Saturday, February 13, 2010
VIA 2 in Daylight
One of the few train-watching problems in Winnipeg is that the eastbound Canadian is almost always in darkness. It is scheduled to arrive at 20:30, meaning that only in the longest days of June will it arrive in daylight. In fact, I haven't seen VIA 2 in daylight in Winnipeg since 2004.
On Friday (Feb 12) I was getting an early lunch at 11:15, and shooting CN 199, when I heard that VIA 2 was passing through Portage la Prairie. It was late due to Thursday morning's derailment near the MB-SK border. I knew that it would take the Canadian about an hour to get from Portage to Winnipeg, so I intended to catch them at 12:15ish. I was a bit late leaving and I arrived at CN Waverley at 12:35 to see the Canadian changing from the north to the south track just west of Waverley Street. Just in time!
A maintenance-of-way (MOW) crew gave the Canadian an inspection as it went by, as per Canadian Rail Operating Rules rule 110.
"When duties and terrain permit, at least two crew members of a standing train or transfer and other employees at wayside must position themselves on the ground on both sides of the track to inspect the condition of equipment in passing trains and transfers. When performing a train or transfer inspection, the locomotive engineer will inspect the near side. When a group of wayside employees is present, at least two employees must perform the inspection."
VIA 2's consist was: engines 6441 and 6412; deadhead sleeper 8327 (FRASER MANOR); baggage 8609; coach 8119; Skyline 8512; diner 8409 FAIRHOLME; sleepers 8308 BLISS MANOR, 8314 CAMERON MANOR, 8328 GRANT MANOR, and 8215 CHATEAU LEMOYNE; and 8718 YOHO PARK.
Oh, I mentioned I saw CN train 199... it had Dash-9 CN 2666 leading and sister CN 2597 in second position. I saw CN 2666 a few times in and near Saint John in early 2006 - it was the lead unit on CN 305 on January 21.