Postcards from Pittsburgh - October 2000

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"Kiss It Goodbye" The Last Ever Pirates Game at Three Rivers Stadium

Game on! The very last match before the Pirates leave Three Rivers Stadium for ever.
1 October 2000

At last, a home run for the Pirates. The crowd rises to celebrate.

After the match (The Pirates lost to the Chicago Cubs 10 - 9) we say goodbye with fireworks.

A beginners' guide to watching baseball. What's it all about?
Here are the real fundamentals - Nachos, double cheese and a pint of beer. What more could you possibly want?
Who cares about the game!

Portersville Steam Fair

A traction engine providing power for the cider press, the sawmill in action, and one of the impressive array of old tractors on display. Incidentally, I learned today that in America, cider is non-alcoholic. Shame!
7 October 2000

Autumn foliage under an ominous sky at Moraine State Park
7 October 2000

The court house building in the pleasant town of Butler.
7 October 2000

Altoona Railfest

8 October 2000
First, an excursion to Galetsin via the famous Horseshoe Curve.

Old locomotives at the Altoona museum.

New and rebuilt units at Juniata Locomotive Works

Inside the enormous Hollidaysburg Car Shops, where freight wagons are repaired and rebuilt.

Finally, a visit to the Horseshoe Curve to admire the view and the passing traffic.

Niagara Falls11 October 2000
From left to right:
The American Falls with the Horseshoe Falls beyond.
The Maid of the Mist lives up to her name.
The American Falls look spectacular from the water.

The Maid of the Mist draws close to the Horseshoe Falls.

We rounded the day off with a helicopter ride and the chance to take some pictures from a different angle.

The Oil City and Titusville Railroad provided a very pleasant rural trundle through Oil Creek valley, the location of the world's first commercial oil well and a subsequent "oil rush" but now completely returned to nature.
12 October 2000

Ice Hockey

A visit to the Mellon Arena to watch the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Tampa Bay Lightnings 3-2. In my opinion, much more exciting than either the football or baseball, although we saw only two fights and no blood!
13 October 2000

The New River Train has been an annual event for many years, providing a scenic ride from Huntington WV up the Great Kanawha River and through the New River Gorge.
From left to right, our two Amtrak locos (GE type P42DC), the New River at Hawk's Nest, and a shot through the trees of some white-water rafting idiots.

A brief pause at Thurmond to look at the small railway museum and walk across the bridge carrying the Mount Hope Branch over the New River.

The trip ran to Hinton, a small (I could only find one pub!) town where they welcomed eighteen coach loads of visitors with a "Rail Day" festival.
Here we see a church at Hinton, and the train waiting ready for the return run.
22 October 2000

The last run of the year of the Potomac Eagle train took me along the South Branch River from Wappocomo to Moorefield, West Virgina. A regular feature of this line is sightings of rare Bald Eagles and I was fortunate enough to see some in the trees.
(Sorry - I didn't manage to get a photo of the eagles.)
28 October 2000

A quick tour of the architecture of the nice town of Cumberland in Maryland.
There's two things wrong with this place - Firstly, the "musac" in the main street, and secondly, the layout of the roads which is so confusing that I got lost four times!!
29 October 2000

The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad runs the Mountain Thunder steam excursion from Cumberland MD to Frostburg. The outward journey is uphill all the way and requires some spectacular effort by the loco.

At Frostburg they turned the loco on the turntable, but this was just for show, and they turned it back again and coupled it to the rear of the train before an SD30 diesel hauled it back down the mountain to the restored station at Cumberland.
29 October 2000

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