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Fall Railfanning Trip - Sightseeing & Railfanning In Cleveland - October 18th, 2002

Fall 2002 Railfanning Trip:
Trainwatching In Berea, Ohio
Friday, October 18th, 2002

The RTA Waterfront Train that would take me to Tower City to catch my connecting train on the Red Line.

Another view of the beautiful Cleveland Skyline, this time from the RTA Train window.

A view of Cleveland Browns Stadium to the left with the NS Mainline and the RTA line shown in the lower right, we had to cross over the mainline in order to get to Tower City.

Some Notes On Berea:

   Berea is home to an interlocking tower which is no longer in use but is still standing. This originally was all Conrail Trackage until 1999 when Conrail was bought out and split up. Norfolk Southern got the Chicago Line in the transaction from CP-181 westward. Berea is located at CP-194. The other line that converges in Berea is the Big 4 Line which went to CSX and is now known as the "Greenwich Sub". CSX freights travel to Cleveland on the Chicago Line (aka "CSX Erie West Subdivision") and at CP-175 head down the CSX Short Line Sub around the Southeastern Side of Cleveland before heading through an interlocking at CP-17 on the Short Line that otherwise heads into NS's Rockport Yard (Formerly Conrail). On the Chicago Line, the trackage between CP-175 and CP-181 is used only by 1 NS Freight, Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited and a local train. The Big 4 Line (Greenwich Sub) at CP-17 heads down towards Indianapolis but most freights switch onto CSX's Ex-B&O Line in Greenwich which was home to the $282 million upgrade to double track the line, thus creating a "new" Chicago Line for CSX. The tower is a hot spot for railfans as there was at least 10 other railfans there when we arrived. You will see a serious amount of traffic here from both railroads, so if you have the time, make sure to have lots of film and bring your scanner! A great article about railfanning in Cleveland appeared in the December 2002 Issue of Railfan & Railroad Magazine, a good reference source if you plan to travel here for railfanning...

My friend Paul met me at an RTA Station and we caught a bus down to Berea. As seen in this photo is a Westbound CSX Freight headed down the old Conrail Big 4 Line towards Greenwich, Ohio and ultimately Chicago at 4:22pm. This line was upgraded and double tracked in 1998 just before CSX took over their portion of Conrail.

Here is a closer view of Berea Tower, no longer in service, the area around the tower is a hot spot for railfanning in Cleveland. It is safe to say that you'll see lots of traffic here throughout most of the day.

AC6000CW #674 leads this Westbound van train through Berea at 4:59pm.

Next up is this Eastbound Autorack Train with SD50 #8511 leading at 5:14pm.

AC4400CW #5010 leads a Westbound Van Train through Berea at 5:32pm.

NS Train #17-K heads past Berea Tower at 5:41pm with a former Conrail unit on the lead.

As far as I know, this is a Rail Grinder and it was parked on the CSX Main at Berea when we were there.

There was a large number of Westbound van trains headed through here today, witness this one with AC6000CW #673 on the lead at 5:50pm.

This Eastbound Autorack train was next up at 5:52pm with SD40-2 #8818 on the lead.

   And finally, this NS Westbound manifest passes by at 5:54pm. We decided to head back to the Amtrak Station at this time because the overall light wasn't suitable for much more photography as the sun was going to set in about a half hour or so. Berea was a great experience, and I'll definitely have to get back here sometime. One thing is for certain, you should always find other railfans here as this is a busy place. The next leg of my trip is coming up, click in the table below to continue...