The Gregarious Railfan
Point of Rocks, MD  21777 (population, 1,466)            

GPS: N 39.27409, W 77.53846   Google map   

Scanner:  CSX 161.100 [66], 160.320 [14], 160.230 [8], 161.520 [94]

Railroad:  CSX Baltimore Division, Metropolitan Sub; CSX Baltimore Division, Old Main Line

Description: Point of Rocks is the location of an important railroad junction and the site of one of the most
picturesque and best known of the historic stations of the former Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.  At this junction, the
ex-B&O Old Main Line from Baltimore, one of the oldest lines in the country, and the ex-B&O Metropolitan Branch
from Washington, D.C., opened in 1873, come together and continue west  as one line to Cumberland, Pittsburgh, and
Ohio.  All lines are now CSX.  The much-photographed Point of Rocks station presides over the junction from inside
the wye formed by the two main lines.  One of the most beloved inspirations of the noted B&O architect Ephraim
Francis Baldwin, the station was completed in 1876 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.  
Unrivaled for its Victorian architecture and magnificent setting, the station belongs on any railfan’s must-see list who is
interested in the history of the B&O, railroad station architecture, and photography.  (The station is used as an office
by CSX and is not open to the public.)  Point of Rocks is also a good place to watch trains.  Most of the traffic is
on the Metropolitan Subdivision and is made up of a steady stream of CSX freights to and from the west, the
weekday-only morning and evening MARC trains of the Brunswick line, and the twice-daily Amtrak Capitol Limited to
and from Chicago. A few freights a day also use the Old Main Line.  Despite its many curves that necessitate slow
speeds, the Old Main Line actually has lesser grades than the Metropolitan Subdivision, which can be an advantage for
heavy freights headed for Baltimore, such as coal and grain
Info from The Washington, D.C. Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, Inc.

Approximate # trains per 24 hours: 40+ split fairly even between CSX freight and MARC commuter   

Photo Opportunity:  The Historic Point of Rocks Station (which is not used for passenger service, but is a MOW
Historic B&O Station at Point of Rocks, MD