Jack drifts down towards Leadhills station © Geoff’s Rail Diaries 2011 Towards the end of August, we felt the need for a trip to the north-west of England. It had been some time since I had last visited the Settle and Carlisle railway, and even longer for my companion Steve. "There's quite a bit of freight over the line these days..." We joined the M6 and headed towards Shap, identifying a spot near Docker Hall where, after one or two navigational difficulties, we were able to photograph a number of trains - mostly passenger, but also a southbound coal train hauled by 66 044. The Howgill fells provide a scenic backdrop for southbound trains at this location. Next, the journey to Ais Gill, via Sedbergh and Garsdale. We spent a couple of hours here - always a pleasant spot when the weather is fine. In that time, two sprinters and three freight trains passed. The two coal trains depicted here were hauled (empties, northbound) by 60 095, and (southbound) 66 114, seen crossing Ais Gill viaduct. A northbound gypsum train passed, hauled by 66 083, but, as sometimes happens, I hadn't quite positioned myself where I wanted to be - so you don't get to see that one... Time for another change of scene now - back to the west coast main line, this time on Shap bank itself. Rather than the usual linesiding, we tried one or two "trains in the landscape" shots. The location will possibly be familiar to those "friends of the M6" who frequent the excellent Tebay service area (which is visible in the background). There's a limit to what can be done with the latter picture, so we moved once again, southwards to the lineside just to the north of the site of Burton & Holme station, between Oxenholme and Carnforth. In the hour or so we spent here, several trains passed, including those illustrated (both southbound) in the company of 92 005 "Mozart" and 66 084. We moved on once more, but, as the early evening wore on, we failed to find anywhere very suitable for photography. We did manage a quick shot of 66 087 on northbound coal empties at Hest Bank, but the light had gone, so that one stays in the box too! And that was it - back to the M6 and home - another good day. 60 095 drifts down from Ais Gill summit 66 044 heads a southbound coal train near Docker Hall 66 084 southbound near Burton & Holme 66 114 heads a southbound coal train over Ais Gill viaduct "Mozart" 92 005 near Burton & Holme Northbound Virgin - train in the landscape