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Entries in Surfline (1)


Review: Pentrex's "At the Throttle Cab Ride Volume 5 - The Surfline"

Pentrex’s latest episode in their popular “At the Throttle” series, “The SurflineMost rail enthusiasts and photographers have a few railroad DVDs or videos as part of our movie collections. At one time, it seemed, it was a requisite element for expressing your membership in the club - it was about ownership.

Before the proliferation of video cameras and content that we see today, it was rare to see a “movie” devoted entirely to railfanning in general, let alone on on a particular subdivision or topic.

Pentrex Railroad Videos and Books was one of the earliest suppliers of such content and have produced quality content ever since.

Due to my recent adventure in chasing the 3751 towards San Diego a few weeks ago, I ordered and watched one of their latest releases in a series of videos entitled “At the Throttle Cab Ride.” This particular video is Volume 5 in the series and covers the famous Surfline route of the former Santa Fe Railroad between Orange County and San Diego, California. 

For the uninitiated, “cab ride” videos typically provide you with an engineers view out the cab of the lead locomotive as it progresses over a particular subdivision or route. The are ideal to gain an appreciation for the line in general and to get a feel for the operational challenges that face the crews of the trains along the route. They also are invaluable in researching the next ideal location for a photographer to capture that perfect scene.

Owning all four previous volumes, I was eager to watch this offering covering the Surfline. Unfortunately, unlike the other volumes in the series, I felt that this release was hastily produced and offered little value to the researcher hoping to identify potential photo locations. There is not a complete run on one train over the entire route. Instead Pentrex opted to give you three different heavily segmented runs over the Surfline to include one shot from the third unit in the consist. Far from ideal in my opinion.

Given the quality videos that Pentrex is known for, I was disappointed in this installment of their “At the Throttle” series.

My Rating:  C

1 Hour 30 Minutes
In Color with Stereo Sound and Narration
Presented in Standard Definition 4x3 Format
ISBN: 1-56342-289-1
UPC: 7-48268-00572-5