Over a couple of days in March around 60 people from all over the world came to Chattanooga, TN for a Lerro Productions Photo Charter at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum. This charter featured two steam locomotives (both have been featured in our posts before) in a variety of different scenes around the museum property and in Georgia. The charter began early on a chilly Monday morning on March 12th, 2018. The forecast called for snow flurries and not much of a warm up after that. I dressed in layers, but not nearly enough for as cold as it was this day!
Once the locomotives arrived and got on the train, the brakes were tested and the charter quickly began. After several runbys behind Grand Junction station, we moved up to the crossing at the museum entrance. The old cars added a nice touch to this scene. We shot a few different angles here and then went to the Chickamauga Creek bridge.
Around lunchtime, we all boarded the train and rode to Missionary Ridge Tunnel for a few shots there. The Missionary Ridge Tunnel was built in 1858, and is now the only horseshoe-shaped tunnel serving an active railroad in Tennessee today! This area is tight, and there wasn't much standing room, so I decided to keep toward the back, but was able to get a decent shot.
When we finished at the tunnel, we went to the East Chattanooga depot. The engine crews posed for a picture beside 630 and then we got some shots of the engines side by side and coming into the station. During this layover, the crews changed and Kyle and Travis were able to join us. We were all hungry at this point so we went and grabbed a bite to eat.
While we were out eating, the other photographers and the train went to the tunnel for some solo runbys with the 630 at the tunnel. We caught up to the train at Grand Junction, just in time for a dinner break and switching with the train. So while the other charter photographers went on a dinner break, Kyle and I stayed around to get a few shots we had in mind since we had already ate.
When we arrived on Tuesday, everyone boarded the train to go to Summerville, Georgia. I've chased this train on this route countless times, but the freight train behind the locomotives is a very nice change of the usual passenger cars. The vintage cars were also back for more unique accents, they really helped to make the scene for some shots!
After some time in Summerville, we then boarded the train for the return trip back to Chattanooga. We made a stop at the bridge in Trion for a few shots. The first runby featured both locomotives, and for the last three 630 was pulled off and 4501 made a few solo runbys. After that, the train returned to Grand Junction and the first freight photo charter at TVRM in years came to a wrap! It was very fun and hopefully something that happens more in the future!