Thursday, September 4, 2014

VIA's Calgary-Edmonton RDCs, Part 4

CP and VIA operated the Calgary-Edmonton intercity service primarily with RDC's during the 1970's and into the VIA era. Earlier parts in this series dealt with a chronology and summary of the Dayliners used. There were many occasions on which the usual Dayliner was replaced with an F-unit (or E-unit!) or Geep-hauled conventional equipment. This was usually due to mechanical malfunction, grade-crossing accident or heavy traffic requiring both RDC's to operate together as one train in one direction. 
At Wetaskiwin, CP-painted 1424 leads two VIA cars (top) in an undated Glenn Brosinsky photo. CP Geep 8523 leads a CP-painted baggage and VIA-painted coach in 1980, also taken at Wetaskiwin (below). Glenn also captured a heavy consist of six cars (three stainless steel and three smooth-side) requiring two Geeps, at Christmastime in 1975 (above). 
Though no checked baggage was handled on the line, a baggage car was used to separate the locomotive from an occupied coach. CP-painted 1407 and two cars meet an RDC at Bowden (below). VIA 1407 retained its CP Rail Action Red until retired in 1983, so though the photo is undated, it was taken before the spring of 1983:
Brian Sullivan captured VIA No 197 with VIA engine 6569 in a moody night shot taken on April 24, 1981 at the South Edmonton station. Photo courtesy Peter Dawes:
Here's a daytime view of the South Edmonton station, dated July 22, 1978 from an online auction site, including a CP switcher and Budd car:
VIA 1410 leads two cars north beneath towering AWP grain elevators at Balzac in April, 1982:
CP 8515 has led this Budd car to Red Deer, where it was photographed by Bob Wilt, undated. Slide courtesy of Ron Visockis:
CP 8707 leeds a Dayliner past CP Rail Rules Instruction car 49 at Calgary in April, 1985. I had previously observed car 49 here in 1980, along with CP Rail business car Alberta.
VIA 1800 arriving with train No 194 at Calgary on January 25, 1980. Fred Clark photo:
Thanks to Glenn Brosinsky for sharing most of the photos used in this post (Glenn's unless otherwise noted). Glenn kindly sent two other photos showing the wrecked VIA RDC-1 6146 and a tank car from the 1983 Carstairs incident. I've added these to the preceding post, Part 3 of what has become a 4-part series on this problem-plagued intercity route! Or simply return to Part 1 and start reading all four posts in this series!

Lots o' links:
  • One of the five 1400's painted into VIA colours by August, 1979 interestingly hauling two CP Rail action red cars

Running extra...

For more western Canadian photos (a little less retro), check out Ben Alain's Flickr page. Ben has amassed a plethora of MoW shots that particularly caught my eye!

Another unique blog has been added to Trackside Treasure's sidebar: J D Lowe's 30 Squares of Ontario. A fine mix of model railroading, transit, arts, crafts and sciences. Some amazing model-building as well as some electrically eclectic modelling you may elect to examine to elucidate and educate!

I'm reminded of the lyrics to Danny Boy - From glen to glen (Glenn and/or Westmount's Glen yard?) and down the mountainside/The summer's gone and all the roses falling - remember to take the time to stop and smell the roses as well as stop, look and listen when approaching a crossing - you might be able to do some impromptu trainwatching!


GP9Rm4108 said...

The Geep and RDC don't look right together.

Eric said...

Agreed, Chris. There was something appropriately self-sufficient about seeing one or more Dayliners together. Sometimes deadheaded on the end of a conventional passenger consist - that didn't look right either!

Thanks for your comment,

BArailsystem said...

I thoroughly enjoyed that post Eric. Having only lived in Central Alberta for the last decade or so, it's hard to picture passenger service on the Red Deer and Leduc Subs. Closest we get nowadays is the holiday train on the even years and the occasional special charter like the Grey Cup train a few years back.
Thanks for the read.

Eric said...

Thanks for your kind comments, Ben. Your area is definitely under-serviced. By comparison, we have a plethora of passengers passing every day here in Kingston. Candid admission - sometimes I don't even record the numbers of a passing train, and that is unusual for me!

Reflecting on what was, instead of what is, might help some. These truly were pike-sized passenger trains!