Sunday, December 20, 2015

Chasing the Polar Express

I decided to go chase the Pere Marquette 1225 yesterday.  It was the last Saturday that I could do that.  If I were riding, it would have been an hour ride and about a two stay in what they called the Christmas Village.
 The trip started in Owosso near the Steam Railroad Institute there.  I was actually thinking about taking this trip this year but I thought about it too late.
 But I didn't need tickets to take pictures.  Besides, if I were going to do it, I'd probably ride on one of the later rides so that I could get pictures from the earlier ride.
 The Pere Marquette 1225 is the engine that the Polar Express was based on.  They used it for the computer model.
 A shot of her drive wheels.
 A puff of smoke.
 With a road number of 1225, it is appropriate that this train is associated with Christmas.
 One of the engineers.
 The train pulls back to link up with the passenger cars. 
 Another view of that.
 One more shot as I headed to the car to start my chase.
 I decided to catch her as she was about to leave Owosso.  She's wasn't moving too fast here.  It was pretty cool to hear all the sounds of a living steam engine.
 Another view from that spot.
 Next I stopped at the Carland Grain Elevator.  That is probably the most common spot to catch pictures.  And there were people there to prove it.
 Trying to get the train and the elevator in the shot.
 Another shot of the engine.
 One of the three cabooses attached to the train.  Believe it or not, it cost $1500 to ride these.  Although it sounds like an experience to remember.
 The trailing engine used to bring the train back.
 I stopped at another spot to catch it.  I actually liked the pictures from here.  It was set up so that other people couldn't get in the shots.
 The train gets closer.
 I would have liked this shot more if I weren't shooting into the sun.
 I really like this shot.
 I found another spot where I could get an almost straight out shot.
 Another shot of the trailing engine.
 The train pulls into Ashley.  This is where the trip ends and this is also where they have the Christmas Village set up.  I didn't get any pictures of that though because I had to move on.
 Another straight out shot.
 The engineer tending his stead.
 This is probably my favorite angle.

 One of three cabooses.  Used to be owned by the Ann Arbor Railroad.
 Another caboose.
And the Pere Marquette caboose.  Although it seems like these should be on the end of the train.

I really think I want to ride it next year but if I do, I'll take the evening one so that I can catch pictures of the earlier one.  I was hoping there would actually be some snow on the ground.  It doesn't seem very polar without snow.

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