Thursday, March 13, 2014

Springtime at Kingston Station

Is the word 'springtime' an exaggeration? Perhaps, but the signs were there. The air was warmer, at least when standing in sun if not in shadow. Our great-nephew stayed with us for a couple of his March break days, and one item on his agenda was train-watching. To me, that agenda item makes him a great great-nephew. On March 10 and 11, our evenings were partly spent at Kingston's VIA station. Don't let the snow in the photos fool you. Spring is coming. So was more snow: 20 cm last night! 
The only freight train we observed was slick with these eastbound oil loads. Though I'd predicted the lead unit would be red, white & blue, it turned out to be a repaint, albeit with BCOL sub-lettering and those weird super-sized Homewood shops cab-side numbers. Tagging along behind BCOL 4641 at 1712 as it passed the 'E' sign (above) were 2621-IC 2697, seen passing the 'F' sign (below). Great-nephew's eyes grow wide as the UN 1267-laden VMSX tank cars pound by: 28316, 28319, 311869, 311074 and others say 'tanks for the memories' as they recede to the east.
VIA No 55 is on Track 2 just past the 'C' sign at 1720. With 906 on the head-end and 6415 trailing, 3468-3330-3353 rattle along in between. Who doesn't like riding the escalators to reach the under-track tunnel?
Take the 'A' train?....
As you'll see, I don't believe it's possible to present enough photos of VIA's new Business Class cars. Very clubby. Very photogenic. Twenty minutes behind No 55, No 66 arrives with 3451 trailing 908, then 3316-3328 (Renaissance scheme) -3325-3473.
Brought to you by the letter F. For Freight trains, please. (If it was really springtime, the station attendant would not be wearing a toque.)
VIA No 67 was being bustituted this night, due to a trespasser fatality near Cornwall. Passengers were told to wait for the bus to arrive...from take them back through Toronto! No 46 arrived at 1800 behind 6409, dragging old-school VIA 1 car 4001-3457-3361-3370. The handicapped sign is prominent.
The next night at 1650, VIA No 44 arrives ten minutes late behind 903. Renaissance scheme 3464-3368-and Ren 3348 trail. Fire extinguisher sign caught my eye:
Normally, only the characteristic 'hockey-stick' platform light standards mar the views here, as noted in this earlier post and shown in every photo gracing the cover of my first book on VIA Rail. One above the car looks like special lighting to show the 'Business / Affaires' lettering on 3464's side:
The decades-old metal sign implores you to 'Keep off Tracks'. Sound advice.
The sign above the door on the construction trailer at the west end of the station shows CN's 24-hr emergency number. Our great-nephew, being a truck aficianado, noted the hi-rail wheels on both pickup trucks and the larger boom truck and asked thoughtful questions about how the trucks move along the rails!
E  is for...Eccident? Look at the damage to the corner of the front corner of 902's monocoque on the engineer's side, also visible in the top photo of VIA No 55 arriving at 1728. 902-3474-Ren 3319-3367:
Years ago, my Dad coined the phrase 'Careful fingers!!' to protect a young visitor's digits, and the phrase stuck. VIA has posted 'Careful thumbs!!' signs on the cab entry doors of P42DC 918, among others. No 66's power leads 3452-3365-3313 at 1747. It looks like the the cab door handles have caused a few blue thumbnails, and perhaps some blue language, too!
Trains rapides. Eloignez-vous des voies signs mark the rear of Ren Business Class car 3455, trailing 917 and leading 3318-3306-3334 on No 46 at 1802. English trainslation: Really, really fast trains. Distance yourself of the tracks! If you know what's good for you!
And that's just what we did after No 46 left. The great-nephew is task-oriented. His checklist for the evening: Train station...check. Pizza Pizza. Running trains in the basement. Playing Legos. Or as I might call it, Best Evening Ever!

Running extra...

Last weekend's Kingston Rail-O-Rama found me arriving on Kingston Express bus 1364. Finds included some Tim Reid and Bob Hunter Kingston railfanning photos bought from the irrepressible Liz Reid, some Vintage Tyco (searchlight car!) from Ron Barrett (going postal in a good way!) and several additions to my railway library, including my annual Morning Sun Books volume - CP Facilities Volume 1. Home aboard Kingston Express 1370.

Prolific bloggers: Chris and Connie, over at BIGDoer. Check out their then and now now and then.

A new CN caboose project website includes this photographer's photo of CN 79707 Dubbya.


Allison said...

Who would have thought there was so much one could n-o-t-i-c-e trackside in Kingston. All those cool signs on everything! Great explication!

I am enjoying the inexorable pull of the train tracks on your adorable great nephew!! Or is it his pull on you?!?

Eric said...

Well, one great thing about having kids is the ability to relive one's childhood, vicariously perhaps.

Other family members, the Schellenbergs come to mind, enjoyed the same pursuits with visiting family members, remember?

Thanks for your comment! I enjoy enlightenment through both explication and exegesis.


GP9Rm4108 said...

It seems you missed how 2697 is an IC unit!

Eric said...

You're right Chris, and you'll have to forgive me. The 'IC' lettering is hard to see:
on cab side and I was lucky to get the locomotive numbers!

Bigger fish to fry - CN No 710 at Belleville with four units, including two BNSF right now.

GP9Rm4108 said...

Those 710's almost always have non CN units on them.

Brian from Fergus said...

I have one of those old Tyco search light cars (it was the bright red and yellow PRR version) from a set my dad built for me many, many years ago. It still works! My wife decided to paint it for me as a "freelanced add-on" to the MOW equipment on our CN layout. It's pretty wobbly, as the wheel-sets aren't the best, but new couplers gave it a new lease on life.

Eric said...

Glad to hear it, Brian. While I haven't had mine out of the box yet, I am surprised that there are still some available in the boxes! Comes with the original instructions. I thought it was a curiosity, and was happy to buy it at the same price as the others, while the original price was more!

I can never have enough HO-scale MOW equipment!

Thanks for your comment,