Rusted Rail's Ramblings
Thanks for stopping by my blog.
I plan on using it share my images and also what is going on in my life.
There will also be some pipe smoking content and tobacco reviews from time to time.
The Norfolk Southern celebrated their 30th Anniversary in style during 2012 as they brought Nickel Plate 765 and the Southern 630 out onto the NS tracks as goodwill ambassadors. Early morning in Wiliamson, West Virginia and the 765 is bringing its consist to the depot where NS employees and their families will be treated to a ride over the Pocahontas Division. Learn more about this piece of living history.
It is located on the Norfolk Southern Railroad still today and has a nicely restored depot (open limited hours) along with a couple of cabooses on display. There are plenty of seats to watch the passing trains. Amtrak passes through in the middle of the night both ways, but the trains don't stop here anymore.
We had the occasion to stop in Flowery Branch, Georgia for some quick photos downtown and also in the nearby graveyard.
Flowery Branch, which has transformed into a commuter community for Atlanta is in the middle of "modernizing" their downtown. Where once there were quaint old buildings (and a nice mural), now there are multi-use buildings and torn up streets.
The new farmers market is quite nice by the depot and when the construction is over the residents and visitors will have a nice experience I'm sure.
Down in the graveyard, not as much as changed over the years. There are still some interesting statues and also lots of historical graves. Many of the gravestones have faded with time to the point they are almost unreadable.
My favorite from the graveyard was this angel and companion.
The last of the shots for now from the Duluth Cemetery in Georgia. I always find the statuary fascinating.
We recently made a trip back down to Duluth, Georgia and while there visited the old cemetery downtown.
This had been a favorite photo location for us over the years. This time, the amount of changes made to downtown Duluth was more evident, including the condos in the background of one of my favorite statues. Duluth really did change during the nine years that I lived there and isn't the "quaint" downtown that I remember so fondly from when I arrived in 2013.
The Saturday Afternoon Post.
Located on Lake Hartwell, just across the state line in Georgia, the Travelers Rest Historic Site is an interesting place to visit.
A throwback photo today to my first trip to see the Southern 630 in steam at Chickamauga National Park.
I've always enjoyed photographing steam trains in action and some of my all time favorite photographs are of them in action or even standing still.
On our way back from Georgia this week, we stopped at Table Rock State Park located off of South Carolina Highway 11 in Pickens County, to stretch and take a few photographs. The Visitor Center is located on a small lake which has a nice pier for fishing. The main section of the park (lodge, camping, etc...) is located on the other side of the highway.
Out in front of the visitor center, there are several sets of rockers inviting folks to sit down for a few.
The image was taken with my Canon R7 and a 55mm/f2 Soviet-Era Helios M42 lens, using an adapter I purchased to make it fit on the RF mount. The lens is completely manual when it is on the camera and you have to adjust the settings on the R7 to "shoot without lens" for it to work. I'll share some more test shots with it, but it is fun to use and makes me think more than the regular 50mm.
My goal for 2023 is to get out and take more pictures. We kicked that off right on New Year's Day with a drive to Campbell's Covered Bridge, which is the only remaining covered bridge in South Carolina.
They are in the middle of restoration and improvements at the park, so it was challenging to find angles where there was no construction materials visible. The entire bridge has been repainted, so it has lost a little of the charm of aging that an old timer like this is entitled to. However, the fresh coat of paint will keep it in good shape for years to come.
This was the first time out with my new Canon R7 camera and the 50mm RF 1.8 lens. After shooting on a 5D full frame, it will take me awhile to get used to the 1.6x crop factor. The camera is easy to use so far and I'm quite happy with the sharpness of the "nifty 50".
Even small traditions can help make us appreciate the season. One tradition of mine is to open a tin of McClelland Holiday Spirit each Christmas to enjoy over the holidays.
McClelland stopped production in 2017, this years tin was made a couple of years before that in 2015, so it's now 7 years old. It's an aromatic tobacco with flavors of Dark Rum, Cocoa, and pecans added to the base of tobaccos. I'm not a huge aromatic smoker, but somehow the flavor combination says Christmas to me.
I enjoy smoking it in my Savinelli Saint Nicholas pipes. Each year, they release their Christmas pipes which have different accents on the stem based on that year's edition. I buy the 320ex, which is an author shape and has a great texture and a size that I enjoy. Combined with the Holiday Spirit tobacco, it puts me into as much of a holiday spirit as I can muster.
Add in a glass of Papa Pilar's Dark Rum which compliments the flavors and it makes a great evening.
I look back at 2022 and realize that I've managed to do a whopping six posts this year here on the blog. It's been a year full of changes, including relocating to a new state and also full of long hours of work.
My primary goal for 2023 is to get into a habit of at least weekly posts here. That will challenge me to create new images, which will hopefully get me out more to enjoy the photography I love, but never make time for.
I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season, however you celebrate it and I'll see you back here in 2023.