Sunday, July 16, 2006

Last VIA detour

I got a call from Bill Linley this morning at about 06:45 to say that VIA 14 (the Ocean) had passed Longley, NB at 06:35. We talked a bit about whether I should go to McGivney, Cantor (Hardwood Ridge), or Chipman. We figured McGivney had been covered very well so I elected to go to Chipman.

When I passed through Hardwood Ridge I looked at the west-facing signals and they showed dark-over-red. I arrived in Chipman at about 08:05 to find red-over-red signals facing east and the westward signals unlit. CN 6025 was shut down on one leg of the wye with two empty bulkhead flatcars coupled on. There was noone around.
CN 6025 in Chipman, New Brunswick
I set up on the highway bridge beside the railway bridge to wait. Armed with bug spray, sunscreen and scanner, I was all set! The only question was.. when would VIA show up?

I waited.. and waited.. and waited. There was no discussion on the scanner so I had no clues about when the Ocean would come. Meanwhile, my bladder was demanding attention but I dared not leave my post for fear the train would come while I was attending to Nature. I talked with Bill on the cellphone a couple of times and he assured me there was no way the train could have reached Chipman before me. I called VIA and they told me it would be on time into Moncton.

Finally the scanner crackled to life at 09:50: "Clear signal". I sprinted to the video camera to the sound of a horn blowing for the highway 10 crossing. Then I heard "Clear signal" again as the engineer called out the bridge signal, and VIA 14 rolled into view.
VIA 14 detouring through Chipman, NB
VIA 14 and Revelstoke Park on the bridge at Chipman, NB
As you can see the light was not great. I had to work around the wires between me and the railway bridge too. I probably wouldn't choose this location again.

VIA 14 appears to have had 6425 on the head end and Revelstoke Park was bringing up the marker(light)s.

After that I drove around a bit, trying to figure out if any other trains were coming soon. A friendly CN foreman called the RTC and determined that the next train would be 149, called out of Moncton at 11:30. Since I didn't want to wait two hours, I went home.

Here's the video.

I understand the detour is over and VIA will be using the NBEC route again. I'm glad I caught one train on the Napadogan sub.

Other Detours

No comments: