Author Archives: adminrail

Something New Around Here.

Something New Around Here.

One of the things that can drive you crazy out this way is that every day is pretty much the same as the next. Days turn into weeks and the weeks turn into months. Changes happen over time.  Seasons for example.  Those changes you notice. I’m not whining about that.  There’s a curse that goes,… Continue reading »

Operation: 1st Night

After 10+ years of planning and building it has finally come to this. It’s ‘Operations Night’ on the Winter Valley. The much feared and often put off meet is upon us and friends are invited over for the upcoming Wednesday evening. They’ll be given a quick ‘show and tell’ about the layout, the engines, the… Continue reading »

A Big City Never Sleeps

A Big City Never Sleeps Well, for some people around here this is the ‘big city’. Most of the folks grew up on the farm or were closely associated to the farm and country life in general but good roads, school, hospital and business amalgamation and new oil and gas workers from ‘away’ have meant… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon Part 1 – Then and Now – 1

Late last summer I was able to be on the road for a few days. While there’s nothing left of railroading in the Okanagan there are main line rails just 2 or three hours out. One place captured my interest right away. There were plenty of trains, about 30 a day, amazing scenery, easy access… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon Part 1 – Then and Now – 2

Seen today from the same location you can see two tracks of very much heavier rail.   The ‘down hill’ track on the right is, not unsurprisingly, well warn. Evidence of the tremendous braking action needed to maintain control of today’s long, heavy trains as they make their way into Revelstoke 750 feet below. The tool… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon Part 1 – Then and Now – 3

I’ve made a point of mentioning the most western leg of the Y in what’s left of the working yard at Albert Canyon. Standing here, looking at the crest of the hill, you can just make out the sides of the plate girder bridges over the creek. There are three. One noticeable older than the… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon Part 1 – Then and Now – 4

Of course there is always another side to a Y and that is here as well. The narrow road in the center of the photo heads off into the homesteader property but it hasn’t quite covered the evidence of the ties laid down a hundred years ago. Barely visible, from the lower left to the… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon part 3 – At the Back Door – 1

East, by railroad standards, of the former Albert Canyon station, the tracks enter the middle portion of a broad S curve and head on back to the edge of the Illecillewaet River and the Trans Canada Highway. The “back door” of my cabin was less that 30 meters from the tracks but protected by an… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon part 3 – At the Back Door – 2

The same train as it passed my perfect location. No, they don’t all look the same these days as some suggest. Each is interesting and different in it’s own way. This one is moving empties, as suggested by the horsepower on the front end and its direction of travel, over the top into Golden where… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon part 3 – At the Back Door – 3

The coal was there all right and so was the potash and the grain and the oil but the ‘really big show’ in the canyon was the show put on by the seemingly endless trains of containers. Stack trains. Wal-Mart Trains. Don’t we build anything any more trains. East and west. Day and night.   It’s… Continue reading »

Albert Canyon part 3 – At the Back Door – 4

On tracks recently inhabited by a huge bear another stack train brakes down hill into Albert Canyon.   The sound from these is completely different. Best described as a single note high pitch scream backed up by a mechanical chorus and a Stanley Steamer. Anyway, there’s no mistaking what it is and it flies by my… Continue reading »

Somewhere near Brighton.

Somewhere near Brighton. I may have mentioned this before but there is a stretch of double track between Trenton Ontario and Brighton that cries out to train watchers. Did me anyway. CPRail and CN side by side in relatively open country broken up by highway overpasses and railway bridges. Just wish I were in the… Continue reading »

Somewhere near Brighton. – 2

Crossing the Lachine Canal in down town Montreal. This is a favourate spot for train watching because Place Bonaventure and the VIA/CN Central Station are just around the bend and only 2 KM up the track. But I like this photo because my favourate locomotives are working away moving people in and out of the… Continue reading »

Left Behind

Now you see back in the day when shareholders were NOT the only reason railroads existed and when railroads still had a modicum of “class’ efforts were made to offer both a high level of service AND project a modern progressive image – at some cost. In what became the final days of trans-Canada passenger… Continue reading »

Left Behind 2

The tracks that served a unique and beautiful passenger station are long gone as are the engine facilities and the spider web of service to packinghouses, warehouses and mills.  Only recently the yards were reduced even further and rebuilt to service the last sawmill in town, a rip track/scrap yard and SunRype Products. It continues… Continue reading »

Left Behind (3)

