CN’s Rail Inspection Portals

In May 2018, CN awarded a contract to Duos Technologies to provide four Rail Inspection Portals (rip®) around Winnipeg, Manitoba to perform automated inspection of passing trains. These portals incorporate high speed cameras and thermal imaging to inspect rail cars at speeds up to 70 MPH (110 km/hr). These portals are now in operation, and … Read more

Generosity and Thievery

I’ve always thought that photos are for sharing. I’ve never seen the point of taking a photo, then keeping the negative (or digital file) to yourself and never showing it to others. If that’s your thing, great. It’s everyone’s choice, but my choice is to share. Sometimes, though, sharing can backfire. Here are a few … Read more

Zoom Is A Railfan’s Best Friend

I think one of the best tools for a railfan photographer is a zoom lens. With a zoom lens (aka a telephoto lens), you can get a vastly different perspective than you can with a wide angle lens. The “reach” of a zoom means you can isolate the subject from a cluttered background, or photograph … Read more

New Cars for the Rocky Mountaineer

The Rocky Mountaineer is getting some “new” cars. On January 21, 2019 I spotted this pair of cars in Symington Yard in Winnipeg, Manitoba. I recognized these cars as belonging to the Charlevoix tourist train operation in Quebec. The “RMRX” reporting marks on these two cars (RMRX 201 and 202) told me that these now … Read more

CN’s New Power

Over the past few years, CN’s traffic has grown significantly, which has led to a need for more trains to move this traffic. This means more locomotives and more crews. CN has been hiring and training new conductors all across Canada and the US, and they’ve been buying new locomotives and leasing locomotives as well. … Read more

Top 12 of 2018

I’ve picked one photo from each month in 2018 as my “best”. I know it’s subjective. Here we go. January’s photo was taken on the 14th on a very snowy day – it was a terrible day for driving but a good day for railfanning! February’s photo is in Ghent in Belgium. I was there … Read more

VIA Rail Returns to Churchill

VIA Rail has resumed passenger service to Churchill, Manitoba. Service was interrupted in late May 2017 when portions of the rail line were washed out. Since the rail line was sold, repairs proceeded rapidly and now service is back to the northern Manitoba town. This article was originally published on and is not to be … Read more

New Book: Passing a Half Century

I’ve completed my second book, “Passing a Half Century”! This details the trip my wife and I took through Alberta and British Columbia to celebrate turning 50. Buy paperback on Amazon.CA This book is a compilation of a blog post series that I wrote, plus reviews of the three railway museums I visited, plus additional … Read more

A Train Reaches Churchill

After more than a year, a train has reached Churchill, Manitoba. Three locomotives, a caboose and a flatcar arrived at the northern town just before 6:45 PM on October 31. This was the first train to visit the town since the rail line between Gillam and Churchill was washed out in late May 2017. Churchill … Read more