With Thanksgiving behind me, I would have Saturday free to photograph and wanted to capture the holiday spirit that trains have a special way of bringing out in people. The New Hope and Ivy, Black River & Western, Delaware River Railroad Excursion, and Allentown & Auburn are all within a 90 minute drive and a scan of their respective websites showed each operating a holiday themed train that weekend. Solely based upon the scenic landscape possibilities and its newcomer status, I decided that the Allentown and Auburn Railroad would be my destination for the day.
From their website, I knew that their first scheduled run of the day was at 10am from the Kutztown station. What I didn’t know was their operational plan. My assumption was that their locomotive, a vintage SW-1 switcher painted in a nice Reading Railroad influenced scheme, would overnight at the engine-house in Topton and run to Kutztown to start the scheduled excursions. While my start was a bit later than planned, I figured that the train wouldn’t get to the Kutztown station much sooner than needed and set my sights on getting to Topton to hopefully catch them running light to the station.