Friday, December 7, 2007

NB Southern Eastbound Dec 6

I thought I would try chasin a train with some snow in the shots. I have never done this with so much snow down. I left Saint John around 1:30pm. I wasn't sure how the roads would be so I gave myself some time to get to Vespra. As I was approaching Fredericton Junction I heard some chatter on the scanner. It sounded like the train was recieving a clearance from the RTC. But I was far enough away I couldn't hear it clear. I made it to Vespra before the train at 3:00pm. I only sat for about 20 minutes before the train came. It was an interesting sight. Normally when I sit at Vespra (where the road turns to dirt) I would see alot of dust from cars on the road. Today I could see a large snow cloud getting closer as the train approached. So I decided I would try some photos first while I had daylight.
My first shot was coming into Tracy at 3:27pm
The second shot is just leaving Fredericton Junction at 3:42pm. I could tell I was getting some dark shots so I thought I would switch to video at this point.
My first video shot I went to Welsford. I caught it crossing the highway there at 4:16pm. Some of the regular railfan spots were quite snowed in. And parking wasn't the easiest. At 4:29pm I caught it rolling through Westfield.
This is my second try at this spot. It is located close to the RCMP station in Westfield. It turned out quite well.
And then for my last shot I did a close one at Acamac at 4:48pm. You really get to see some snow in this shot. I turned the shot to make sure I didn't cover the lense with snow. I got the brunt of the snow squal the train created. The train consisted of GP38s #9801,2317,9802 and 35 cars. I feel the video turned out good. It was accepted on Rail-Videos.Net. The only thing I might note. When chasing trains in winter, where a warm coat even on a nice day. And bring some good boots so you can get into those snow filled places. Now here is the video.. enjoy!
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Monday, December 3, 2007

My luck has continued...

It must be my week. I posted my video of a NBSR passenger train from October to Rail-Videos.Net and it was accepted. This site is run by the same people as RailPictures.Net. And to add to the excitement my video was the first video from New Brunswick. I will be definitely trying to get some more on the site. Click this link to see my video on their site

Sunday, December 2, 2007

First photo on RailPictures.net

After many attempts I have finally managed to get a photo on RailPictures.net The photo I submitted was one from my previous blog. NBSR 9803 & 2610 shunting at the east end of the Dever Rd Yard. The screeners are usually quite picky. But the only comment they had was about the photo being unlevel. I corrected it with PhotoShop and they accepted it. You can see the photo on their site here

Friday, November 30, 2007

NBSR - Saint John Sightings Nov 30


While out looking for some trains I found a couple of yard crews working in the Dever Road Yard. The first was GP38 #2612 working by itself on the west end of the yard. I made a small video of the unit shunting. You can hear the radio chatter from the crew in the video.
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At the east end of the Dever Rd Yard GP38s #9803,2610 were putting a long cut of boxcars together on the main line that runs through the yard. NBSR sometimes stores empty cars on the rarely used track. I took some photos of the crew working from the bridge overlooking the east end.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

NB Southern - 9802 Eastbound Nov 21

On Nov 21st I filmed the NBSR eastbound. The last time I chased the train it arrived at Vespra around 3:30pm, so I left Saint John at 2pm to make sure I'd get there by then. It can be hit and miss not knowing the actual time the train is due at McAdam. But today worked out good. I arrived at Vespra around 3:15pm. I was there only a short time when a call to the RTC was made on the scanner. They received a go ahead to proceed from mile 60.0 to the Dever Road Yard limits.
I set up on a private crossing just east of the grade crossing at Vespra. At 3:42pm the train arrived. GP38s 9802 & 2317 were the power along with 29 cars. On the drive up to meet this train I decided on some new spots for shooting.
My second shot I caught the train in Tracy at 3:51pm. I decided on catching a side shot of the train along the straight stretch. I like shooting at the Rte 7 crossing in Welsford.
Today I wanted to get a sound clip of the hot box detector. I like adding any sound clips of radio chat when I can just to make the video a little more interesting. At 4:29pm 9802 rolls through Welsford after no alarms from the last hot box detector before Saint John. And for my last shot I decided on a spot in Westfield just east of the RCMP office. At 4:40pm the train rolled through. Things weren't going so good though.
When I arrived at the spot there was quite abit of traffic. By the time I got out and across the road the train was coming into the curve. Then the ground was unlevel so I had to adjust my tripod. I got just enough of the train to put in the video. And with loosing the light I called it quits on taping and just followed the train into Saint John. So here's the video of my day..

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Monday, November 12, 2007

NB Southern Railway - 2317 Eastbound

It was a nice sunny day today I thought I would chase the eastbound. I left Saint John around 12:30. I never really know what time the train is due into McAdam, so I take the older roads located close to the rail line. I arrived at my destination at 1:55pm. I usually stop where Rte 645 turns into a dirt road at Vespra. This is west of Tracy. I waited for over an hour. So I thought I would take a pic of something... crossing lights work. I really thought I wasn't going to see a train today. At 3:25pm I finally decided to leave after no sign of the train. Until.. I slowly drove over the crossing I was located by. I saw headlights! Finally the eastbound was coming. I was really starting to loose day light by this time.



