Trains in the Snow


Photography Challenges.

While most (okay, probably all) of my posts showcase some of my photography, I often find that I struggle with finding the space to share all the photos that I’d like to share. This is mostly due to the fact that I don’t post every day and never more than once a day. There are photo challenges that I find myself not participating in due to that fact. I enjoy the photo challenges because they help me think out of the box and improve my photography skills. They teach me to looks through my lens in a new way.

Since today is the day that I often share doors as part of Norm’s Thursday Doors, I thought I’d see if this photography series was applicable to some of the other photo challenges in which I’ve participated. You’ll see links, as applicable, if you are interested in checking them out!


Photography Series.

Hmmm… I wonder what you’ll be seeing in this photography series. If the title didn’t give it away, the cover photo sure did.

That’s right! This photography series is “Trains in the Snow”.

When we had our first snow here in Roanoke, we decided to talk a walk along the Roanoke River Greenway. I shared many photos from that walk in this post. Β However, I saved my train photos to share as a series.

JPEG image-1CB7E5260B44-1

Train Under the Interstate.

The part of the greenway that we walked passes under the Interstate. I-581, if you’re ever in the Roanoke area and are wondering where this is located. We parked on Wiley Drive SW, near the hospital and beside the River’s Edge Sports Complex. From this location, the Roanoke River Greenway heads in both directions, following the Roanoke River. On this walk, we headed toward Smith Park. This was the capture of the train under the interstate.

Norfolk Southern operates 19,500 route miles in 22 states and D.C. Β Their trains often travel through town. Β In 2015, they closed their downtown Roanoke office building and relocated many workers. The building itself is a work of beauty, seen rising in the center of downtown in this post.

Their trains are often seen traveling through town and quite often seen parked along this stretch of track. My original intent in capturing this scene was because I liked how the columns looked on the overpass. If you’ve been following the blog for some time, then you’re well aware that I’m a huge fan of architecture. However, my attempt to capture the scene that I wanted was thwarted by many factors.

Norfolk Southern Train under Interstate 581

Behind the Columns.

The scene above was the photo composition that I wanted to capture. The train behind the columns. However, not only was it snowing pretty steadily, but there was water pouring down as a means of drainage from the overpass. What you cannot see in the photo is that between me and the train tracks is the expanse of the river. This was the only place in which I could stand to capture the photo and the barrage of water falling could not be avoided.

So intent was I on capturing the scene, that when the hubby asked me afterward if my photo had captured the “giant phallic symbol” graffitied there, I had no clue what he was talking about. When I then looked at the scene while not behind the lens, I wondered how in the world I had missed that. Luckily, the photo was composed in a way in which I could crop that graffiti out. Normally, I love graffiti, but this one, not so much. Plus, it said, “….is awsome”. I think it may have been someone’s name, but they couldn’t even spell awesome. That’s not so awesome.

We kept walking until we reached Smith Park. Miss Sunshine and I played on the swings and then we decided to head back to the Jeep. Across from the park, there is the continuation of the train tracks. There is a barbed wire fence separating the tracks from the park.

As I headed over to snap some photos, Miss Sunshine commented “Thursday Doors.”

Green Boxcar.

To be honest, I just loved how the trains popped against the fresh, white snow. But, Miss Sunshine was right, this green boxcar does have a door.

It’s also old, qualifying for Frank’s photo challenge. Plus it snows in “winter” and there’s a sign for “water”, qualifying for Cee’s photo challenge.

There’s something to be said about aged things. About aged people too. So much depth of character to be found.

Through the Barbed Wire.

While I am tall, I am not tall enough to see over the barbed wire. If you’ve seen many of my photos, you know that I am a fan of unique perspective, so I did not let that fact stop me from gathering my photos. I love the pops of color as seen through the barbed wire.

Since I typically shoot with a Sony Alpha 7II, which is a mirrorless camera, I have an electronic viewfinder and usually use that to compose my shots. Mostly, because I’m just old school like that, even though cameras are made for right-handed people and using the viewfinder presses my nose into the camera. I don’t really mind that though because being left-handed in a predominately right-handed world has made me extremely adaptable.

All that to say, that sometimes having the LCD screen with live view comes in handy. To capture the photo above, the camera was well above my head, but I could use the LCD screen to compose my shot.

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this little walk amongst the trains in the snow!

Trains in the snow


Let your light shine!



wpc: variations on a theme

18 thoughts on “Trains in the Snow

    1. Thank you! I loved the pops of color. They do make for some brightness on a gray day! πŸ™‚

  1. Love the photos. I have an entire album on flickr filled with train platforms and such like πŸ™‚ I should buy a bobble hat, and a notebook πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Jonathan! I find trains fascinating. I think it’s partially because I did not grow up with any in our city. I’ll have to check out the photos. I always enjoy your train station photos! πŸ™‚

    1. Debbie, Thank you so much for your kind words! I’m a harsh critic of my own work, so it is especially meaningful to receive this message πŸ™‚ Blessings to you! – Amy

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