After the two elevators of McConnell, I was abruptly returned to the present with the modern grain elevator at Oakner.
|Three tracks serve the Oakner elevator|
Apparently Oakner and other Cargill facilities recently had PLC upgrades. A PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) is a kind of industrial computer that is used to monitor and control machinery. This is in the line of work that I do so I was interested to find this blurb from Delco Automation.
Beyond grain storage, the Oakner facility has a number of other outbuildings including fertilizer storage.
|The extended Cargill facility in Oakner, MB|
There is not much of the town of Oakner remaining, just a few nearby buildings. I carried on.
Since the Rivers subdivision doesn't have a road running alongside it in the western part of the province, jumping from elevator to elevator meant driving L patterns across the landscape.
|No direct routes..|
|Selfie at Norman|
This is a former UGG grain elevator now operated by Canada Malting Ltd. It looks like a close relative of another Canada Malting elevator in Mariapolis. At least Norman has rail service from CN.
This is one of the newest wooden grain elevators in Manitoba. It was built in 1983 and started operating in 1984.
I parked nearby and took a few photos. As I was walking around, I heard a distant train horn. Finally - a train!
I set up the tripod with my iPhone on it, and stood by to snap pictures. It turned out to be a westbound CN intermodal train led by CN 8961 and 2230.
|My Civic was photobombing|
I think there was someone working on this Saturday as there was a pickup truck at the elevator and I could hear some machinery working.
This elevator has a capacity of 5,500 tonnes and has a single track with 23 car spots for loading and storage. Canada Malting's site has a page on it.
|The siding at Norman|
After Norman, it was time for the namesake of the CN subdivision.
In the photo below you can see the grain elevator with the train station visible at far right.
|The town of Rivers, Manitoba|
It appears that one was built in 1951 by National Grain and one was built in 1957 by UGG.
I spotted a lonely CN 8918 sitting near the west end of the town. I'm not sure why it was there but it was nicely placed for a roster photo.
I checked out the train station in Rivers. It looks like it is owned by VIA but appearances are deceiving.
|The train station in Rivers, Manitoba|
This is the actual VIA train
|Luxury accommodations in Rivers!|
The CN bunkhouse is right beside the station.
|CN bunkhouse, Rivers|
|CN 73664 and CN 79528 in Rivers, Manitoba|
A CN engineer recognized me when I poked my head into the restaurant and messaged me on Facebook, so I went back to say hello and finally meet him in person. Hi Christopher!
I would be back on the Rivers subdivision one more time this day when I visited Quadra. The other grain elevators in Manitoba on or beside the CN Rivers subdivision are at Elie, Bloom, Gregg, Harte, Justice and Knox and I had visited all of those before.
That was it for Rivers... it was time to leave active tracks again and head for nearby Bradwardine and beyond.