Hi, I'm Michael Hurder!

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Niles Canyon Railway - 2020
On 12/6/2020 I rode on a fundraiser/photo shoot for the restoration of the Southern Pacific #1744, a Class M-6 2-6-0 "Mogul" type steam locomotive built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works for the Southern Pacific Railroad in November 1901. Images of the 1744 chassis and cab + #s 166, 173 & 185. About 40 people rode on a train pulled by an SW900 Diesel Electric Locomotive, SP #1195. We were following the "Skookum" Steam locomotive #7. History of the Skookum: Deep River Logging No. 7, named "Skookum" is a 2-4-4-2 steam locomotive. It was built in June 1909 by the Baldwin Locomotive Works for the Deep River Logging railroad, where it was used mainly on log trains. It was retired and abandoned in place in a forest following a derailment in 1955. As of September 2018, it was nearing completion of restoration to operating condition at the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad shop in Garibaldi, Oregon. Its first steaming was the following month, but not before problems with its bottom-end (that of the low-pressure engine) were encountered. Afterwards, back to the shop it went, and once the problems are ironed out, Skookum returned to service by the end of 2018. It was completed in early 2019 and ran on the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad. It is in full operating condition. It was sent to the Niles Canyon Railway to be run regularly in July of 2019. History of the 1744: It operated for many years out of Oakland on the SP Western Division and in California’s Central Valley where the Moguls were fondly called “Valley Mallets” by their crews. The locomotive was made famous in later years by operating on several of the last steam railfan excursions on the Southern Pacific. After many years of operating around the United States, the #1744 is returning home to once again operate through Niles Canyon on the last leg of the transcontinental railroad. After retirement from service on the SP in 1958, the locomotive was operated at the Heber Valley Railroad, moved to Texas and restored for a brief period of operation in New Orleans. Iowa Pacific bought the locomotive and ran it on the San Luis & Rio Grande over Colorado’s La Veta Pass in tourist service during 2007 until it was sidelined with boiler issues. The locomotive was disassembled, boiler work started and then stopped. The locomotive has sat disassembled since 2008 with the boiler moving from Alabama to Texas and then back to Colorado during this time. The Pacific Locomotive Association is currently in the process of gathering the pieces together in Colorado for shipment. The boiler will be sent to a contract shop for repairs while the rest of the locomotive will be shipped home to Niles Canyon. The PLA plan to return the #1744 to service will not be a quick or inexpensive proposition but we are looking forward to the future when she will once again steam through Niles Canyon. ~
2020
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 24-70mm f:2.8 G2
Lick Observatory
My son Dylan and his wife Liz gifted me a very special night at the Lick Observatory for a great evening of photography. The Observatory is normally closed at dusk, so the scientists can get to work on their pet astro-projects, observing the universe as it passes us by. For several nights every year, however, they open it up to a limited group of visitors for fun. The invites are by purchase and my kids bought me a night. I hunted for the best night out of ten to make night images (one with no moon). The night I selected was September 28. I brought my grandson Scott who is also a camera nut and I asked my Dylan and Liz to do the driving, and to fill up the group of four allowed per ticket. As you can see the fog rolled in instead of a starry night. We hung around until 8:30pm, just in case. Conditions got worse (and cold), not better, and we still had to navigate the drive down the mountain in the fog, so we gave up the ghost. We still had fun and learned a lot about the Observatory and their work. This is one I'll try again in the future. The views should be spectacular.
2019
NIkon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
Trains
From the old school steam trains of the Roaring Camp Railroad, to the modern day Union Pacific Diesel -Electric (who knew they could corner like that?😲), and the mighty American Steam Locomotive Big Boy #4014. we love our trains. This album is dedicated to my grandson, Liam, pictured in #s 198 & 203 (with his father, Kenny). Liam is an avid train nut. His brother Scott is in #171. "All Aboard!" Also, who can resist a Redwood Faerie circle? The video is a compilation of all the above in motion.
2019
Nikon D850 DSLR
A variety of glass was used in this set.
Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco
I've gone on several shoots with Mike's Cameras, a local Camera store. None has been as satisfying as this one. What started out as a rather drab yet still dramatic shoot of the same architecture over and over, suddenly turned magical when they turned on the lights. WOW!
2019
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron: SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2, SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
Big Boy 4014
Big Boy #4014 thrilled America last year with a tour through the states reminding us all of the might of American Industry. What an awesome display it was, and oh man, that deep throated whistle.
2019
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2 / SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
A Livermore 4th of July
We are a small city here in California's San Francisco East Bay Community, but we love our country and we love to show it. BOOM!
2019
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
San Diego Harbor #2
VDHA #53 to #248: Our second day of the reunion was spent on a tour boat. These were three incredible hours traveling from one end of the harbor to the other. The US navy was the principle subject but San Diego's skyline and Balboa Park played a great second fiddle.
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
San Diego Harbor #1
VDHA #1 to #52 In October of 2018, we took a trip to San Diego for the Vietnam Dog Handlers Association (VDHA) reunion. Before the festivities started, I took an early morning stroll along the waterfront. This place, San Diego, has everything; from good weather to good food to gloriously gorgeous scenes. A cameraman's delight. PS: Don't ask me about the RV, folks. I really just don't know. 😉
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
Sonoma Traintown Railroad
This was a family outing. Here was a neat little display to delight the old and young train buff.
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
A Ferry view of the Bay
San Francisco is a great photo op no matter the perspective. This one is from a Tour boat ride through the bay leaving from Iconic Pier 39 on a Blue and Gold Fleet Ferry boat.
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
A bit of Old Sacramento
I took some Photography courses at Mike's Camera in Sacramento. After the class on Exposure we took a walk through part of Old Sacramento to practice what we had learned. I like Street Photography, old Architecture, and Retro too. I just don't get to do much of it. NOTE: Mike's Camera was looted last night, 5/31.2020. Another small business senselessly destroyed.
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
Livermore #2 - Memorial Day, 2018
Livermore # 144 to # 269 Memorial Day 2018 We remember always the price we paid.
2018
Nikon D850 DSLR
Tamron SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2 Tamron SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
San Francisco hosts the Blue Angels
In October 2108 I traveled to Yerba Buena Island on San Francisco Bay to capture the Blue Angels during their practice runs the day before the show. To say it was a spectacular day would be an understatement. WOW!
2018
Camera: Nikon D850 DSLR
Lens: Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD G2
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