Early April Railfanning

Having a meet at Lorette siding
Having a meet at Lorette siding

Here are some trains I saw during two days of railfanning in early April 2019. I was out on April 2 and April 6.

Keep an eye on the amount of snow on the ground! It’s surprising how much it varied by location and by day.

April 2

On April 2 I was out along the Sprague subdivision. You can see by the lead photo that I found a meet happening. This was at the Lorette siding, a popular spot for trains to meet as it is the last/first siding out of Winnipeg on this line.

The westbound train you see above was led by CN 2442, one CN’s last “cowl” units, the C40-8M or a “Dash 8”.

They rolled past the train in the siding. I went down to the east end to catch the train departing the siding. This one had CN 2840 on the point.

CN 2840 coming out of the siding at Lorette

After the train passed, I chased him down to Dufresne to record them going by the grain elevator there.

The video below incorporates both locations – Lorette and Dufresne.

Video of CN 2840 East

There was a CSX car on the elevator track in Dufresne. I imagine it was a “bad order” car set off there due to some mechanical defect. I don’t believe the elevator uses rail service any more.

CSXT 256557 in Dufresne, Manitoba
CSXT 256557 in Dufresne, Manitoba

Heading back toward Winnipeg, I found another train in the Lorette siding. I guess it rolled out of Winnipeg behind the other eastbound.

I captured it here with my Winnipeg Jets flag. At the time, Winnipeg was fighting with the St. Louis Blues in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Sadly, St. Louis beat us, but at least they went on to win the Cup, so I didn’t feel quite so bad. #SpoilerAlert


Enough sports, here’s the train! IC 2709 was leading CN 2608. There was another unit on the tail end, CN 8857.

IC 2709 in the Lorette siding
IC 2709 in the Lorette siding

Back in Winnipeg, there was yet another eastbound train queued up for departure. Shiny new CN 3861 and leased Citirail unit CREX 1515 were waiting for the westbound train to finish coming into the yard. The Sprague subdivision was busy!

CN 3861 and a Citirail unit
CN 3861 and a Citirail unit

April 6

Moving on to April 6, I was out in the early morning near Dugald, Manitoba, hoping to see some trains along the CN Redditt subdivision. The signal lights were lit, so I set up just east of Dugald to capture the train coming past the grain elevator.

In the photo below, you can see a black dot in the sky – that’s my drone.

An eastbound train at Dugald, Manitoba
An eastbound train at Dugald, Manitoba

Once the train passed, I jumped in my car and took off in pursuit. The morning sun was too nice to waste!

I passed the train around Anola and kept going. I thought about trying to duck into the town of Vivian to capture them going through the rail inspection portal there, but I wasn’t sure I would have enough time.

Instead, I went just east of Anola to a quiet crossing and put the drone up there to record them. I popped off a couple of shots as they approached.

I was wishing I had my telephoto lens on here, as the light was just perfect on the nose. Oh well, use what you have! I’m pleased with what I got.

Here’s the video of the train outside Dugald and outside Vivian.

Flying high outside Vivian and Dugald

After the train passed, I did go into Vivian to check out the photo angles there. Here’s the view from the crossing in town, with a telephoto lens. I think this has a lot of promise!

Hotbox detector and inspection portal at Vivian, Manitoba
Hotbox detector and inspection portal at Vivian, Manitoba

Two good days of railfanning!

Just One More Thing

I was a busy railfan in early April! Here are a few more outings:

2 thoughts on “Early April Railfanning”

    • Well, I don’t know about that, in my opinion the Jets had peaked earlier in the season and St. Louis was just hitting its stride when the playoffs started. But I’m not a hockey expert; I just cheer for the Jets.


Leave a Comment