My Mom and Dad travelled on VIA's Canadian between Kingston and Portage la Prairie, MB in July-August 1983. End-cupola van CP 437394 at Sudbury on July 21, during their stroll up to the headend during the servicing stop. The perennial view across from the station was the Sudbury arena. Known for combining more than one subject in a photo, my Dad has captured a multimarked, capped CP Rail truck, Sudbury bus and the area in one frame:
That Sudbury bus scheme was designed by Gottschalk & Ash in 1972! Chapleau was reached at 1300, with servicing until 1330. Time to check out CPR 5433 in the trackside park. The Chapleau auxiliary was outside the car shop - no number visible. Two 4700's and an MLW switcher reposed nearby.
'Vacation weather' (thanks, Dave!) set in on July 26 as VIA No 2 was arriving with 6507-6607-6602 at 1630. My Dad noted that several cars, including 'their' Amherst Manor from VIA No 1 were returning east on this train after reaching Vancouver.
VIA 3214-126-129-6616 (left to right) are opposite the Portage station as baggage and passengers occupy the platform along with the operator's car:
An evening visit trackside on July 30 netted a quartet of variously-attired cylindricals ready for loading at the United Grain Growers elevator just west of the CN station:
Evening shadows lengthen as CP 5561 and a Geep lead grain boxcars westward, with CP's yard at left and CN welding gang cars at right:
Forget Counting Crows. Start Counting Combines! Here's Massey-Ferguson with high (candy-striped) and low multimarks, westward past CP's station on August 2:
At CN's station, it's Combines! Massey-Fergs on a CP bulkhead flat car on CN's team track. CN lumber car accompanying at right, with CN boxcars loaded at Portage Pool 'B' behind.
In the yard, you guessed it, more Combines! CN 4307 and an F-unit are leading this westbound in the CN yard on August 2:
On August 5, potash empties plodded westward past the CN station. My Dad's photo, taken under that high, hot afternoon sun, bring back memories of the clanking freight cars, the warm creosote, dry grass blowing and all the other sights and sounds of Portage trainwatching in one picture!
Part 2 of this series showcases more of my Dad's trackside photos in Portage, Winnipeg and the trip back home to Kingston aboard VIA No 2.
Prince Street blog partner Chris Mears and I have been talking about dusting off the Railfan Five Challenge - five years later. Originally conceived as sharing five formative fotos from our railfanning journey, now we're thinking of Railfan Five x2 (or Two, or 2.0?) which would be five railfan photos taken by others. Five we WISH we'd taken - had we been there and been able to, perhaps at an earlier time. This should be easy. Or will it be? Hmmmmm.
My uncle from Portage sent along this link. Canada's government grain car fleet sold off at less than scrap value? That's going against the grain! CN and CP have infused their fleet with newer, predecessor-road covered hoppers from IC and DM&E/SOO respectively.
Coming November 1 - can we ever have enough books on the Canadian? Ira Silverman's photographic take on the rides he took on this Budd masterpiece, coming from Garbely Publishing.
Love these old Portage photos.
I think I would have a hard time limiting myself to just five photos I wish I had taken!
Thanks, Steve. Me, too!
The Railfan Five Challenge Deuxieme will be an exercise in fine fotographic frugality!
Thanks for more great Portage photos, Eric. Things seem nice and consistent with 1982. Good to have more detail photos of Combines loaded on flatcars. 1983 must've been a record production year for Massey Ferguson!
The credit really belongs to my Dad, Elijah, for bringing (and using!) his modest Kodak Instamatic at Portage. At some point, I'll publish a CHOFC post, but until then, these photos will have to suffice. Wouldn't it be interesting to find the list of cars and implements emanating from the Ferg around that time! Record production indeed!
Thanks for your comment,
My Mom and Dad travelled on VIA's Canadian between Kingston and Portage la Prairie, MB in July-August 2018. End-cupola van CP 437394 at Sudbury on July 21, during their stroll up to the headend during the servicing stop. The perennial view across from the station was the Sudbury arena. Known for combining more than one subject in a photo, my Dad has captured a multimarked, capped CP Rail truck, Sudbury bus and the area in one frame
Hi Eric: Wow. Fast forward 35 years. Methinks the year may be in error? Great reading.
Ha! Thanks for the tip, Bryan. Revised.
It did make for a great trip account, I agree!
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