Tuesday, November 11, 2008

CP 2816, Lethbridge To Calgary - The Night Before

Well, it's been just over a month and a bit and I'm now finally posting about my 2816 chase. I finally hunkered down and took a really good look at my shots. This post is about the night before the chase back to Calgary. I'll post about the chase this coming weekend.

Has I mentioned in my post on October 2nd, I was taking the 9th off from work to go down to Lethbridge and chase 2816 back to Calgary. I left on the evening of the 8th and had a nice surprise when I arrived at Lethbridge Yard that night.

October 08, 2008

My evening started after a two hour drive when I arrived in Fort McLeod. It was about 7:30 by then and it was dark out. So I turned down what appeared to be 21st Street and took Third Ave until I got to 13th Street. Once on 13th, I saw about 20 to 30 white box cars that appeared to be crew quarters and such. I then turned down to 12th Street and headed west on that until just past the grain silo and turned around. Amongst the many grain hoppers, I saw more of these crew quarters on one of the far tracks. I decided to head out and back on the highway towards Lethbridge. To my regret I didn't take any pictures of the crew cars. I'll have to go back someday when it's light out.

As I'm driving down Highway 3, I'm thinking to myself that I'm not really familiar with the area and wondering where I was going to find 2816. Well, just as I finished that thought, I saw a large billowing plume rising into the night sky illuminated by the surrounding lighting. I had found her!

I turned off at Highway 509 and drove across the bridge over the tracks and down a road paralleling the tracks and into a parking lot. I couldn't believe it, a yard with a parking lot beside it. At this point I was excited that I could get so close to the train. I walked up as far as the gravel-pavement transition beside two others, a man and a woman, who were there admiring the sight as well. They told me that if I hung around with them that there was a good possibility that I could get a tour of a couple of the cars. I was so excited from when I first arrived that I had left my camera in the car. I ran back to grab it quickly and waited with them. About 15 minutes later I was on board one of the coach cars.

The unfortunate thing is that some of the photographs are a bit blurry because the shutter speed was slow as lighting level was low and I didn't want to use a flash and risk washing out everything in white. I wanted to try and capture the mood. It didn't quite work out for some pictures. I used the flash only in really low lighting areas.

Interior shots of CP 5534 and CP 5503 coach cars.

Interior shots of the First Class car NSR 3103 "Wisconsin Valley"and #53 "Superdome".

Interior shots of Skytop Lounge #800040 "Cedar Rapids".

Interior cab shots of FP9A CP 1401.

Exterior shots of 2816 drives and front.

Time lapse shot of "Superdome" and "Cedar Rapids".

After all the fun, I headed for Lethbridge to look for a Holiday Inn Express. I kind of got lost for about 20 minutes. After driving around for a bit, I finally found one and went to bed.

The consist was:
  1. CP 2816 "Empress" 4-6-4 Hudson
  2. First Tender, 12,000 gals Water, 4,600 gals Diesel
  3. Second Tender 23,000 gals Water
  4. CP 1401 FP9A Diesel Locomotive
  5. CP 1900 F9B Diesel Locomotive
  6. CP 29114 , A box car used as a tool car (CP cars all solid maroon color)
  7. CP 96 Power Car
  8. CP 110 “H.B. Bowen, a 8 duplex Rmte, 4 Br, 6 Rmte sleeping car (with one roomette converted to shower)
  9. Milwaukee Road #31 “Minnesota River” 8-4-6 Sleeper (with one Roomette converted to shower)
  10. CP RPCX 5534 Coach Car
  11. CP RPCX 5503 Coach Car
  12. Milwaukee Road NSR 3103 “Wisconsin Valley”, “First Class” car with furniture type seating, plus a kitchen/food service area.
  13. Milwaukee Road #53 “Superdome” (full length dome car, ex-Milw. Rd car built by PS in 1952)
  14. Milwaukee Road #800040 “Cedar Rapids” Skytop Lounge (Parlor Observation - built by Milw. Rd. in 1948)
Some consist inforation from: Railroad.net

Google Earth kmz file.


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