Train Depot at Mammoth Spring

Just Like the Old Days

Continuing with our visit to Mammoth Spring State Park in Arkansas, we walked around the lake to see the historic Mammoth Spring train depot. It was a nice piece of history and a good reminder of how things used to be in the old days.

Mammoth Spring Train Depot platform

The platform side of the station faces away from Spring Lake. Of course, that makes sense, because the train tracks would not be on the lake without a bridge, and it was much simpler to build a platform that was not on a bridge. Much of the station still looks like it did in the old days, even including the Western Union sign and some milk cans on a scale. However, a fence has been installed between the platform and the tracks. I am sure that was due to safety reasons because several trains came down the tracks each time that we were there.

Mammoth Spring Train Depot

The large covered area at the center of the station once again looks much like it did in days gone by. Except maybe for the historical marker sign in the foreground. The train depot actually houses a museum with free admission, but it has been closed on each of our visits. One of these days we will get there early enough to go visit the museum.

Mammoth Spring Train Depot

Above is a detail view of the open-air area of the train depot. An old cart is there, along with a bench for sitting, and the scale and milk cans seen in the earlier photo. A couple of electrical boxes and the fence along the railroad tracks are about the only reminders that this is a modern-day view.

Catfish and Frogs on the capitals at Mammoth Spring

The capitals at the top of the columns display to me a bit of a sense of humor. Catfish and frogs decorate the capitals of these columns, reminding visitors of where they are, near a river famous for its fishing. No doubt many passengers who disembarked at this train depot came there to catch some fish. I thought it was a fun touch. Architecture takes itself way too seriously these days and also tries to be too minimalist so that features like this are often lost to history.

Mammoth Spring Train Depot platform

Here is one more look down the platform, this time from farther back than that earlier photo. Just imagine how this area would be bustling with people when a train was at the station. People boarding the train, people disembarking, station agents loading the baggage. I bet it was fun!

Mammoth Spring Train Depot exterior

This exterior view of the train depot gives away its modern setting, thanks to the electrical meters and switches on the wall, along with the guy wire from the nearby utility pole. I suppose there have to be a few concessions for modern times. After all, places like museums do like to use electricity.

Something Different

Laura at the Mammoth Spring Train Depot

For all of the previous photos, I purposefully gave them a bit of a “vintage” look. More on that in the “About the Photos” section below.

But for the above photo of Laura on the train depot platform, I decided to use a much more modern look. For this one, I used the preset I had created for the Jaylin Goes to College photos. Complete with the same almost-real-looking-but-actually-fake sky. I liked the look of it, even if it does not quite fit in with the rest of the photos in this post. Who says they all have to match?

So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. - 1 John 4:16

About the Photos

As I mentioned just above, I wanted these photos to have a somewhat old-style, vintage look to them. To me, the photos just did not look quite right with all of their bright, modern colors. And besides that, the sky was blown out in most of the photos due to the angle of the sun and the late afternoon time of day. So instead of using the fake sky (which is easily done in Luminar AI, by the way), I decided on the vintage look. I came up with a preset that I used on each photo with some slight modifications each time to give each one just the right look. It is probably still obvious that these are recent photos, but I like the feel of them. And hopefully, you do, too.

Photo: Each photo is a single Raw exposure, processed in Luminar AI. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Sony Alpha A7 II
Lens: Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS Lens
Date: August 7, 2021
Location: Mammoth Spring State Park Park, Arkansas

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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.