It's only mid-afternoon but the shadows already cover the valley floor in the West Virginia coal fields. A mine run has placed its empties and will now gather the loads.
The gray clouds suggest that more snow is in the forecast as NS 856 pauses at Falls Mills while pushers couple to the rear to aid in the assault of the grade approaching Bluefield Yard.
Eastbound NS 274 approaches the 90 degree left hand turn at Bluefield, Virginia and the upgrade grind to Bluefield Yard at Bluefield, West Virginia.
A trio of engines pass the recently refurbished "Bluefield Interiors" sign as they shove 83J up the hill into Bluefield Yard. The foreground track is the start of NS's Clinch Valley Line... (more)
NS 856 exits the east portal of Cooper Tunnel at Bluestone, WV.
Empties pass through Falls Mills on their way back to the West Virginia coal fields.
An eastbound coal drag climbs through Maybeury, WV.
NS 859 pauses just east of the east portal to Cooper Tunnel to pick up loads off the Bluestone Branch, which extends off to the left. After picking up the loads, pushers will couple to the rear fo... (more)
An eastbound freight leans into the curve at Bluefield, Virginia. The track in the foreground is NS's Clinch Valley Line.
The conductor, the dapper gentleman on the left, had about six more months until retirement. Although he had been offered a lump sum to take early retirement, he figured that by the time taxes, wi... (more)
A mine run pauses beside a collection pond, coal dust and mud as it prepares to work the tipple at Premier, WV.
A westbound train of empty hoppers exits Cooper Tunnel.
Eastbound coal loads roll onto the massive bridge structure at Coopers, WV.
Eastbound autoracks cross the massive bridge at Coopers, WV approaching Coopers Tunnel during an early spring snow fall.
The Lehigh Valley heritage unit leads a westbound pusher set as it waits for a recrew at Falls Mills.