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My Webmaster has an interest in photography and in order to assist other photographers and video enthusiasts he has compiled this and its associated page to assist photographers in being in the right place at the right time to capture images of 86259.

For the long summer evenings, or for those who favour moody photographs taken at or near dusk, the return timings are also given although actual times will be dependant on any delays accumulated during the excursion and, early in the season, it will actually be well after dark.

Having worked out the estimated time of arrival of 86259 at your chosen photographic location you need to allow a margin for the train running early and of course a reasonable amount of time for you to unload and assemble your equipment. Where the side of the engine/train is not 'contre jour' (in shade) he suggests use of a circular polarizer to eliminate reflections from the paintwork and windows and to achieve a deeper blue in the sky (if there is any blue up there to be darkened!). Pre-focus the lens and then turn the polarizer until the blue of the sky is at its darkest.

Here is a link to the page which will show at a glance on which days 86259 will be travelling on the West Coast Main Line with the times when the loco is expected to be travelling through particular sections of that line. Bear in mind the direction of travel to estimate times at intermediate locations.

On days when the Cumbrian Mountain Express is running then a further photo opportunity presents itself at Farington siding, a mile or so south of Preston and close to the M5, where the Farington Road (A5083) crosses the West Coast Main Line on a road bridge. 86259 waits here from shortly before the time the steam engine is due back from Carlisle with the coaching stock in order to provide a fast trip back to London. The line from Burnley can be seen from this vantage point as can, daylight permitting, the couplings/uncouplings involved in swapping over locomotives.