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Orlando and DeLand railfanning

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2016-03-22: This site is being moved to my main site at https://kevininscoe.com/wiki as part of a consolidation to one domain.


Also see my Train schedule for Orange City, FL.

CSX Subdivision: Sanford

Map of the line

Central Florida Historic Railroads

The "A line" runs from The Port of Tampa, FL through Auburndale, FL up to Richmond, VA. It is the rail line that passes through downtown Orlando, Winter Park, Sanford, DeBary, Orange City and DeLand. Scheduled traffic includes six Amtrak passenger trains, some CSX freight (mostly intermodal and mixed), unit coal to and from Orlando Utilities Curtis H. Stanton Energy Center in Avalon Park, FL (map) (OUCX reporting mark) as well as a daily foreign transfer train (Z915) from the FCEN into and from Lake County, FL.

From Orlando to DeLand this is the main rail line your would be chasing. On the east coast of Volusia, Flagler and Brevard Counties there is the FEC that runs from Jacksonville to Miami.

Locals:

http://www.georgiarailfan.net/csxtrains/LCL-FL.html

A764 - 2nd Sanford Switcher (pm) - Sanford to Benson Junction to DeLand (as needed) and return to Sanford

A766 - Sanford Switcher (am) - Sanford to Benson Junction to DeLand (as needed) and return to Sanford

A775 - Taft Switcher - (am) Taft to Longwood and return

A776 - 1st Taft Switcher (daytime hours) - Taft Yard switcher

A777 - 2nd Taft Switcher (pm) - Taft Yard switcher

A779 - Taft Auto Ramp (daytime hours) - Taft auto ramp switcher

A784 - Taft Switcher (pm) - Taft Yard switcher

A786 - Taft Switcher (all night) - Taft Yard switcher

A798 - Taft Switcher (early morning) - Taft to Kissimmee to Poinciana to Davenport and return

Switchers:

See the above locals for CSX switchers in the Orlando-DeLand area.

Amtrak has it's own switcher on the Aloma Branch for assembling Amtrak autocars once in a while it will occupy the Aloma Branch and so you will hear get permission.

Yards:

Rand Yard - Sanford (map)

Kaley Yard - Orlando south of the Amtrak station is all but abandoned in favor of Taft however if light rail ever comes it will probably come back to life. (map) (pic) (pic)

Taft Yard - South Orlando (map). Taft has a TOFC (Trailer On Flatcar) auto loading and unloading area right behind a convenience store.

Passenger stations:

Palatka passenger station

DeLand passenger station - see http://www.trainweb.org/usarail/deland.htm

Sanford passenger station has been closed since 1997 but the building is still there and you can be dropped off there but not picked up - no baggage handling. This is generally a good safe place to railfan. At night consider the near by neighborhood however I have spent many a night here in my car and felt quite safe. No one bothers you despite a CSX crew trailer right next door which is partially why I feel safer. CSX crew changes happen here with Jax crew so this is a good photo spot as trains will often sit here for crew change. This is not however an Amtrak passenger crew spot the passengers keep to a tight schedule pausing only for water refills and passenger drop off. Be sure to have a good vehicle antenna and a good mobile receiver as both DD's (defect detectors) are a number of miles away (you are right between them). Orange City ten miles to the north (which is hard to pickup it's low) and Longwood four miles to the south (easier to pickup).

Sanford Auto-train station - on Persimmon Avenue.

Winter Park station

Orlando Amtrak station

Kissimmee Amtrak station

Defect and hotbox detectors:

MP A726.6 Seville,FL (hotbox)
MP A734.6 Barberville, FL (hotbox)
MP A737.9 Barberville, FL
MP A750.0 DeLand,FL (Junction w/DeLand Spur)
MP A755.4 Orange City, FL
MP A760.8 Benson Junction,FL
MP A766.3 Sanford,FL (Junction w/Aloma Spur)
MP A776.1 Longwood, FL (hotbox)
MP A778.4 Longwood, FL
MP A785.6 Winter Park, FL
MP A790.4 Orlando, FL (Junction w/Florida Central Railroad)
MP A798.4 Taft, FL (Junction w/Stanton Lead Spur)
MP A801.0 Taft, FL (South Orlando) (hotbox)

Spurs, double track, branches and sidings:

MP A737.9 Barberville siding 10088 feet

MP A750.0 DeLand siding 11237 feet (Jct DeLand Spur) See also DeLand Spur

MP A760.8 Benson Junction siding 10207 feet (Enterprise Jct)

MP A766.3 Sanford siding 15228 feet (Jct Aloma Spur - This is by far the longest siding in the area and it often used for very long trains which are not that common through Orlando any more)

MP A778.4 Longwood siding 7811 feet (extends to just south of SR 427 with the NB only connection at N. Longwood St at E. Church Ave.)

