Saturday, July 10, 2010

Chasing on the Sprague Subdivision

Back on July 3, I was driving east along the south Perimeter Highway outside Winnipeg. The kids and I were going to Spare Time Hobbies, via Symington Yard of course. As we came up to the intersection to get onto Fermor, we saw a trailing engine roll southward across the Floodway. What the heck, I decided, let's chase it!

We exited onto the Trans-Canada and gave chase. The train wasn't going especially fast, but we were hampered by the construction on the highway, making it single-lane each way at 80 km/hr with no passing. The traffic was heavy but steady so we slowly gained ground.

There was a westbound train stopped in the siding at Lorette (mile 138.2). We hoped we would be able to get it on the way back!

My oldest son had my Canon T1i and was blasting away as we overtook the train. Here's his shot of ex-BC Rail BCOL 4652, the second unit on the train.
BCOL 4652. Photo by Nick Boyko
Not bad for shooting from a moving vehicle, through a window, in the rain, eh?

Once we finally got ahead of the train around mile 130, I pulled over onto the shoulder and shot it as it passed us. CN 8834 and the aforementioned BCOL 4652 were on the head end.
CN 8834 south of Winnipeg
As you can see in the background, the canola is in bloom now.

CN 2694 brought up the markers at the end of the train.
CN 2694 trails out of Winnipeg

After it passed, we did a quick U-turn and headed back to try to catch the eastbound before it got into Symington Yard. We caught up with it by Tinkertown around mile 145 just before the end of the Sprague subdivision. I pulled into Symington Road by Grand Prix Amusements and shot them as they rolled slowly by.

The light wasn't good for the lead unit CN 5740 but it was for the trailing unit, rare SD60 CN 5522.
CN 5522 in Winnipeg
It felt great to actually chase a train again! :)

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