Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A day at Kingston, November 1985

November 25, 1985: A cold but sunny day, ideal for railfanning in the vicinity of Kingston's VIA station. At 0941, 6919-3474-3313-3396, VIA train 40 accelerates eastward from its station stop. Right on 40's block is the eastbound roadswitcher out of Belleville, at 0953 behind 4486 with four boxcars, two gons and a bulkhead flat of lumber ahead of caboose 79792. They'd later return westward at 1153 with only two cars.
At 1014, VIA train 60 is pulling in with a nine-car, two-locomotive LRC consist: 6916-3339-3365-3317-3371-3346-3363-3353-3315-3465-6914:
The trainman hits the ground to line a switch. 3744, three CN boxcars and caboose 79438 are arriving in track KL29 off Queens track 4 at 1110. Twenty minutes later, with 79438 in the lead, 3744 will push seven covered gons across Counter Street and up the hill into the Alcan aluminum plant property.
At 1122, a five-car VIA train 61 is westbound: 6920-3356-3332-3359-3311-3458. After a McDonald's lunch break, a scruffy 6502 hauls 3249-5468 as diminutive VIA train 44, accelerating eastward at 1247:
6502 has barely cleared Queens East when a westbound hotshot freight appears with 5284-5037-2333 (smokin'), and boxcars, COFC, TOFC and autoracks in tow:
Before this train finishes passing, 4486 backs eastward on the south track with empty adipic acid covered hoppers after switching the DuPont nylon plant located at the south end of the Cataraqui Spur:
Long and short LRC train consists: VIA train 63 at 1344 westbound 6920-3371-3351-3338-3349-3327-3343-3336-3368-3308-3467-6915, and VIA train 62 at 1325 eastbound 6905-3361-3374-3347-3354-3373-3468-6930. 6788 hauls a short VIA train 43 west at 1359: deadhead 4887-5616-3214:
The last train of the day was a mostly empty westbound Laser, an underwhelming five loads and caboose 79440 at 1523. 9591 and 9436 are on the last note of their 14(l) as they cross Coronation Boulevard crossing in Amherstview near Mi 182 Kingston Sub:
A week later I was off to Montreal on VIA. Some sightings:
Brockville CN 9555-9495
Regis CN 1368
Coteau CN 4013
Dorval CP 4228 with 8 cars
Turcot CN 3735-4424, 9463-9618
Montreal CN 7156, 7151, 7168, 8519, 1298, 4422, VIA 6762
Montreal Harbour NHB 8405
Taschereau Yard CN 2100-2322-5036-79309
Dorval CP 5000-5564-5544-5912, 4569-4561-4500-8760-434581

Running Extra...

Attended a great bluegrass concert tonight featuring Monroe Crossing, a five-member bluegrass group out of Minnesota, about whom one reviewer remarked "I dare ANYONE to watch Monroe Crossing and not get happy." Missed the Orange Blossom Special, but did hear a CN freight whistling during the guitar intro to one of their songs.

The Orange Blossom Special operated over the Seaboard Air Line from Richmond to Miami. Airline service to Europe was disrupted this week by the Mount Scruinneveribodiupp volcano in Iceland, with ash clouds reaching as far west as Newfoundland, disrupting travel plans for Juno Awards performers including Michael Buble' and Bryan Adams.

Reading FOB Doc - A Doctor on the Front Lines in Afghanistan, by Captain Ray Wiss, MD. A gritty tale of medical miracles performed by Canadian medics on the dusty plains of the Panjwayi.

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