Did you ever have a day or a train chase where you felt like you were just a few seconds behind everyone else? That was yesterday for me. I guess that makes up for my lucky catch of a CN local yesterday.
January 30 started with a quick visit to the NBEC yard in Bathurst. NBEC 1818 was the yard power, and the crew was walking to their unit at about 07:50 in the bitter cold.
I wasn't really trying to catch VIA 14 but I hoped I would get them at Belledune when they stopped to reline the Irvco switch. I heard them on the scanner but I only saw the tail end of the train in the distance. Miss #1.
Ore train 587 was in Belledune but I didn't see it. I assume NBEC 1813 and SFEX 3000 were still the power for that train.
On my way back south, I heard someone calling the RTC as I drove over the tracks on highway 11 but I didn't hear who it was.
As I approached Miramichi I heard train 403 getting its TOP from the RTC at 14:54. Given that I was just by Wal-Mart at that point, I didn't think I would be able to get trackside before they left. I was right. (the TOP was for 6905 West with 8 loads (didn't hear the # of empties), 2693 tons and 2584 feet).
Just as I saw the tracks by the Northumberland Dairy facility, 403 was blowing for the crossings. I saw two SD40 and two C424 units in the distance as they headed north. I estimate they had about 30 cars, 17 of those being the empty Ultramar tank cars on the tail end. Miss #2.
CFMG 6910 was at rest in the yard, waiting to become train 402 later in the day. NBEC 1866 and NBEC 1856 were the power on local 578, which was idling in front of the crew shack. I contented myself with some roster shots in the bright sunlight before heading south.
I like the moon over the unit.
As I approached McGivney I saw the east-facing signals were green over red, but I didn't have time to sit and wait for a train to show. Experience has told me it could be half an hour at least before something shows. Miss #3.
On the way south I stopped and took a few photos of the old railway bridge at Renous. I've been meaning to do this for some time.
Not a great day for watching trains, but what can you do?