I went out one afternoon to the CN main line to see what I could see. It turned out to be a pretty high traffic period, and I saw seven trains in ninety minutes.
15:47 – First up was CN 2976 West. I was sitting near mile 16 of the CN Rivers subdivision and got the “wedgie” as they came rolling past.
I really liked this KegRiver car (KEGX 244027) on the train. I think KegRiver is a chemical company but I could be wrong.
It was a little quiet after that, so I ended up driving a bit west, and I eventually found an eastbound train.
16:12: CN 2305 was the lead unit on this general freight train as they passed the mile 17 boards.
After they passed, I saw a headlight to the east…
16:21: This was a westbound container train, led by CN 2914. I was back at mile 16 for the shot, nine minutes after the last train.
After that train passed, I chose to relocate a bit further west, ready for the next train, 14 minutes later.
16:35: I chose to shoot a “going away” photo, given the sun was in the west and getting closer to the horizon. Here they are passing the signals at mile 17.8.
It wasn’t long before the next train came along, and I photographed them at the same location.
16:45: I went down into the ditch to get a low angle on CN 8956 West as they passed the signals.
I’ve been meaning to photograph one of these Giant Tiger containers. They are quite striking.
It says “Tigre Géant” on the other side… reminiscent of the Canadian National / Canadien National double sided rail cars.
I started to make my way east toward Winnipeg after that train passed, but I encountered another eastbound train following the previous one.
16:58: Here we are back at mile 16 for the third time, with a westbound train led by some older power – and a shadow selfie.
CN 2179 is ex ATSF/BNSF 835, a “Dash 8” (C40-8W) and the unit behind it, CN 2445, is also a “Dash 8” (C40-8M), one of the few “cowl” units left on the CN roster… and with the “CN North America” logo to boot.
This general freight train had a lot of grain cars, including this cool BC Rail car BCOL 802372.
There were a fair number of newish CN grain hoppers mixed in with the older grain cars.
I’m glad the train was loud enough that you can’t hear me shout “POOOOL!” as this ex Saskatchewan Wheat Pool car went by.
This wasn’t the first time I’ve seen that car – I saw it earlier in 2021, on January 17.
I decided to head home at that point. I had to get home and make some supper, after all…
Wanting to prolong the magic, I elected to roll east along Wilkes Avenue paralleling the main line. I was rewarded for that choice with a seventh train.
17:14: I didn’t have any time to set up for this one. I saw the approaching train, pulled off the road and parked, and jumped out with my DSLR to take video as the train passed by. A “grab shot”, as it were.
So there you go – the first train was at 15:47 and the last at 17:14, squeezing 7 trains in a hair under 90 minutes. Busy times on the Rivers subdivision.
I elected to edit all of the trains into one video. Unfortunately the video file for one train (CN 8956 West) was corrupt, so I included stills for that train instead. I’ve never had that happen before… very strange.
I had my drone in the air for a few of the early trains, but I ran out of charged batteries before too long! I was hardly expecting seven trains…
Just One More Thing
I’m reading This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel. It’s a novel about an eclectic family with a transgender child. It’s funny and serious at the same time. I’m enjoying it.