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Passenger Trains > Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/2020


Date: 02/13/20 18:37
Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/2020
Author: Passfanatic

Hello everyone, between 5/14/20 and 5/21/20, I am going to be in the DC area visiting friends. I am going to have a lot of time to railfan and a lot of it will be done during the rush hours as well as later in the days on the weekends. In DC, I will be staying with friends who live in Bethesda, not too far from the Grovenor-Strathmore Metro Station and close to the Kensington Marc station. I have railfanned places like Rockville Station, Kensington Station, Alexandria Station, and L'Enfant Plaza many times. I will probably go to these places again. I plan to go to those facilities but would like to add some more places to my list. I am considering photographing from the pedestrian bridge just north of Rockville Station as well as at Germantown. I plan to try to make it to Riverdale Park MARC Station. In Northern Virginia, I would like to go to Accotink Park during one of the evening rush hours.

During my stay in Baltimore, a railfan friend and I are planning on railfanning along the NEC between Perryville and Edgewood. We will stop in Perryville, Havre de Grace, where the bridge is, of course, Aberdeen, one of the causeway bridges, and Edgewood Station. I plan to railfan MARC at both Dorsey and Savage time permitting. I would also like to do some railfanning on the Baltimore Metro-ride those old Budd Cars before they are retired. I might look into spending a rush hour at BWI Station.

Thanks for any advice.



Date: 02/14/20 17:24
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: march_hare

Consider a trip out to Point of Rocks. It’s the jct between the old main out of Baltimore and the line up from DC that carries the MARC commuter trains. Legendary gorgeous depot at the junction.

Beyond that, Harpers Ferry is a good spot also.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/14/20 19:16
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Passfanatic

I would love to go out to Point of Rocks. I won't be driving on this trip and would need to have somebody drive me and as of right now, that might be tough. I'm not saying that it won't happen. Harpers Ferry is the same situation as well.



Date: 02/14/20 21:37
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: casco17

Unfortunately MARC offers no "reverse commute" service on the Brunswick line that goes through Point of Rocks, so no daytrips by rail are possible.

Fot another option, you could ride the NEC to the New Carrollton station. So long as you have a ticket for your "next train" you can watch a few trains from the elevated platform, including some Acelas and LD trains that pass through at speed.



Date: 02/14/20 22:01
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: erielackawanna

I'd ride to New Carrelton and then Uber to the next station north, Seabrook, for the moring rush hour. Great place and the sun (if it is out) will be on the MARC engines shoving into DC.



Date: 02/15/20 05:23
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Passfanatic

It is possible that I may spend part of a morning railfanning the am rush at Seabrook. I went there about 10 years ago during a morning rush hour in May and was very pleased. Yes, the Brunswick Line is strictly a rush hour service and it's a shame that I wouldn't be able to head back on the same route. If I have no access to somebody who can drive me, then I will likely just stick with not going past Germantown since many of the buses that run two way service daily don't go past there. 



Date: 02/15/20 06:06
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Cole42

Germantown is a nice place to go, I think it has a rustic feel in the middle of suburbia.  A place I always thought would be good to go is the metro station at Gallaudet U/NY Ave as it is at the throat of Union Station.  I have not had the chance to do so, but riding by on the metro made me think what a good place to watch the action of through trains plus the moves to Ivy City, although I do not know metro's policy of hanging out on the platform.



Date: 02/15/20 06:57
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Passfanatic

NoMA-Galledet Station-I went to a few times. It's a pretty cool station to watch the traffic coming into Union Station from the north as well as coming from the south. I may stop there for a little bit.

Back to the Germantown area-I see myself photographing the first two or three MARC trains at Germantown Station. If Amtrak Train # 29 is running ontime, then I may get him there. I plan to get a MARC train or two at Metropolitan Grove Station. I think I will probably photograph the last three MARC trains at Gaithersburg before heading back to my friend's apartment. I may stop at Washington Grove and get the 895 but it's also possible that I may grab dinner in Downtown Gaithersburg so I may photograph the 895 there if I grab dinner just after 7:00. If I go to Germantown and Gaithersburg on 5/15, then it's possible I may take the 871 from either Garrett Park or Kensington. If I stop at Kensington to railfan, I will probably do the morning rush there. I did it years ago.

 



Date: 02/17/20 11:01
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: bandob

Passfanatic:  You didn't mention it, but I suspect you've been there. If not, don't forget the top of the parking garage at Union Station. Yes, the wires can be a problem, but you still get a nice overview of all the action.

B&OBill



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/17/20 13:55 by bandob.








Date: 02/17/20 12:06
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Lackawanna484

The MARC station at Odenton is close to BWI, and offers lots of MARC and Amtrak.

Nice angles, too.

Posted from Android



Date: 02/18/20 18:37
Re: Passenger Railfanning Advice for the DC and BAL Area for 5/20
Author: Passfanatic

I have been to the top of the parking garage at WUS. It's a nice deck to watch and photograph the trains coming into Union Station from the north. I may spend a few minutes there.



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