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My Worst Railway Photo

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My Worst Railway Photo

Like most railway photographers, I am usually happy with the photographs that I take. But not this one, why? Have a guess………. go on………OK, it’s because of the weather.

Mother nature can also be a disadvantage! Taking steam train photos in heavy rain can be very hard and something that many would rather avoid.

For me, I am honestly not that keen on this photo. If you like it, then thank you.

Rail Tour

On the 28th September 2021 the ‘Mayflower to Devon & Cornwall’ rail tour was due to come down to Plymouth. It had two very nice steam locos on the front, LMS Jubilee Class No: 45596 ‘Bahamas’ and LNER Thompson Class B1 No: 61306 ‘Mayflower’. I was determined not to miss getting a photograph of it.

photography disappointment, Disadvantages of weather conditions


The day before the rail tour the local weather forecast said that tomorrow (28th September) will be a rough day. Usually, I do not go out in the rain etc with my camera. But with these two steam locos, I wanted too.

Steam Tour Day

In the morning the weather was horrible, windy, dull and lots of rain. At home I was saying to myself, let’s hope at teatime the weather will have calmed down.

It didn’t. But I still went out. I drove to my family friend’s farm bridge on the Rattery Bank just outside of Totnes. I got there a good hour before the tour was due. The weather was still horrible.

While stood out in the heavy rain, I checked my camera settings. On a dry light day my settings are usually F8, 1/000 and ISO 400/500. Today it was F5, 1/800 and ISO 3200.


LMS Jubilee Class No: 45596 ‘Bahamas’ and LNER Thompson Class B1 No: 61306 ‘Mayflower’ are seen climbing Rattery Bank working the 1Z43 Exeter to Plymouth ‘Mayflower to Devon & Cornwall’ tour on the 28th September 2021.

Reasons I am not keen on this photograph

1. The dark light. This was what made me use not the best camera settings.

2. It is not as sharp as usual.

3. There is a high amount of noise showing in the photo. That is because of the ISO 3200.

4. I intended to send this photo to a railway magazine, but I didn’t.


Will I go out again in bad weather to get a photo of a rail tour? Probably. Did you go out in bad weather to get a photograph? 

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