MP A790.4 Orlando siding 6813 feet (Jct FCEN RR)

MP A798.4 Taft siding 6989 feet (Jct Stanton Lead Spur)

MP A808.0 Kissimmee siding 8099 feet

DeLand spur. Rarely used mostly to a cement company on the truck route. MP prefix ASE. Tracks still maintained.

Aloma branch (spur). Mostly abandoned with rails removed. Sanford to SR-427. MP prefix AU. Aloma branch (spur) connects with the A Line after Pecan Ave. in Sanford and ends on the north at W. 3rd Street and to the south with the tracks ending at County Road 427. The rest of this now abandoned line because a state property and is a rail to trails project now. The only traffic on the Aloma any more is Amtrak switchers.

Sanford spur runs along McCracken road and is unused and unmaintained. Several spurs run parallel to the now closed passenger station.

Stanton spur branches at Orange Avenue at East Wetherbee Road in South Orlando (map) that runs cola trains to the OUC energey plant (see above). MP prefix ALK (resets at 0).

NEDT - North End double track ends just north at Winter Park at MP A784.7 north of N. Denning Drive.

SEDT - South end double track starts at just north of W. Pineloch St. in Orlando at MP A791.8. (map).

Junctions and interchanges:

Benson Junction (see above). Used to be known as Enterprise Junction an abandoned FEC interchange from Enterprise, FL to Edgewater and Titusville now known as the East Central Regional Rail-Trail

FCEN downtown Orlando at A798.4. This is at N. Gertrude Ave. and W. Jefferson St.

Railfan spots:

DeBary Benson Junction Rock at MP A760.8 (map). Security is tight here and it is easy to trespass watch your step here (usual caveats apply).

St. Johns Bridge tender.

Church Street Station. There is an old railroad depot there.

Stations:

CSX Stations in Florida

Re-routes:

If the S line is in maintenance trains sometimes will be re-routed over the A line through Orlando which has happened before such as the Juice train (K650).

Train symbols can be found here: http://www.csxrailfan.com/moretext.cfm?ID=54

FCEN (A.K.A. The Pinsly Line A.K.A. FCRR):

The Florida Central Railroad (FCEN), based in Plymouth, Florida, is a division of the Pinsly Railroad Company, a short line and has been in operation since 1986 when it took over ex-CSX trackage in Florida. The Florida Central Railroad operates over trackage once owned by the Atlantic Coast Line. Essentially a branch, this line diverges northwest from Orlando (and a connection with CSX) to connect town such as Winter Garden, Lake Jem, Sorrento, and Umatilla. Under ACL ownership this line reached as far north as Altoona and did not end at Winter Garden as it does now. Instead, the trackage continued westward to Trilby where it connected with the railroad's western Florida main line (which is still in use by CSX). After the formation of CSX Transportation in the mid-1980s the new carrier cut back the route to Winter Garden and also abandoned a few spurs to the north and south near the town (which served Howey and Phillips). The history of the ACL line dates back to the Plant System (as in Henry B. Plant). In the mid-1980s, not long after CSX's creation it began to shed large amounts of what it considered redundant trackage all across its system between Pennsylvania and Florida. This included former ACL and SAL branch lines in the Sunshine State and in 1986 it sold much of the trackage to the Florida Central Railroad that it now operates. In 1990 the railroad added about 8 miles of additional track from CSX although it cut back a few miles of line near Winter Garden in 1998 to reduce congestion the busy downtown area.

http://www.pinsly.com/companies/fcen/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_Central_Railroad_%28current%29

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinsly_Railroad_Company

More on this will come as a separate page in the future.

FEC:

More on this will come as a separate page in the future.

Excursions:

http://www.orangeblossomcannonball.com/

Mount Dora Scenic Railway - Operated year-round the Mount Dora Scenic Railway (based in Mount Dora) features an hour-long ride through Florida's Lake County. Also known as the Mt. Dora Doodlebug. Now closed. - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FaYAjSWCZs

Inland Lakes Railway - Closed. - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GDeAdRCSeI

Radio feeds:

http://www.radioreference.com/apps/audio/?feedId=5217

(:tags rail:)


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Page last modified on February 19, 2013, at 03:38 PM EST