HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Rail bridge reaches its century mark

Written January 19th, 2021 by Hasso Hering

Watching a freight train crossing the river on the “Toledo District Willamette Bridge” on Tuesday made me realize something: This is a big anniversary year for that steel structure spanning the river at Albany. It was built 100 years ago, in 1921.


Adventures, sort of, at a grade crossing

Written December 8th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

Two things I had not seen before I happened to stop at the Second Avenue railroad crossing in Albany on Tuesday afternoon. One was the remarkable mural visible from the track. The other was the crossing gates coming down again and almost nailing a couple of cars after the train had passed. You’ll see what […]


Just wondering — why no crossing arms

Written October 21st, 2020 by Hasso Hering

  On a leisurely bike ride through old Albany the other day, I noticed something that wasn’t there. Where the Portland & Western Railroad crosses Sixth Avenue, there are no warning lights, bells or arms that come down when a train comes through.


Checking for problems along the track

Written September 29th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

It is mid-day on Tuesday, and this is one small part of the passing Albany scene: The Portland & Western is doing a routine track inspection on the Water Avenue line.


A puzzling tale about an odd little sign

Written June 29th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

In the Age of Corona and General Upheaval, you take your amusement where you can. So here’s something about an odd little sign. Actually two signs that looked about the same.


Slow going at the Queen Ave. crossing

Written May 11th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

Waiting at Albany’s Queen Avenue railroad crossing gives you plenty of time to contemplate one of the riddles of our time, such as why it takes ODOT so many years to get going on a simple project that doesn’t seem all that necessary in the first place.


A sign of work: Those stacks of ties are gone

Written April 17th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

Big stacks of rail ties stored along the Water Avenue railroad tracks near Burkhart Street in late February now are gone, and so is the aroma of creosote they gave off.

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