Desperately Seeking Canola

I really enjoyed our family vacation in Banff. It’s such a beautiful location. However, Banff doesn’t have canola. This bright yellow crop has become a very popular plant for western farmers to grow alongside or in place of the traditional wheat fields. Canola was bred from rapeseed, but it is called canola (CANada, Oil, Low … Read more

A Golden Pair

I haven’t been railfanning a lot since we returned from Banff. I think it’s a combination of my renewed interest in bicycling and a general lack of interest in the trains around here after seeing some great mountain scenery. It’s not something to feel guilty about. Railfanning is a hobby and it shouldn’t feel like … Read more

And Now You Know – The Rest of the Trains

In between seeing the Rocky Mountaineer in the Banff area, photographing trains at Castle Mountain, and lurking at the Storm Mountain lookout, I saw a few other train related things while we were on our family vacation in Banff this summer. This post provides the “rest of the trains” – hat tip to the late … Read more

Storm Mountain Lookout

Most Canadian railfans have heard about Morant’s Curve. This iconic location was the scene of many Canadian Pacific Railway promotional photos, drawings and paintings and is named after Nicholas Morant, the CPR’s most famous photographer. Today the Curve is fairly overgrown, and much of the open sweeping vista that Morant captured so well is blocked … Read more

Action at Castle Mountain

I was at Castle Junction in Banff National Park on July 7, trackside by the CP Laggan subdivision. After the Rocky Mountaineer passed by, I remained there, hoping for more trains. I had my scanner with me, and I heard a train leaving the Eldon siding west of me. I decided to move to the … Read more

The Rocky Mountaineer Resumes

Like most things in the world, the Rocky Mountaineer ceased operating during the pandemic. I believe most of their clientele comes “from away” and with the travel restrictions in place to limit the spread of COVID-19, the passengers just weren’t coming. With British Columbia and Alberta coming out of lockdown, it was time to start … Read more

Prairie Dog Central, Movie Star, Part 2

In part 1 we followed the Prairie Dog Central’s train to downtown, where they were going to participate in the filming of The Porter, an upcoming CBC mini-series about Black railway porters. Picking up the story, they had just rolled past the station and had to back in from the north/east end. The head end … Read more

Prairie Dog Central, Movie Star, Part 1

The Prairie Dog Central Railway is a real gem, a great asset for the city of Winnipeg and surrounding areas. They entertain thousands of people every year on their trips between Inkster Junction and Grosse Isle, and occasionally they wander further (on GWWD tracks to Hadashville, for instance). In early June 2021, they roamed off their own rails and onto those of three of Winnipeg’s other railways.

May Surprises

Often when we go trackside, we get exactly what we expected – one or more trains, led by common locomotives and featuring the same ol’ same ol’ freight cars. Sometimes, though, we get something different. May 5 I recorded CP 7005 West passing the Viterra grain elevator near Rosser early on May 5th. The train … Read more

Strangers in Town

Here are a few “oddball” locomotives that have visited the Heart of the Continent, aka Winnipeg. Most of these are what we railfans call these “foreign power”, meaning locomotives that belong to railway X but running on railway Y’s rails.