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The world of trains according to David Graham

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2009

| January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November | December |

10.01.09.shtml

January 10th, 2009

I finally took some track time and went to Gore Rd at mile 50 of the Galt sub for CP 147 and another westbound, and over to mile 30 for CN 385, 339, and 422.

24.01.09.shtml

January 24th, 2009

Steve called me to let me know that 580 had just left Cambridge with a dimensional. I took off down highway 24 and saw it crossing ahead of me at the crossing. I went back for it at Wellington Rd 32, and then waited for the light there to change. It never did, and after several minutes I turned south on highway 24 and turned around, going to CN Guelph Junction for it coming off the Fergus sub and heading west on the Guelph.

07.02.09.shtml

February 7th, 2009

We got an early start, leaving Guelph at 6:30, and chased a plow run from Stratford to Goderich on the GEXR. We then returned to Stratford to shoot some parked Class 66s (in tarps) and some KCS units in the yard, then headed to Zorra where we reported a defective crossing and shot CP 153, 138, T69, and 245. From there we went to Ingersoll and shot VIA 76 and CN X368, an army move that I did not know was coming. We chased that to Creditville and called it a (good) day.

14.02.09.shtml

February 14th, 2009

We started our day in Rouses Point, New York, where we found the D&H quite quiet. We crossed Lake Champlain over to St. Albans, Vermont, where the NECR showed equally little sign of life, so decided to follow the VRS through Rutland to get to Brattleboro, our destination. Not long after leaving Burlington, we heard two extras being set up to meet in Chester, Vermont. Being two hours from there we had lots of time to wonder if we'd see it, and along the way we were distracted by an SBU blaring around New Haven, Vermont. We knew we were near a train on the Rutland-Burlington line but after trying to find it unsuccessfully for a while, we pushed on, ultimately reaching Chester about an hour after the meet had taken place. We caught the westbound in the woods about 5 miles out of town, but didn't get ahead of the eastbound until Bellows Falls, where the train was headed.

15.02.09.shtml

February 15th, 2009

We woke up to the sound of horns and heard NECR #611 heading through town. We chased it to the main crossing in Vernon.

17.02.09.shtml

February 17th, 2009

We left Brattleboro on the morning of the 16th and went to NMH, where I caught up with some of my old teachers and classmates for most of the day. In the late afternoon, we cut across Mass. to the Hoosac tunnel in Florida, but the Guilford gods did not love us and no trains were forthcoming, although a local railfan reported a Bow coal empty was supposed to be on its way. We slept in Utica that night and on the 17th we started the day there, shooting the Mohawk, Adirondack, and Western and an NYSW unit from afar that came in by surprise. We chased the MHWA to Rome, where we followed the wrong spur and took a while to find it out in the industrial park on the east side of town. From there we chased CSX Q091, the ultra-high priority vegetable train to Lyons, catching it only once at Syracuse yard, and there only barely. From Lyons, where we missed Q091 by about 7 minutes, we headed up to Geneva to see what we could find on the FGLK, and chased the Lyons job back to Lyons before heading out to the Rochester and Genessee Valley Railroad Museum south of Rochester and finally completing our trip by getting back to Guelph a few minutes past 10pm.

21.02.09.shtml

February 21st, 2009

We went to Ingersoll for a wedding and stopped at the station for a few between it and the reception.

22.02.09.shtml

February 22nd, 2009

We heard about an EMD move of Egyptian Class 66s and went to Guelph station for them. We got the GJE leaving southbound and then began the waiting game. After several hours, we received word that the train was stopped in Stratford and went home, and immediately got word it had left. Trevor and I headed up to Breslau to get it and then chased it back to Guelph before calling it a day.

14.03.09.shtml

March 14th, 2009

I went to Wolverton to see the new yard there, just missing 152 and T69. Heard T69 switching at Ayr and went for it there, barely catching it, then headed to Paris, just missing 385, then to Killean for T69 one more time on the way home.

15.03.09.shtml

March 15th, 2009

We went to east switch Puslinch for an eastbound and #243 with two GEVOs.

22.03.09.shtml

March 22nd, 2009

We took off on a cloudy morning to Guelph Junction, found silent tracks, and moved over to mile 30. CN 339 and 385 came through in short order and we took off back to Puslinch to see a 7000 foot 243 meet an eastbound. We didn't make it to Puslinch in time to get 243 arriving, and chased it to Galt where it had to set off two units. As soon as 243 cleared the bridge, the sun came out and remained out for the rest of the day, and, as a consequence, that was the last train we could find in four more hours out.

11.04.09.shtml

April 11th, 2009

With a serious case of cabin fever setting in and beautiful weather outside, we went to the Galt sub for an unidentified westbound, came back for lunch, then went to mile 30 for an eastbound and rerouted CN Q199. With nothing else in the area we headed up to Tottenham to shoot the South Simcoe tourist train and then went to VIT for a southbound before returning home.

