Friday, December 23, 2011
The Northern Spirit cars that have been stored at the Winnipeg Maintenance Centre have been sold "to Mexico" and are being prepared for movement. They are up beside the WMC all coupled together. I'm told they are going by CN but I do not know when.
Also, baggage-coach car VIA 5649 was at the WMC on Wednesday. VIA 5649 is an old ex-CN car that is still painted in blue and yellow. It and two other blue and yellow cars are used on VIA trains 290/291 between The Pas, MB and Pukatawagan, MB on the Keewatin Railway. I assume it was brought to Winnipeg for servicing by VIA 692 and will return soon on VIA 693.
VIA 290/291 are odd ducks. They are listed on VIA's site but you can't book them there. You have to contact the Keewatin Railway Company by phone.
VIA 5648 and 5649 are listed on VIA's site. They were built in 1954 by the Canadian Car and Foundry company. The third car used on the The Pas-Pukatawagan line is VIA 3248, a cafe-coach car also built in 1954. Clayton Chaloner has a nice photo of VIA 3248 on the tail end of VIA 692.