The focus of this trip was our participation in the 25th annual convention of AAPRCO, held at the B&O Museum in Baltimore, and our travels over some lines that are "freight only mileage" and/or "rare mileage."
Amtrak's Carolinian delivered us to Philadelphia, where Amtrak assembled the consist of the Eastern Section of the special train to the AAPRCO convention. Our special train, identified as "The Susquehannock", was powered by Juniata Terminal Company's restored E8 locomotives, PRR 5711 and PRR 5809. The combination of a special passenger train powered by these classic locomotives, its operation over sections of track that have not seen a passenger train in many years, autumn colors and good weather brought trackside observers out by the thousands. On Saturday, we left 30th Street Station Philadelphia and traveled west to Harrisburg. We then proceeded north on Norfolk Southern , through Sunbury and Renovo to Keating where we interchanged to the R. J. Corman Railroads. We arrived at Clearfield that evening to a huge welcome from the local populace. On Sunday, we operated excursion trips to 2 separate locations (Bigler and Cherry Tree) on the R. J. Corman Railroad. On Monday, we left Clearfield and headed south along R. J. Corman track to Cresson, where we interchanged to Norfolk Southern. We then headed west on NS' former PRR mainline, down the west slope of the Allegheny Mountains to Pittsburgh. We circled the city in a clockwise direction, crossing the Monongahela, Ohio and Allegheny Rivers, entering the Amtrak station from the west. On Monday, we departed Pittsburgh, following the route of Amtrak's Capitol Limited eastward over the Allegheny Mountains, thru the Cumberland Narrows and along the Potomac River to Point of Rocks, where we turned due east on the old B&O mainline into Baltimore. The special train was parked on the grounds of the B&O Museum.
After 4 days of enjoyable convention activities in Baltimore, the Eastern Section of the special train was reassembled on Sunday for the relatively short run up CSX (former B&O) to Philadelphia. That evening, Amtrak moved MOUNT VERNON and private cars J. PINCKNEY HENDERSON and PALMETTO STATE from Philadelphia to New York City, on the rear of Amtrak Mail Train #12, to position us for tomorrow's southbouind move on the Carolinian. It was an interesting experience - an AEM7 electric locomotive, a half-dozen material handling cars, one non-revenue Amfleet coach for the conductor to ride, and three private cars rolling northeast through the Garden State at 110 MPH on a relatively quiet Sunday night.
Our trip concluded the next day - Monday - when Amtrak's Carolinian took us from New York City back to Charlotte.
The Susquehannock parked on R. J. Corman Clearfield Cluster trackage in the middle of a residential street in Clearfield, PA. We spent Saturday and Sunday night parked on this street.
Sunday morning breakfast
is served as we depart Clearfield.
Doctor James Chapman enjoys
an after breakfast discussion with fellow traveler Meg Coughlin.
Pat Buechner enjoys a relaxing
Sunday excursion traveling along R. J. Corman lines in the Clearfield
area. Pat and her husband Bart are the former owners of private
car SILVER METEOR, which they refurbished and operated in the 1980s
and 1990s, prior to selling the car to a shortline in Michigan.
The Buechners relaxed and enjoyed their trip on MOUNT VERNON, free
of the burdens of private car ownership.
The Susquehannock, operating as Norfolk Southern
train 843, crosses to the west side of the Monongahela River at
Duquesne. MOUNT VERNON is the 5th car behind the locomotives.
Parked on the grounds of the B&O Museum during
AAPRCO's 2002 (25th annual) convention.