16.04.09.shtml

April 16th, 2009

On my way back from errands I ran across OSR at Woolwich/Speedvale heading north, so turned to follow them and shot them (video only) crossing Woodlawn, then chased 580 back down to Alma St./CN Guelph Junction and went home.

21.04.09.shtml

April 21st, 2009

Greg warned of a CN 5722-CN 5244-AMT 270-AMT 293-GOT 521-GOT 533-GOT 524-GOT 522-GOT 529-GOT 534 lashup on 422. I went to mile 30 for it and shot it between sunspots and rainshowers.

23.04.09.shtml

April 23rd, 2009

I went down to London for an interview, and stopped at EMD to see what was up on the way back. I then took the scenic route following the Guelph sub home, and narrowly missed VIA 85 on the St. Mary's viaduct and saw a very short 433 leaving Stratford not worth stopping to shoot (4019 + two cars).

25.04.09.shtml

April 25th, 2009

The Guelph Historical Railway Association put on a rare miles tour with the Guelph Junction Express, runnint into the industrial tracks in Guelph and doing two photo runbys. I volunteered on the train and took a few photos and some short video clips while not otherwise occupied using my wife's point-and-shoot camera rather than the bulky SLR I normally use.

08.05.09.shtml

May 8th, 2009

On our way to the wedding of one of my oldest friends in rural New Hampshire, we stopped in to see the Ontario Midland, CSX, HRRC, and PVRR, finding very little running. We brought our camera in for a cleaning, and it was returned to us without charge because of an apparently immutable piece of dirt on the sensor, so another railfan trip goes into the record with a great big spot in the upper-right corner of all my photos.

09.05.09.shtml

May 9th, 2009

Travelling from southern Vermont to eastern New Hampshire for a wedding, we explored tracks north out of Concord and into Meredith.

10.05.09.shtml

May 10th, 2009

Back in Brattleboro, we got up early to see NECR 324 heading through town.

11.05.09.shtml

May 11th, 2009

Returning home from New Hampshire we stopped for the night in Henrietta, NY. In the morning we chased the LAL from the RGVRRM museum back into Henrietta, then went back to the museum to pick up my sunglasses which I realised in Henrietta I had left on the trunk.... they were present, on the road, and had miraculously not been run over. From there we went over to R&S' tracks, found them shiny but with no indication as to where or how far away a train was, and pushed on to Brockport on the Falls Road, which we followed fruitlessly back to Lockport where we found a CSX local leaving. From there we went to Depew, missed 3 as we approached, and caught 377 and 63. Back in Canada a few minutes later we caught CP 254 at Guelph Junction and watched VIA 87 while our pizza was baked at a nearby pizzeria.

24.05.09.shtml

May 24th, 2009

Steve picked me up and we went to Galt to see what we could find in an hour. We caught an eastbound, fruitlessly chased Hagey job, and found some MoW equipment working a tie replacement program at the Highway 24 crossing on the Fergus sub.

01.06.09.shtml

June 1st, 2009

I headed down to mile 30 to catch up with a once stalwart local railfan returning for a visit and caught CN 384, 148, and 339.

03.06.09.shtml

June 3rd, 2009

I headed down to New England for my high school reunion and picked up WJED at Brattleboro with a PanAm painted unit meeting the northbound Vermonter.

04.06.09.shtml

June 4th, 2009

After arriving at NMH before my classmates, I headed back out to the tracks for a bit for Amtrak 55 and NECR 323.

09.06.09.shtml

June 9th, 2009

On my way home from reunion I stopped to chase the Batten Kill, which operates exclusively with the venerable RS-3. I asked the crew at Greenwich shops where the train was and was told it was parked at Cambridge, so headed up there to wait for them to come on duty and chased them to Greenwich Junction where I broke off and headed for Whitehall. There I caught CP 253 and continued north. Coming into the Laurentians I saw QGRY rather than CP power at Ste-Therese yard so bailed off the 15 and went for a closer look.

14.06.09.shtml

June 14th, 2009

We landed at Gatwick airport and took the train up to Reading, connected to Maidenhead, and were picked up at Bourne End.

15.06.09.shtml

June 15th, 2009

We were invited to stay with a family friend in Wellington, near Taunton, and tour the West Somerset Railway. We boarded the train at Reading station and went across to Newport, Wales, returning via Bristol and heading down to Taunton for the next day's trip. At Newport, we went to a bridge and watched for about 30 minutes. Moments after we left, a train came over with a pair of rare Class 67s! Grumbling at the loss, I was more than a little surprised to have the same train return a few minutes later and take us to Taunton.

16.06.09.shtml

June 16th, 2009

We spent the day touring the West Somerset Railway, and headed up to Dunster Castle.

17.06.09.shtml

June 17th, 2009

After a wonderful day and a half in Wellington and on the West Somerset Railway, we headed back to High Wycombe as only a trainspotter could -- via Birmingham and Water Orton station.

