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St. Jodok am Brenner is situated in the Tyrol (DE: Tirol) region of Austria, on the Brenner Railway (DE: Brennerbahn; IT: Ferrovia del Brennero), between Innsbruck and the border with Italy at Brenner (IT: Brennero). Innsbruck is the nearest major city, although Matrei am Brenner and Brenner(o) itself are relatively close by.
Railway type and traffic
ÖBB provide all passenger traffic along the route, tending to use Rh 4024 'Talent' EMUs for S-Bahn Tirol (Line S4) services between Innsbruck & Brenner(o), and Rh 1216 'Taurus' locomotives for cross-border services into Italy (e.g. EuroCity services from Venezia/Bologna to München). Taurus locos (Rh 1016, 1116, 1216) are also used for RoLa lorry shuttles between Brenner(o) and Wörgl. The line has a heavy amount of freight traffic, from Rail Cargo Austria (ÖBB's freight arm) to private operators such as TXL, Lokomotion, and BLS; many of these private operators lease locomotives from companies such as MRCE, Railpool, Alpha Trains etc. The line is electrified throughout, so diesel locomotives almost never appear. Bi-directional working is also fairly common.
Leased locos that appear include: TRAXX (BR/Class 185, F140 AC; BR/Class 186, F140 MS), EuroSprinter (BR/Class 182/1116, ES64U2; BR/Class 1016, ES64U; BR/Class 183/1216/E.190, ES64U4; BR/Class 189/E.189, ES64F4), Vectron (BR/Class 193, or Re475 if BLS Vectron).
The most popular spot is on a ridge in a meadow, at the eastern end of the village. It is about 5 minutes' walk down from the Valser Landestrasse, a road that heads deeper into the valley. The view from here gives a wonderful panorama of the village, the railway and the surrounding mountains. Being an open field, shelter is scarce, so you may want to dress appropriately for the weather. The early morning dew is also plentiful here, so be sure to wear clothes/shoes that dry off quickly. In the summer, insects are everywhere, so pack some repellent unless you want to return home looking like a budget Michelin man! Two farmers live close by; one has no quarrel with photographers, the other is not a fan of them at all, so be prepared to make a hasty retreat if he starts yelling angry German phrases at you.
Light is best in the morning for most shots, though it is possible to move to another location in the village (there are plenty!) as the day goes on. Trains travelling in both directions can be shot from the ridge, though you can also head further down/up the slope parallel to the railway for a different angle. Videographers are probably better at the Bahnhof, as the hassle of a quick takedown (in the event of the aforementioned farmer) can often be more trouble than it's worth getting to the location in the first place!
The information on these pages is supplied for the benefit of railway enthusiasts who carry out a harmless hobby, and through the medium of photography and video, actually promote the railway industry. Railway enthusiasts can also act as eyes and ears against railway vandalism, and as such should surely be encouraged to do so by the supply of adequate information such as is found on this website.
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