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Canadian Railroads > Westbound Ocean This Week

Date: 10/10/21 11:33
Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: cn6218

The Ocean is still only running one day a week in each direction, and the consist has tended to stay the same with the exception of the power, but the weather was so agreeable last Wednesday, I just had to get out for a chase as far as Folly Lake  (after that, it's John Reay's responsibility :-).

After shooting 511 (both empty and loaded) and 120 earlier that morning, I made myself comfortable at Bedford Quarry and waited for VIA 15 to cover the 13 miles from the downtown station.  They were delayed slightly by a late passenger, but the RTC got all the freight activity out of the way, and they glided past me at 13:41, 41 minutes after they should have left the station.

The next station stop was Truro.  To get to the station involves a lot of driving on the town's streets, and the time that consumes probably rules out getting another shot before Amherst.  Instead I skipped ahead to mile 15 of the Springhill Sub for this view of the train on the East Mines trestle.  It's actual name is a bit of a mystery.  Growing up, I always heard it referred to as the "Londonderry" trestle, but it's actually closer to East Mines Station, and the Folly River flows underneath the east end of it.  The former Trans Canada Highway runs under the west end.  The train was here at 15:03, about 15 minutes late at this point.  The mile 12 detector had clocked them at 70 mph, right on the passenger speed limit.

The video was taken at the top of the grade, the Folly Lake siding, 12 minutes after the train had crossed the trestle.  The train takes a winding route up the mountain, covering about 10 miles, but luckily the highway goes straight up the side, letting me beat the train with enough time to set up a tripod.


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Date: 10/10/21 12:31
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: refarkas

First-class work - Truly excellent photos and video.

Date: 10/10/21 13:55
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: rdjtrains

Ocean seems very long, and not a single Skyline car.  Seems dumb not to add a domw.

Date: 10/11/21 04:33
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: Train29

What are the passenger loads like? Not enough to provide more service? Are they pulling an Amtrak with downgrade from former service...i.e. Park Car and or Skyline? Both are in use on the Canadian and open. 

Date: 10/11/21 06:00
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: DrawingroomA

Train29 Wrote:
> What are the passenger loads like? Not enough to
> provide more service? Are they pulling an Amtrak
> with downgrade from former service...i.e. Park Car
> and or Skyline? Both are in use on the Canadian
> and open. 

From the little information available in photos and blogs it appears there are more passengers travelling on this weekly train that I would have thought. The official word from VIA is that regular inventory (that is VIA's way of saying three times a week) is available after November 15th, but they have already pushed back the resumption of full service, so nothing is for certain. As we have seen from various photos,. there are two HEP coaches, two Renaissance coaches, four Chateau sleepers and four Ren. sleepers. One of the Chateau sleepers is usually a crew sleeper, but that still provides a lot of sleeper space even though sections are not sold.

Because VIA says they are unable to  turn the train anywhere there will be no Park car and they refuse to commit to running a mid-train Skyline car. VIA says it would be too expensive to restore the wye at Windsor Jct. (about 15 miles from Halifax where the Ocean was turned regularly for many years) and have made no comment on why the train could not be turned at Truro. It would mean hauling the train in reverse formation for the 64 miles, but that would be preferable to the present arrangement.

No-one at VIA can give me information when the hot meal service will be restored in the Renaissance dining car. The photos of the plastic box of cold items do not look appealing to me, especially for three meals. VIA has the nerve to have been charging full summer sleeper fares for the current configuration and level of service. At least for the Canadian the fares were reduced by about a third when passengers were banned from the domes and lounges even though cooked-on-board meals were served twice a day in the dining car, with a cold lunch served in cabins. There has been a gradual return to normal on the Canadian and regular fares are now in effect.

Date: 10/11/21 06:48
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: joemvcnj

What is the schedule situation like with competing bus services like Orleans or whoever ? 

Date: 10/18/21 19:33
Re: Westbound Ocean This Week
Author: AndyBrown

That bridge shot is top shelf- very nice!


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