19.06.09.shtml

June 19th, 2009

We headed from High Wycombe up to Barnetby, a busy freight location every trainspotter we met told us we had to visit.

20.06.09.shtml

June 20th, 2009

We travelled from Barnetby across to Darwen, north of Manchester, to meet a friend, and then headed back to Wycombe.

22.06.09.shtml

June 22nd, 2009

We went to Oxford for a couple of hours in the afternoon and were graced with the unexpected arrival of the Tornado, Britain's freshly built steam engine.

23.06.09.shtml

June 23rd, 2009

We came home, returning to Gatwick by train.

24.07.09.shtml

July 24th, 2009

I waited at Erindale GO to pick a friend up from work nearby to go to Parry Sound for his bachelor party, only seeing a single GO train while I waited.

25.07.09.shtml

July 25th, 2009

I spent the day around Parry Sound, based out of Oastler Lake Provincial Park, catching 3 CP intermodals, all with DPU, at Reynolds, the connection point between CN and CP for the Parry Sound<->Sudbury directional running.

26.07.09.shtml

July 26th, 2009

A 'blue banana', a Babcock and Wilcox 505-ton steam generator component, the first in about 5 years, spent 9 days sitting in the yard at Guelph. I received a report shortly after waking up in Parry Sound that it had left Guelph at 08:40. With the help of MDC, I was able to intercept it at Bramalea GO station with about one minute to spare. It spent the rest of the day winding its way down to Toronto harbour. While I had originally planned to chase it, the extremely bad weather dissuaded me.

01.08.09.shtml

August 1st, 2009

I went up to Sarnia for Mischa's wedding, stopping for 394 just short of the city, missing 383 and 397 and getting 385 and 301 at the Via station, all back/cloudlit.

03.09.09.shtml

September 3rd, 2009

I received a scramble for an EMD extra coming into Guelph with assorted export units and got it just after sunset at Guelph station along with Steve, Chris, Bill, and Trevor. The train had: HLCX 6091-HLCX 6522-EMDX 11002-Veolia Transport (France) 077501-077502-077503-Egyptian Railways 2157-AAST2-2161-2159-2154-2150-2151-2155-2152-2158-2160-2162-2156-2149-2153-2163-EMDX 11001.

08.10.09.shtml

October 8th, 2009

With a few hours to kill on a rare beautiful but cool day, I went to mile 30 and Guelph Junction to meet Mischa and see what would come. CN #392 was first up with a BCOL C40-8M, then saw CP #525, #426, #242, and #421.

08.11.09.shtml

November 8th, 2009

I went flying over lunch hour and saw the Guelph Junction Express, then later went back out for GEXR X431 with the recently arrived FEC unit at the Alma St crossing.

16.11.09.shtml

November 16th, 2009

I was downtown at the right place at the right time for OSR heading southbound with three rockets by the River Run Centre, and then caught GEXR 431 with 2 CN units at last light at the station before going home for the day.

26.11.09.shtml

November 26th, 2009

Trevor had American Thanksgiving off and so picked me up first thing in the morning to head up to Goderich and see what was happening. We left the house a little after 9, catching Via 84 at P&H in Breslau. P&H's sign is gone and there's a rezoning application at the facility, but the backtrack is still full of grain hoppers. After that, we hopped over to the bridge coming into Kitchener and saw GEXR 580, found nothing at the station in Kitchener, and went on to Stratford where we found 433 with 4001-6061 preparing to head east. We went back to Shakespeare to shoot 433 on the bridge over Highway 7, got out of the car, and heard a loud hissing noise. We abandoned the chase and returned to Stratford to rectify the rapidly flattening tire and have lunch. It worked out well, as when the car was ready and we had eaten, 433 returned from Kitchener. We shot it working and then shot 85 at the station, then pushed on to Goderich, where we happened upon the two CN units GEXR is using moments before they headed into the salt mine. Don't know the last time CN power worked that mine...

29.11.09.shtml

November 29th, 2009

Got a scramble wakeup call at dawn that a Canadian Forces extra was westbound by West Toronto. Went to Puslinch for it, but was fogged in, so shot it (no video) at Galt bridge.

30.12.09.shtml

December 30th, 2009

I went to Terrebonne to meet local railfans Sam and J-F. They took me on an excellent adventure along the CN Lac-St-Jean subdivision to chase CN 369 with DPU south back to Shawinigan and catch VIA 601 with ex-GO units. We caught both of those and CN L522 in Shawinigan, finding out only after returning to Terrebonne about a wind turbine train on the QGRY that we silently passed in Trois-Rivières. Excellent, if extremely cold, day over all. The time between shots and videos was mostly taken up warming the camera batteries so they would have enough strength for the next set of shots, not always succeeding as the video camera frequently gave up from the cold -18C + windchill chase.

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