Conrail 1 – The West Slope
Format: DVD Length: 58 minutes
Time Period: Contemporary
Locations: Johnstown, Gallitzin Tunnels, Summerhill, Cassandra, Cresson,
Source: Rob McCormack
Conrail on former Pennsy trackage. Western Alleghenies provide a scenic backdrop. This is contemporary , in the pre graffiti era. There is a map, basic, it does help.
We have freshly painted Conrail quality locomotives, plenty of Amtrak too. Narrator doesn’t call-out types of diesels, he misidentified an SD50 as a GE locomotive. He also keeps comparing this rather bland era of railroading to the former great days of prr steam. That;s fine, except that he doesn;t know when to stop. It takes away from the Conrail story. Tell us about the 3rd generation power we see. Helper set mistaken for SD45’s are really SD40-2, not even close.
The usual modern unit trains, coal, auto rack, double stacks. The general merchandise freights still have mostly non graffiti boxcars. a plus for the railfan.
Summerhill and a former Pennsy stone arch bridge are the spot for much fast paced action. Again, narration misses the opportunity to inform us of any specific locomotive types.
At Cassandra, finally he identifies 6 SD40-2;s on a light power move. Wrong! Two are GP38’s.
Cresson is the most interesting portion. The night shots are the best thing in this program. Trainwatching is featured from a motel and a railfan observation platform. The 2 places are excellent for train video recording.
An unremarkable program, that contains too many mistakes, The script is a lightweight and seems hastily composed. The videography is decent, a few too many long shots though. Seems to me, this could have been a more satisfying program. Some opportunities were lost. Could have been more solid.
Is it a good train video? It certainly isn’t bad, should’ve been better.There is quite a bit of action and the 2nd half brings up the overall show.
Rating 3 Stars