Along the Pocahontas District

(8 customer reviews)

$29.95 $24.95

Travel back in time to southern West Virginia, deep in the heart of Appalachia, to experience the busy double tracked stretch of Norfolk Southern mainline called the Pocahontas District.

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Travel back in time to southern West Virginia, deep in the heart of Appalachia, to experience the busy double tracked stretch of Norfolk Southern mainline called the Pocahontas District. It’s the mid 1990s and you’re touring the famed “Pokey”, the Pocahontas Division, from Williamson to Bluefield to watch heavy coal trains labor upgrade and speeding time-freights rush across the system. This is the heart of coal country and the Norfolk Southern’s Coal fields.

The rugged terrain of this mountainous district has always been a challenge to the railroad. Numerous bridges carrying the tracks back and forth across the rivers are interspersed with eighteen tunnels that bore through the ridges along this line. The area’s steep grades bring most trains down to a crawl and helper engines are required on almost all eastbound trains. The long climb up to Elkhorn Tunnel is a steady 1.4 percent grade.

Coal is king in these parts. You’ll visit a coal mine where strings of hoppers are being topped off with this important commodity. Mine runs with cabooses are seen, as well as fleets of heavy mainline coal drags pulled by NS’s newest locomotives. The Pokey is a railroading adventure where the scenery is spectacular and the obstacles are met with brute horsepower and ingenuity.

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8 reviews for Along the Pocahontas District

  1. grandprixdaniel

    Along the pocahontas district coal trains and time freights is a part of the norfolk southern at it’s finest and absolute best I’d tell you

  2. 22chase22

    This video is easily one of my favorite ones in my collection. Me being from the area, I can tell you that Pentrex really took the time to get into some of these places. Another cool thing for me is that I saw a few guys that I know on the movie, most of them have since retired. It was shot in 1995 and the newest motors featured are the unique D9-40Cs. If you like mountain railroading, this video is for you!

    Chase Freeman
    Videographer-Green Frog Productions

  3. Dan

    Heavy trains battling steep grades … this is mountain railroading at its best! Add cabooses and the breathtaking scenery of Appalachia and you’ve got a “must have” video. The usual rock-solid Pentrex photography gives a good look at how the railroad deals with the challenges of the geography. “Along The Pocahontas District” was released nearly 25 years ago, and it’s still one of my favorite videos of a legendary railfan location.

  4. norfolksouthern4047

    Enjoyable program to watch. Travel back before the widecab locomotives showed up, and N&W signals were still the rule at most locations. Plenty of Helper Action. Have had this program for almost 20 years and is still a joy to watch. The small towns and amount of tunnels is an added treat.

  5. Samuel

    This was a great DVD. Lots of action. This was before widecab GEs and EMDs started dominating the market, lots of standard cab action. Beautiful scenery as always.

  6. andy weise

    If I had to set the scene, hot summer day, early 90s, hot summer, hills, coal, big six axle power. Coal trains, freights, and cabooses. This video was well done. I felt like it was more than just run-bys it was observing operations of a railroad. Another Fun Fact is that there is a dispatchers office video of this line but its only available in the “Working on the Railroad” DVD.

  7. John S.

    This video was so interesting that it made us decide to plan a trip to the Pocahontas and even though the footage is older it was a great help in finding some good locations. The history that the video gives about the line is very interesting. It also does a good job of capturing the rugged terrain in that area. The video does a good job of showing the grades, and many tunnels as well as coal operations along that district.

  8. rrvideoman

    Trains are always interesting, no matter of location, or size, or what they are hauling. But there is something majestic about big, long heavy coal trains in a mountainous type scene. This video, set in West Virginia’s Appalachian Mountains is a very fine video of just that. We see some beautiful scenery, long trains, some doing reverse moves on branch lines. Norfolk Southern puts on a fantastic show, with all the big power, and battling grades that really make make the trains work. A great presentation of a region that depends so much on the rails.

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