• On this date in 1963

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

  by BR&P
December 1963 saw cold and snow. December 28th started at 3 degrees. By evening the temperature was in the teens but winds over 20 mph made it feel like below zero. On the report of a snowplow parked at Stonewood Avenue on the B&O, a couple diehard railfans hiked a mile or more down there from Barnards about 8PM, only to find out it was a weedburner the B&O had operated along the Belt Line to melt snow and ice from the switches. Maybe not quite as cool as a plow, but today it's a much rarer, or even extinct, piece of equipment, while plows can still be found.
  by C2629
For those two guys walking in freezing weather to find a train was a fairly common occurance. I know on more than one occasion they walked from Barnards to Charlotte in snow and freezing temperatures looking for the NYC first belt only to find out it was already long gone. Its hard to understand why they would walk all that distance for an every day common train like the NYC first belt. Just 3 or 4 RS-1s and a mile or so of train behind them followed by a 19000 series wooden caboose.
  by JoeS
Kind of reminds me of the guy who rode 5 or 6 or 10 miles to North Tonawanda on hot, muggy summer days in 1970 to watch the action on the PC and E-L Niagara Falls branches, Dock Line, Tonawanda Island, etc. Lots of ex-NYC E units, E-L GP-7s on the Falls run and the Lehigh Valley snowbirds on NE-1 and COJ-32. He didn't have the foresight or equipment to capture the scenes on camera.

There were trips (on foot) in the winter too... the weather was just a minor distraction when it came to watching trains. Snow too deep? Find another path to go from A to B. Wind too cold? Keep your ears covered and face away from it whenever you could.

What a different world it was back then... just telling our parents we were "going out" and were expected to be back by a certain time. No questions asked where we were going or where we went.