The Maroon and the Military

Sunday, May 3rd was a very exciting time in the Winnipeg area for the railfans in the area. There were not one, not two, but three Canadian Pacific Railway “heritage” units in town during the day! Also, it was a lovely day and the three all came through in daylight. A railfan’s delight!

The three units were:

  1. Maroon and gold CP 7016 leading CP train 100 east through Winnipeg;
  2. Maroon and gold CP 7017 on the tail end of a grain train in the CP Winnipeg yard; and
  3. “Army Arid Regions” CP 7021 leading CP train 119 west through Winnipeg.

I went out to photograph CP 7016 and many other railfans went out as well. Many of them agreed to share their photos here so we can all enjoy the photos and see what talented photographers we have in the area.

CP 7016

CP 7016 at Oak Lake, Manitoba - Tyler Kowalski
CP 7016 at Oak Lake, Manitoba – Tyler Kowalski

The fun started with maroon and gold CP 7016 leading hotshot container train CP 100 east across our fine province. Tyler Kowalski was on the road recording this train and CP 7021 during the day. He started his railfanning near Oak Lake, in the western half of the province, catching 7016 with some soft morning light on the nose.

Farther east, Jim Burnside was set up near Poplar Point (between Portage la Prairie and Marquette) to record CP 100 rolling past a few hours later.

CP 100 near Poplar Point, MB – Jim Burnside

A few minutes after that, Brad Hein caught CP 7016 leading train CP 100 at Marquette as it rolled toward Winnipeg. The CP Carberry subdivision is a racetrack between Marquette and Winnipeg and it is difficult to overtake any intermodal trains along there. The best you can do is observe the speed limit and be patient, and you should catch up again after Rosser, 15 miles or so later.

CP 7016 at Marquette, MB – Brad Hein

Meanwhile… I arrived at the CP main line and saw nothing going on. I didn’t really know where CP 100 was, but I was pretty sure that it hadn’t passed yet. I decided to head west toward Marquette to intercept the train. I intended to set up some video and put my drone in the air to record the train.

A few minutes later, I was driving 50 km/hr through Rosser when I spotted container cars heading west on the CP line. I may have said a few choice words. I executed a U-turn and set off in pursuit. Sure enough, there was a maroon and gold unit leading the train!

CP 7016 between Rosser and Makwa - Steve Boyko
CP 7016 between Rosser and Makwa – Steve Boyko

As I drove as fast as I legally could toward the east, I passed a vehicle parked on the side of the road. I didn’t recognize him but he was clearly a railfan. I gave him a couple of toots on the horn and carried on past the Viterra grain elevator. I would have liked to photograph there but I didn’t think I would have time to set up the video equipment before the train arrived.

The railfan was Brad Hein and this is his photo from that location:

CP 7016 at Rosser grain elevator - Brad Hein
CP 7016 at Rosser grain elevator – Brad Hein

I ended up at mile 8.1 and pulled off the road. I ran around, putting equipment down and readying for the shot. Seconds later, CP 7016 came rolling through.

CP 7016 passing the mile 8.1 signals
CP 7016 passing the mile 8.1 signals – Steve Boyko

If you look way in the distance on the left, you’ll see the grain elevator that Brad included in his shot.

That was basically it for me – I was busy for the rest of the day, but many other people were out for the plethora of CP heritage units.

Brad stopped and captured me photographing CP 8610, the trailing unit. That’s the nose of my car on the far right. We had a good chat before I headed home.

CP 8610 and me - Brad Hein
CP 8610 and me – Brad Hein

Here’s my video:

CP 7016 at mile 8.1 – Steve Boyko

CP 100 paused briefly in the Winnipeg yard for a crew change, and maybe a sip of fuel, before continuing east with its containers full of… well, who knows?

Mark Perry and Jack Hykaway both captured the train on their way out. I believe this is near Lagimodiere Boulevard in Winnipeg.

CP 7016 under Lagimodiere Boulevard - Jack Hykaway
CP 7016 under Lagimodiere Boulevard – Jack Hykaway
CP 7016 leaving Winnipeg - Mark Perry
CP 7016 leaving Winnipeg – Mark Perry

CP 7017

CP 7017 in the Winnipeg yard - Tyler Kowalski
CP 7017 in the Winnipeg yard – Tyler Kowalski

Several railfans found CP 7017 sitting in the Canadian Pacific yard in downtown Winnipeg at the tail end of a grain train. Tyler’s photo shows it’s not a leader, because the sun shade is fully down over the windows. I like Jack’s photo below because it gives context to where 7017 was. I’ve photographed pretty much exactly the same angle!

CP 7017 in the Winnipeg yard - Jack Hykaway
CP 7017 in the Winnipeg yard – Jack Hykaway

The unit was still sitting in Winnipeg a day later. It’s possible the grain train wasn’t required, or there was an issue with 7017, although I think if it had a problem it would be moved to the shop for attention.

The real star of the day was military unit CP 7021.

CP 7021

CP 7021 down low - Jack Hykaway
CP 7021 down low – Jack Hykaway

Everyone wanted to see the military unit, CP 7021. This locomotive is decorated for “arid regions”, which I guess is code for Iraq and Afghanistan.