While I wondered around this car I wondered just how many of these 8 hatch refrigerator cars were preserved in Canada.  They were unique in North America, designed to move meet, vegetables and fruit at controlled temperatures over much longer distances than those required in the United States.  This does not suggest that the run… Continue reading »

Left Behind (4)

Building an “end of the line” scene or better perhaps, a scene where the track has been torn up, there are many little ways that you can make it an interesting, less modeled, effect. My friends would have a fit if they say a long, flat space on the benchwork where there was no track, even… Continue reading »

Those Beautiful Streamliners

Those Beautiful Streamliners I think I’ll speak to my MP. See if he’ll put forward a privet members bill making it mandatory for all diesel locomotives in Canada to look like these ones. It may not go far but….. You don’t see a lot of them any more and none at all around these parts…. Continue reading »

Those Beautiful Streamliners (2)

Speaking of the 70’s. We were at CFS Lowther in 1977. It no longer exists of course, apart from a patch of tall grass and Black Flies. but I often went down to the ATC center in North Bay and to visit friends in “the hole.” Most days, even on cold and rainy ones, I… Continue reading »

Those Beautiful Streamliners (3)

Now you see back in the day when shareholders were NOT the only reason railroads existed and when railroads still had a modicum of “class’ efforts were made to offer both a high level of service AND project a modern progressive image – at some cost. In what became the final days of trans-Canada passenger… Continue reading »

Those Beautiful Streamliners (4)

On a sunny, late summers day in 1981 we took the gang on a trip up to Saskatoon and back.  We drove, dogs and all, but at least a few people took the train.  Riding in single car, air-conditioned style behind a full baggage and 1750 horses. The Regina – Saskatoon line would be high… Continue reading »

Wandering through Regina.

Back in the late 70’s and up to at least 1983 you could walk around the small CN yard in western Regina pretty much unimpeded.  Of course needles paranoia took hold later on, costing us a trillion dollars, and solving nothing.  So this is back to that time and place again to pay small homage… Continue reading »

Wandering Through Regina – 2

Resplendent in the red cab scheme GMD1 1009 sits waiting for work at the Regina yard.  In the previous photo, old 1045 ran long end forward but I think these were rebuilt for short end running.  Thus the red nose as per the rest of the fleet although my pictures from Moose Jaw at http://wvrr.ca/prototype/photo_28.htm… Continue reading »

Wandering Through Regina – 3

Now see?  This is what they really look like. Maybe the wear and tear on the long hood is a bit over done.  You shouldn’t actually have the primer showing through but I do like the treatment applied to the trucks.  All that great detail shouldn’t be covered over and hidden with a coat of… Continue reading »

Wandering Through Regina – 4

And away from Regina for the last photo.  A trip to Melville is well worth the drive from anywhere in SK or even western MB.  There are/were lots of local switchers and big road engines on hand and plenty of action coming and going.  On the day I was there the west bound Canadian showed… Continue reading »

One hour at Cisco

A short trip to the Cisco Bridges in BC’s Fraser Canyon For those unfamiliar, the Cisco Bridges (Canadian Pacific’s lower truss and the Canadian National’s upper steel arch) span the Fraser River in a rocky narrowing of the canyon approximately 12 Km south of Lytton BC on the Trans Canada Highway and just a few… Continue reading »

One hour at Cisco – 2

Oh sorry.  These pages are supposed to be dedicated to seeing the prototype and modelling the prototype so I’ll try to put my Gee-Whiz aside for now, stand back, and take a look at what is really there to model.  Something might be easy to simulate in miniature. Well, Canadian Pacific’s contribution to the scene… Continue reading »

One hour at Cisco – 3

I wasn’t going to suggest models for the CN’s contribution to the show at Cisco but if cost is no object, you might try http://micro-scale.com/product/ho-scale-400-cantilever-canyon-bridge.  I’m paying someone at Mainline Bridges in AZ to build one for my large-scale layout and it will cost ½ of that.   But then, mine won’t be over 50 feet… Continue reading »

Story time.

Story time. I have a favourate place for taking photos in the Thompson Canyon.  There is a rest stop off the westbound lanes 14km south of Spences Bridge.  Give or take ‘cause SB itself snakes along the river.  Easy to get at for me.  The Connector from Peachland and then Hwy 8.  Both great roads… Continue reading »

Homestead Lost

Highway 40 stretches west of Biggar Saskatchewan to the Alberta border where it turns into 14 through Wainwright and then on to Edmonton.  I wanted to photograph the CN main line here, and now, for two reasons.  One was the knowledge that small town Prairie is fast becoming history and September is just about guaranteed… Continue reading »