VIA 693I decided to head up to the CN Rivers subdivision to try to catch the Winnipeg-Churchill train departing. This is VIA 693, formerly known as the "Hudson Bay". At times it has had a Park car on the rear but I think they haven't had one for a while.
I got to the track and headed east along Wilkes Avenue. As I passed Carman Junction I saw headlights to the east, which I assumed was VIA. I noticed a CN crew working on the signals at the junction so I parked just west of them on the shoulder. Sure enough, it was VIA 693 approaching at a slow speed.
|VIA 6434 leading train 693 out of Winnipeg|
|CHATEAU MONTCALM on VIA 693 leaving Winnipeg|
CN 8015 EastAfter that, I headed to just east of Diamond and parked. I got my laptop out and banged away on the keyboard, while glancing up occasionally to look for trains. After about half an hour, I spotted a train in the distance, rounding the corner at mile 16. As they passed Diamond, I got out the "big gun" (my 70-200mm lens) and took some shots of the approaching train.
|CN 8015 across the prairie|
|CN 8015 and a cloud of birds|
The video is at the end of this post.
CN 5641 WestAbout half an hour later, the next train came rolling along.
|CN 5641 near Diamond outside Winnipeg|
The poor birds were disturbed again...
|CN 5641 and the birds|
I decided that was enough, and headed toward home. However...
CP 2240 EastAs I rounded the Perimeter Highway, I thought I spotted a headlight on the CP La Riviere subdivision to the south. I exited and drove toward it a bit, and sure enough, it was a train.
CP 2240 and 3016 were heading north / railway east, coming back from working the entire subdivision. They had a set of CP flatcars on the tail end, empty after depositing their loads of pipe near Morden.
|CP 2240 leading the La Riviere wayfreight|
Again I recorded video with my iPhone.
I managed to get some of that sticky Manitoba mud on my shoes. That stuff is a mix of mud and clay and is really hard to get off. Often you end up with an inch or two of it layered to the bottom of your shoes.
That was it for train watching for a few hours... until...
CN 8949 EastI took my son to his choir practice in the late afternoon, then headed out toward Transcona. I saw a train leaving Symington Yard through Beach Junction, heading east, so I carried on out toward Dugald to get ahead of them. I knew they would have to slow down through the yard so I was confident I could beat them.
In fact I got to a rural crossing on the way to Dugald and had enough time to set up my Canon S3 as a video camera. I then shot the approaching train with my camera, then dropped that and took video with my iPhone and with the S3 as well. This was my first time recording video with two devices at once, and I've spliced them together in the video at the end of the post.
Here's CN 8949 approaching with 8925 assisting. It's starting to get green here in Manitoba!
|CN 8949 with a dark nose|
CN 730However, CN wasn't done with me yet. I saw another eastbound train so I pulled off to the shoulder to photograph it. The long string of Canpotex cars with the 2+1+1 DPU arrangement made it pretty obvious it was CN 730, destined for Saint John, New Brunswick and the potash dock there.
CN 3018 and CN 2959 were the head end power.
A little side pan shot of CN 3018...
|CN 3018 from the side|
|CN 3112 in the middle of a potash train|
|CN 2942 on the rear of a Canpotex potash train|
The same train was through Drummondville, Quebec at 09:09 Eastern on Friday, and out of Joffre, Quebec at 17:30. It arrived in Saint John, NB Saturday morning around 10:30 AM.
The VideoSo I've been talking up this video all through the post. Here it is, with CN 8015 East, CP 2240 East and CN 8949 East.
I did some editing to cut out a lot of the "watching train cars go by" monotony. I understand some people like to see the whole train, but I don't.. and the CP one in particular was going so slowly that it would really draaaaag the video out. I hope you like the editing - please let me know what you think!