Jack Hykaway’s remote camera recorded it coming into Winnipeg. I’m not sure of the exact location – hard to tell from this photo – but I think it was close to Jim’s photo below.

CP 7021 near Manson - Jim Burnside
CP 7021 near Manson – Jim Burnside

Jim Burnside photographed it at Manson coming into Winnipeg. Manson is where VIA used to change between CP and CN, back when VIA Rail actually ran on both CN and CP tracks.

The train paused briefly in the CP yard in downtown Winnipeg, then hurried westward. The railfans were ready and the sunset light was great!

Mark Perry caught it leaving CP Makwa by the Viterra grain elevator – the same one that Brad Hein shot the eastbound at.

CP 7021 passing the Viterra grain elevator near Rosser - Mark Perry
CP 7021 passing the Viterra grain elevator near Rosser – Mark Perry

Brad was farther west, photographing and recording the train passing the west end of the Marquette siding.

CP 7021 at Marquette West - Brad Hein
CP 7021 at Marquette West – Brad Hein
CP 7021 at Marquette – Brad Hein

Tyler Kowalski kept roaming the roads late in the day, heading west and leapfrogging the train as it rolled through prairie towns and cities. He got a nice overhead shot in Portage la Prairie from the Tupper Street overpass. The ex CP station is just in frame on the right side.

CP 7021 in Portage la Prairie, MB - Tyler Kowalski
CP 7021 in Portage la Prairie, MB – Tyler Kowalski

Shadows loom as last light paints CP 7021 at an S curve near Sidney, Manitoba, almost 40 miles west of Portage la Prairie.

CP 7021 at Sidney, Manitoba - Tyler Kowalski
CP 7021 at Sidney, Manitoba – Tyler Kowalski

Last shot of the night belongs to Kaitlyn Amanda McMurdo – apologies for misspelling your first name in the copyright notice below – who has started contributing to our little railfan group on Facebook. Welcome!

CP 7021 through Douglas, MB - Kaithlyn Amanda McMurdo
CP 7021 through Douglas, MB – Kaithlyn Amanda McMurdo

That was the end of the CP heritage trio for that day. Thanks to everyone for allowing me to post their great photos.

Just One More Thing

16 thoughts on “The Maroon and the Military”

  1. Fantastic! I love seeing everyone’s point of view of this eventful day, and there’s some great coverage by everybody trackside!

    The 7017 is STILL in Winnipeg. It was at Weston this afternoon…

    Reply
    • Hi Jack, thanks for sharing your photos! I went looking for 7017 last night and found 7013 instead, so that’s still a win in my books.

      Reply
  2. Great post Steve! Too busy for me this time of the year to be looking for trains, so I’m glad to see people sharing their footage.

    Reply
    • Hi Sheldon, no doubt this is a busy time! I’ve seen lots of farmers out preparing the fields now that they have dried up some. Let’s hope for a good year.

      Reply
  3. Steve (and team) – Great photos! I wonder if the crew of CP 7016 felt like movie stars, what with all the paparazzi around.

    Question about your comment on CP Manson – Can you refer me to more information on that? I don’t recall VIA running on CP east of Winnipeg, and on today’s route maps, I don’t see any CN tracks at Manson to interchange with – perhaps an extension of the Pine Junction? The VIA material I collected in the 70’s and 80’s is buried in a box in my attic, so I thought it would be easier to ask you 🙂 Thanks!

    Reply
    • Hi Jeff, thanks for your comment! When intercontinental passenger trains were running on both CN and CP, after CP closed its own station, the (ex CP) “Canadian” stopped at the (CN) Union station downtown. Westbounds would leave CP at Manson onto the CN Pine Falls subdivision to Beach Junction, where they would take the CN Redditt subdivision to Union Station. From there they would run over CN to Portage la Prairie, where they would rejoin CP tracks for the run west to Vancouver.

      That’s how I believe it went, anyway! I welcome any corrections.

      Reply
      • Thanks Steve! I completely forgot that VIA’s original Canadian was a continuation of CP’s. East of Winnipeg it went through Kenora down to Thunder Bay and then to Toronto. I rode the Canadian in the 80’s west of Winnipeg several times (to Calgary and Vancouver) and remember the switch back to CP on the west end of the Portage La Prairie yard, so I’m sure you are correct on both counts.

        Reply
  4. Great shots Steve; I love the military units, will try to catch the D-Day one this summer
    (7024 ?) Best shots are when we can tell where the train is, like your shot beside the cold storage. I actually know where that is.

    BTW, Thanks loads for putting me in touch with B.Brillinger, I bought and am enjoying the Ontario Northland book. Feels like I have new friends in Manitoba !!

    Steve.

    Reply
    • Hi Steve, I’m glad you liked the photos! We have some talent here in Manitoba. 🙂 I’d like to catch the D-Day unit as well. I think it’s 6644, numbered for June 6, 1944.

      I’m glad you are enjoying the book! We’re pretty friendly here in “the middle”.

      Reply

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