdale, MA. on July 18, 1997.
With TV80W safely past, SEBO continues his slow uphill slog at 12:33.
Now that SEBO's Big Mac's are "on the level", they can get a roll on through Hinsdale, MA.
CSX 6220 leads a varied lash-up on CSSE through Iona Island at 14:03 on Oct. 24, 1998.
SD60M 5573 trails in CSSE on Iona Island on Oct. 24, 1998.
C40-8 6034 leading an ML480X through Iona at 15:37 on Oct. 24, 1998.
CSX 7880 leads SECS through Iona at 16:00 on Oct. 24, 1998. CSX power was fairly common on the SECS/CSSE turns and was a harbinger of the future for the River Line.
SD70MAC's 4137 and 4134 bring ALSE through Iona at 16:24 on Oct. 24, 1998.
CR local WAKI-80 (Kingston) rolls across Iona trestle at Bear Mountain, NY. on July 30, 1997 with the 1915 and 1911.
WAKI-80 at the south end of Iona trestle in Bear Mountain state park, NY. on July 30, 1997.
Led by the ubiquitous 1933, the track geometry train heads westward near MP 138 in Washington, MA. Oct. 7, 1997. This train was the third part of a "hat trick" accomplished this day, along with an OCS301 and CIR501.
Track Geometry car #21 brings up the rear at Washington, MA. on Oct. 7, 1997.
B23-7 2001 and mate 1931 head west with a train of "YSOFC" (yellow s**t on flat cars) at CP 83 in Palmer, MA. on Aug. 15, 1998. Yeah, the stuff is indispensable at times, at other times it's just in the way.
Track surfacing machine TS 1009 on the MOW extra at Palmer, MA. on Aug. 15, 1998.
Ballast regulator BR 3012 on the MOW extra at Palmer, MA. on Aug. 15, 1998.
Ballast regulator BR 1164 at the rear of the MOW extra in Palmer, MA. on Aug.15, 1998. NO, I did NOT take a photo of EVERY car in the train, so don't ask.
Looks can be deceiving! Connecticut Southern road turn CSO-1 (Cedar Hill, New Haven-West Springfield, MA.) heads northward past the "Amshack" in Windsor Locks, CT. on Sept. 26, 1997. When CSO took over the remaining CR branches in the Hartford area of Connecticut they leased CR B23-7's 2008-2013 for their start-up and the train seen here is operating over the Amtrak Springfield line.
Heavily "tagged" CR N21 21226 van on the rear of CSO-1 at Windsor Locks, CT. on Sept. 26, 1997.
B23-7's 2017 and 1932 have just departed West Springfield yard at 07:01 on Sept. 5, 1997 as WAWS-5. They are passing the former B&A Mittineague depot on their way to "Traprock", the Lane quarry at MP 105 in Westfield.
B23-7 2019 leads a rusty, dusty half dozen of it's siblings with ML482 nearing the State Line in Canaan, NY. on Oct. 17, 1996.
"Wash rack..?, what's a wash rack?." ML482's gaggle of B-Boats need a bath and some TLC! Nahh, kick 'em the butt and get 'em movin'.
Thrashed, trashed and battle-scarred, the little B-Boats soldier on as they had for the previous 20 years.
SD70 2569 leads TV6 across the flats in Brookfield, MA. on Sept. 5, 1998. Sharp-eyed observers will note the second unit is not CR, it's an EsPee SD45.
A rare visitor to the Boston line, SD70 2573 leads a BOSE-X through Chester, MA. on Feb. 20, 1999.
Because of it's rarity up here, BOSE-X was worth a chase to get another crack at SD70 2573 as he works up by Ballou's on Feb. 20, 1999.
A pair of SD70's, led by the 2574, take TV9 through Huntington, MA. on Feb. 20, 1999.
B23-7 2816, the highest numbered unit in the 2800 series group, leads XNS113, the empty coal train out of the Tompkins Cove power plant, a few miles south of Iona, through the Island at 14:50 on Oct. 24, 1998.
A rare, for this point in time, visit by a GP40-2 to the Boston Line features the 3385 leading TV8W at Ballou's in Washington, MA. on Oct. 9, 1997.
CR 4020 leads OCS301 westward along Muddy Pond in Washington, MA. on Oct. 7, 1997.
Class unit 4100 leading TV-9 near C&B Jct. in Chester, MA. on Nov. 15, 1997.
Class unit SD80MAC 4100 leads FRSE across the flats in Hinsdale, MA. on Oct. 4, 1997.
CR 4101 leads SEBO through the curves along the north end of Muddy Pond at 08:25 on Aug. 17, 1996. The train is leaving Hinsdale and entering Washington at this point.
The 4101 leads BOSE into Washington, MA. from Hinsdale on Aug. 17, 1996.
SD80MAC 4102 with SPSE at Bancroft, MA. on June 4, 1999.
A quartet of "MAC's", led by the 4102, take BOSE through Ballou's in Washington, MA. on New Year's Eve, 1997.
ML-482 at MP 138 in Washington, MA. on March 6, 1999.
One of the few clouds in the entire sky just HAS to be in front of the sun as SD80MAC 4102 heads a quartet of the Big MAC's on SEBO at Ballou's in Washington, MA. on Oct. 7, 1997.
CR 4103 and mate reach the top of the grade at MP 142 in Hinsdale, MA. with SEBO on Feb. 21, 1998.
A pair of SD80MAC's roll through Ballou's with SEBO in Washington, MA. on March 25, 1998.
SD80MAC 4104 leads SEBO toward the state line in Canaan, NY. on Oct. 17, 1998.
A pair of SD80MAC's, led by the 4104, are eastbound around mile 162.5 in Canaan, NY. on Oct. 17, 1998 with SEBO.
SEBO at MP 138 in Washington, MA. on Oct. 9, 1997.
SD80MAC 4104 has SEFR trailing at the north end of Muddy Pond in Washington, MA. on Sept. 5, 1997.
ML433 carves through the early morning murkiness at CP 140 in Hinsdale, MA. at 08:23 on the morning of Oct. 5, 1997.
"Big MAC" 4105 leads FRSE through Huntington, MA. on Oct. 17, 1998.
CR 4106 hammers through Ballou's with BOSE at 07:57 on Sept. 26, 1998.
A pair of MAC's and some other "stuff" haul upgrade by the coal tower in Chester, MA. on Oct. 10, 1998.
FRSE heading away through Chester, MA. on Oct. 10, 1998.

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