Steam in the Autumn

Steam in the Autumn

Railway Productions

Format : DVD

Length: 2 hours

Time Period: contemporary

Locations: Pennsylvania, Maryland and Ohio.

Producer: Les Jarrett

This volume is from a four-part set.

I have received 3 volumes, sans Winter.

I was wondering how one of these shows look. Covering the basic 4 seasons of the year, each has its own special opportunities for photography. The combination of steam and fall colors seem just right for October. Naturally, this will only be accomplished in the 21st century on photo charters, fan trips and museum excursions.This show features some chartered photo trains.These are mainly post year 2000 outings, in different years for this collection.There is a nice chapter menu that options on/off narration. Rudimentary maps are sometimes displayed for the short routes.Let’s roll this picture…

Ohio Central is at Sugarcreek, PA. OC is a working, diesel-powered carrier.It runs steam specials for a good time. The show leads with a Grand Trunk Western #6325. (Northern type 4-8-4). It is a large locomotive. This is on a typical passenger excursion. Farmland setting. Next, they do a freight train with 6325. Better background of fall colors and trees. Up in the cab with the crew. This freight segment is the best of the pair.

New Hope & Ivyland at New Hope, PA. Featured with cab ride action. Watch the crew work and view that hot firebox. A bit unspectacular after that cab. Nice trees.

Strasburg Railroad at Strasburg, PA. This one is a fine chapter. Not only do we get Canadian National 4-6-0 #89 on the point. Restored 1920’s era wooden freight cars are in tow. Add a northeastern Strasburg cabin car, and we are in business! Norfolk & Western gives us additional action from earlier film. Check the black & white shots. Does that look authentic, or what?

Ohio Central at Coshocton, OH. has larger, mainline equipment on parade. They run on a double-tracked mainline. Former Pennsylvania Panhandle Line mainline trackage. This is an action packed sequence. Two trains running the same direction on the parallel tracks. A freight and a passenger special smoke it up ,large! A Grand Trunk Western 4-8-4 #6325 pulls regular freight cars, including a train of empty coal hoppers. An Ohio Central 4-6-2 doubleheads with the GTW engine. Fine steam action with the two trains.

East Broad Top at Rock Hill Furnace. EBT is a famous narrow gauge line in Pennsylvania. Abandoned in 1956, this 33 mile line is still in place. All of the original 1900 era facilities intact. It is as if the railroad was frozen in time. Five miles are used for tourist trains. EBT #14 has some hoppers with a traditional red caboose. The steam whistle reverberates in the hilly countryside. The ‘armstong’ turntable is too much! An excellent featured chapter.

Western Maryland Scenic Railway at Cumberland, MD. A Western Maryland ‘ fireball logo’ steamer sure  looks sweet. A 16 mile long track gives us running room. 2-8-0 734 is a Baldwin from 1916. Cosmetically altered to appear as a WM original. it’s not one. The fake freight does get some stunning steam up and the fall colors are fine. The heavily weathered freight cars give an authentic vibe to this train. it runs with a wide vision caboose..oh well. Helmstetter’s Curve is the big highlight. Brush Tunnel, cab ride and train in the fog are more highlights. Outstanding visit to this line. This extended feature chapter is a really fun one!

The videography is first-rate. Modern era picture and crisp sound. Creative touches add spice to the scenes. Some of the scenic operations were true bell ringers. Others were good, but less of a thrill. Overall, a high quality train video.

On the whole, this show does offer something for everyone. It is an action oriented program. Minimal, professional narration, with the option of just natural sound sans narration. Oh, kids will adore this show. All that smoke, bells, whistles, and plenty of good, old-fashioned steam train action. See the companion shows for more great trainwatching!

Rating: 4 Stars

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