Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L Lens
Get more with explorest pro
Shutter Speed, Aperture, Focal Length, ISO

South Loop CTA view below L Train

As far as I know, the bottom tracks of this train are not active and this location is probably one of the few spots where you can be this close to the CTA lines. From top to bottom, you can fill your entire frame with architecture of the 'L' train and if you're lucky, you can capture two trains going in both directions. This spot just has a ton of grit and leading lines for you to experiment with, so play around with the composition.



Skill level

Public Location






  • Wide-angle lens (24mm)
  • Comfortable shoes

How to get there

N41° 51' 44.8214"W87° 37' 35.8388"
This image was taken in the South Loop, with a view of the CTA tracks under the L train. Head south on State St, make a left on 14th St. The first alleyway on your left is where you'll find this location. I wouldn't enter off the alley way entrance on State St as there are a bunch of cameras for the building next door. I've never had an issue with them, but that's also cause I've never walked that way. If you walk down the alleyway to the far corner, you'll see a concrete column that has little ledges for your feet to go and step onto. You'll have to climb to get up here, but it's easy. It's best to wear comfortable shoes for the climb up and especially the climb down. If you're with a friend, the first person can leave their gear on the ground during the climb. Once they're up, the second person can hand over all the equipment so the second person can make the climb without carrying any gear. Note: You should not attempt to photograph this location if CTA workers are present. Come back at a later time and if they aren't there, don't spend too much time at this location. You're on the track, there are cameras around and there's a CTA office right above you. Be quick about your time here.


Get more with
explorest pro
Learn more about the locations and
how to get the best pictures including:
Best times to go
Current weather conditions and times around twilight
Field tips
Gear used & photo settings
What to do nearby

Locations nearby