Louis Riel Day Railfanning

Back on February 18, 2019, I was sitting at home, wondering what to do. It was Louis Riel Day, a holiday here in Manitoba, which always amuses me. As someone who was schooled primarily in eastern Canada, I was taught that Louis Riel was a traitor to Canada who was justifiably hung for his crimes. … Read more

Book Review: Trackside Newfoundland

Bill Linley has released another book in his “Trackside” series. This one is “Trackside Newfoundland“, featuring his photos from several trips to the Rock. The book is published by Morning Sun Books and is up to their usual quality standards, which is to say excellent. Bill visited Newfoundland several times, starting with an epic railfan … Read more

100 Years of CN

On June 6, 1919, 100 years ago, the Canadian National Railways was incorporated. 100 years later, CN, as it is now known, continues to move trains across the country. CN is shipping a specially decorated and equipped set of containers across the continent to celebrate this – see their web site for details. Matt Landry … Read more

Two If By Air

I’ve had my drone for a few months now and I can say that I am starting to get the hang of it. I’m still no expert but I have used it enough that I have confidence that I will get a decent video out of it. I was out for my regular late Tuesday … Read more

A Good Time, Not A Long Time

I went out for a little late evening / sunset photography on April 20th, hoping to get a chance to fly my drone and get some overhead shots. It didn’t work out exactly as I hoped, but I ended up being pretty satisfied with the photos I did get. As I approached the south / … Read more

Busy Times on the Sprague Sub

It was February 3, 2019 and I was out railfanning on the last few miles of the CN Sprague subdivision, around the Lorette siding at mile 138.2. In the hour or so that I was out there, I saw three trains and a meet. I encountered CN 3054 West as I was driving out from … Read more

Before the Dawn

I’m what you would call a morning person. I usually get up at 6 AM – at least on weekdays – and go for a walk, then have breakfast and shower. By 7:30 I’m ready to roll. On weekends, I might sleep in until 8:30 or so but often I eschew that for railfanning. This … Read more

A Comedy of Errors

I went out railfanning early in the morning of March 23, full of hope for a good morning of photographing trains and flying my drone. You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men often going awry… or, to more accurately quote the Robert Burns poem, “The best laid schemes … Read more

VIA’s Canadian – How Many Locomotives?

I posted a photo of a VIA Rail “Canadian” train to Instagram recently that featured the three locomotives on the head end. It sparked a discussion about the rarity of seeing more than two locomotives on the “Canadian”, even though its train length can often exceed 20 cars in the summer. I dug my sightings … Read more

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