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Fast CSX Trains and Foreign Power in Amsterdam, NY

This video has it all: thrilling fast freights, track speed meets, great horns at speed, chugging and howling GEs, nice scenic shots with the nearby Mohawk River, and power from every single Class I railroad except Kansas City Southern! Sit back and enjoy 20 minutes of CSX action at Amsterdam, NY.

On Labor Day (September 1st) 2014, I took a trip with my friend Brian up to CSX's Mohawk Subdivision in Amsterdam, NY to do some railfanning before the school year started. We got to the Amsterdam Amtrak station at around 10:30 AM, and we didn't have to wait long before the trains started as a fresh looking P42 #89, with an amazing 1st generation K5LA, came in with the northbound Adirondack.

Train 1: Amtrak Adirondack #69 - 9/1/14 10:47 AM
- Amtrak P42DC #89

Train 2: CSX Gondola Train - 9/1/14 11:23 AM
- BNSF ES44DC #7554 (Heritage III)
- BNSF ES44DC #7882 (Heritage III)
- CSX SD70MAC #4806 (YN3)
- CSX C40-8 #7558 (YN2)

Train 3: CSX Mixed Freight - 9/1/14 11:52 AM
- CSX C40-8W #7740 (YN2)
- CSX C40-8 #7493 (YN3)

Train 4: Amtrak Empire Service - 9/1/14 12:16 PM
- Amtrak P32ACDM #714

A few minutes after 714 pulled in, I noticed headlights coming from the other direction. I turned the camera to find a northbound autorack train bearing down on the other track. It soon screamed by the Amtrak with howling power. As the Amtrak left, it revealed the fastest freight train I have ever seen, thundering by on the other main. Those racks must have been doing 75 easily! It was quite a sight to see.

Train 5: CSX Autorack Train - 9/1/14 12:19 PM
- CSX SD60I #8725 (YN3)
- CSX C40-8

Train 6: Amtrak Empire Service - 9/1/14 1:43 PM
- Amtrak P32ACDM #712

After 712 departed, providing some more nice GE chugging sounds, I didn't have to wait long for more awesome freight action. A little while later, after I had mastered the local scanner feed, my scanner app proved useful as it predicted a fast CP tanker train with trackage rights that came southbound with two howling GEs on the point. However, another train had been tripping defect detectors in the other direction. This made sense a few moments later as I panned the camera on the foreign power to find an even faster CSX intermodal train about to fly past on the other track! The tanker train was so loud that I could barely hear the K5HL horn on the lead CSX GEVO. The awesome track speed meet caused a thrilling scene, with the Amsterdam station momentarily engulfed in a man-made tornado. The intermodal provided a great scenic shot as it rounded the curve up the Mohawk River.

Train 7: Canadian Pacific Tanker Train - 9/1/14 2:02 PM
- Canadian Pacific AC4400CW #9653
- Canadian Pacific AC4400CW #8651

Train 8: CSX Intermodal - 9/1/14 2:03 PM
- CSX ES44AC #3102 (YN4)
- CSX AC4400CW #592 (YN3)

Train 9: CSX Mixed Freight - 9/1/14 2:22 PM
- CSX AC4400CW #331 (YN3)
- CSX ES44DC #5476 (YN3)
- CSX ES44DC #5323 (YN3)
- CSX C40-8 #7581 (YN2)

Then came a favorite of mine: the Amtrak Lake Shore Limited, with Heritage and 1700 series baggage cars bracketing the train back in the days before Viewliner IIs. It flew past southbound at a what had to be a full 79 MPH! Strangely enough, it had an NEC P42 in the lead, which both had its original, relatively unscathed steel nose, and a great K5LA.

Train 10: Amtrak Lake Shore Limited #48 - 9/1/14 2:40 PM
- Amtrak P42DC #102
- Amtrak P42DC #95

Next was the best consist of the day on a southbound tanker train. The lead UP GEVO looked brand new and gave us a great hornshow with its awesome 2nd generation K5HL! And the 2nd unit, a BN-painted SD70MAC, had open engine doors.

Train 11: CSX Tanker Train - 9/1/14 3:16 PM
- Union Pacific ES44AC #8012
- BNSF SD70MAC #9553 (BN Executive Scheme)
- Norfolk Southern C40-9W #9728 (Thoroughbred)

Train 12: CSX Tanker Train - 9/1/14 3:36 PM
- CSX AC4400CW #440 (YN2)
- BNSF ES44C4 #8070 (Heritage III)
- BNSF AC4400CW #5668 (Heritage II)

Train 13: CSX Gondola Train - 9/1/14 3:52 PM
- CSX ES44AC #3103 (YN4)
- Canadian National ES44DC #2342

Train 14: CSX Mixed Freight - 9/1/14 4:15 PM
- Canadian National SD70M-2 #8936
- Canadian National SD70M-2 #8893

As it was well past 4 PM, we decided to call it a day. However, we realized another northbound Amtrak train was due to stop here soon, so after a short break we went over to a clearing in between the Fonda crossing and the station to catch it. But, a northbound CSX mixed freight came through first,

Train 15: CSX Mixed Freight - 9/1/14 4:45 PM
- CSX ES44DC #5436 (YN3)
- CSX C40-8 #7569 (YN2)

Train 16: Amtrak Empire Service - 9/1/14 4:51 PM
- Amtrak P32ACDM #709

After 709 came through with a nice hornshow and its smashed up steel nose (replaced in early 2015), we called it a day for real. We had an awesome time and hope to go back again for more fast CSX trains!

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