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Canadian Railroads > Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 693

Date: 06/05/23 05:32
Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 693
Author: stuporchief

VIA train 693 from Winnipeg to Churchill departs twice a week from Winnipeg. There is only one return train per week from Churchlll (train 692) becuase one of the sets makes a round trip between Churchill and The Pas as trains 690/693, rather than returning to Winnipeg.

It seems that the  "short loop" 690/693 set remains in The Pas following its arrival on Wednesday, and is returned to Winnipeg with train 692, departing The Pas on Friday and arriving in Winnipeg on Saturday. Is that correct?

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 06/05/23 09:22 by stuporchief.

Date: 06/05/23 07:58
Re: Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 692
Author: WP17

There are two sets of equipment making the following 2 week cycles:
        :  Depart Winnipeg Tuesday Arrive Churchill Thursday Am
           Depart Churchill Thursday. Arrive Winnipeg Saturday pm
          Depart Winnipeg Sunday Arrive Churchill Tuesday AM
          Depart Churchill Tuesday pm . Arrive  The Pas Wednesday pm
          Depart The Pas Friday am, arrive Churchill Saturday am
          Depart Churchill Saturday pm. Arrive  Winnipeg Monday pm

So in any given week one set makes a Winnipeg - Churchill round trip while the other makes the Winnipeg-Churchill-The Pas-Churchill-Winnipeg routing

An unusual aspect of the schedule is that an on-time northbound train stays in Thompson for 5 hours (noon-5pm). This is designed to give passengers arriving from Churchill that morning (arriving on time at 11:30am) a chance to spend 4-5 hours in Thompson conducting whatever business they need to do and be able to head back to Churhill late that afternoon.

I hope I got this right:-)


Date: 06/05/23 08:57
Re: Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 692
Author: stuporchief

I think you did. I had to plot this all on a map to try to make sense of it. If you are correct, there would be two sets of southbound equipment at The Pas late Friday night. One that had departed Churchill on Tuesday, and the other that had departed Churchill Thursday. So I assume they are combined at The Pas and operated as one train, departing early Saturday morning and arriving Churchill Saturday afternoon?

This raises yet another question. What becomes of the onboard service crew that arrives in The Pas southbound late Wednesday night, where that train (#690) terminates? Do they wait for the following train (692) to deadhead them back to Winnipeg on Saturday? Or does VIA fly them home on Thursday? 

At this point I'm really FAR into the weeds, and not expecting an answer! 


Date: 06/05/23 18:34
Re: Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 692
Author: viatrainrider

I believe WP - 17 has it right.

As far as the on board crew is concerned at least in the not too distant past, they were taken from WPG to The Pas in a van and the southbound crew would return to WPG in said van.   In addition, the van would handle additional food needed for the northbound 691 as that consist had already been to Churchill as 693 and returning to The Pas.  The 690 would tie down on a siding a little south of the station.

I have been up there many times but not since the pandemic so correct me if there is more current procedures.

Date: 06/05/23 18:52
Re: Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 692
Author: viatrainrider

Well not quite.

Try this:  Su  693 lv WPG arr Churchill Tu
690 lv Churchill Tu night arr The Pas We night.
691 lv The Pas 02:30 Fr arr Churchill Sa am
692 lv Churchill Sat pm
692 arr WPG late Mo evening

But I know for sure crews transported by vans.  And Tuesday's WPG departure is a WPG - Churchill that arrives and departs Churchill Thursday arriving WPG Saturday.  Gee you guys are making me think!  Guess this is the same as whatWP -17 thinks.

Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 06/05/23 19:34 by viatrainrider.

Date: 06/09/23 07:37
Re: Equipment cycle of Churchill trains 690, 692 & 692
Author: CP8888

So if I read this correctly riders Winnipeg to Churchill either return the same day (Thursday) or spend 4 nights Tues/Wed/Thurs/Fri return on Saturday.

Not very convenient for ppls interested in the train trip.

What is the purpose of the Churchill to The Pas short haul? Cost savings?

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