I thought I would try a shot as the train enters Fredericton Junction at 3:40pm. I like this spot because of the angle with the rest of the train. Unfortunately it was back lit. But the sun lit up the rest of the train nicely.

At 3:50pm the setting sun was making for some good lighting for locations like this one in Blissville. Today's train consisted of sister GP38s #2317 & 2318 and 61 cars.

4:10pm rolling through Clarendon.


And finally Grand Bay at 4:36pm. Sunlight glared off the nicely painted GP38s as they round the curve. I shot at two locations other than shown. At Rte 7 crossing in Welsford and in Ketepec just outside the Dever Rd Yard limits. They both had poor lighting and the shots weren't the best. The train arrived in Saint John at 5pm.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

NBSR SW9 #3703 Update


Steve Boyko has heard that #3703 is going to be getting a new paint job, some new parts and a cab overhaul. I have to say I'm glad to hear this. I have liked the SW9s since NB Southern purchased them. I will definitely update about this in the future.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

CN and NBSR sightings Nov 6/07



This morning I was driving Saint John Transit's East/West route and I made quite a few trips through Rothesay Avenue. Anytime I travel that way my eyes are always on the look out for trains in the Island Yard. The first thing I noticed was a new CN unit SD70 #8819. The fresh paint job made it stand out quite nicely. As I drove by Brett Chev Olds on Rothesay Ave I realized I could get a nice picture from the parking lot of Brett's. I was working a split shift today so I wanted to get a pic of the new locomotive before it left for Moncton. I finally got out to Brett's to get my photo and when I drove into the parking lot the shot of the locomotive changed. A tank trailer had been parked beside #8819 ruining the shot. So I took two photos anyway, one of the nose and just a wide shot. While taking the photos of #8819 I also noticed a bit of a sad sight. NBSR SW9 #3703 was sitting outside the Island Yard shop all by itself. It looks to be that it might be retired. Although I'm not 100% sure on that but it just doesn't look good. The headlight bulbs are removed. It appears to have some of the glass removed. I have a video of #3703 along with #2610 working the Dever Rd Yard on Aug 14/07. So I would say it was parked shortly after. If anyone has any idea the story of what's to come for this engine I would love to hear it. I will try my best to find out.
It used to be if someone was rail fanning NB Southern in Saint John they would always see the two SW9s #3702-3703 working hard together. I often heard on the scanner the NBSR employees calling the little engines "Huff & Puff." Here are a couple of more pics of #3703 working with it's mate #3702.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

NB Southern Railway - CN Transfer Oct 28

Today I thought I would try something new. I like searching for new shots to make photographing a little less repetitive. For today's video I though I would try the rock cut and curve just east of the Reversing Falls Bridge. I have shot from that location before from the opposite side and with a eastbound train. I think the rock face makes a nice background. At 11:45am the 4 locos GP38s #2610&2319, GP9 #3701 and SW9 #3702 roll past the former VIA Station on the way to the Island Yard.
The bottom photo shows the locos approaching their cut of cars from the CN train #406 that had arrived about a half hour earlier from Moncton. The NBSR crew had to make a shunt to remove two packs of container cars from the train. The transfer had 33 cars. In the video titling I made a mistake and put 32 cars.. oops! In was almost an hour before the train made the climb to Reversing Falls. The crew was having problems with GP38 #2610. They had alarms going off so they cut the engine out and only used the remaining 3 loco's power.
At 12:50pm 2610 leads the train around the curve and across Douglas Avenue. I think it turned out to be a good location.



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Thursday, October 18, 2007

NB Southern Railway - Passenger Excursion

Being off on Thursdays can have some advantages. I was sitting at home when I heard some chatter on NBSRs main line channel. There was track crew working around mile 16 and whoever was speaking was on his was out towards the work crew. The thing I didn't notice was that it was a passenger excursion calling the crew. A short time later the Dever Rd yard planner spoke on the scanner and mentioned there was "blue" going by his window. There was an excusion train yesterday so I was pretty certain another was going out today. I set out to find the train! I finally caught up with the Welsford bound train, led by GP38 2610, at Nerepis. So I kept driving to catch the trains arrival at Welsford.
I set up just west of the Rte 7 crossing for my first shot. The train rolled by at 11:12am. I then set up a different angle to catch the run around of the locomotive. Once that was done I moved to the Dept Of Transportation garage driveway, just east of Rt 7.

At 11:45 they left Welsford bound for Saint John. My next two locations were Nerepis and Westfield, both have nice S curves.
They make for some nice shots. The train was traveling at a reduced speed so I could keep a good pace in front of it.

At 12:14pm the train rolled through Grand Bay. When I left this location I decided I would get one more along the Westfield Rd in Morna and then a shot in Saint John. At 12:24 they rolled through a sharp curve in Morna. I couldn't decide where to shoot in Saint John. I had abit of time as they slowly went through the Dever Rd Yard. So I checked out by the Reversing Falls bridge and then I changed my mind and went close to Harbour Station, which is their final destination. I picked a spot along Harbour Passage which is located just west of Harbour Station beside the rail line. At 1pm the passenger train rolls past Harbour Passage.

This was my final shot and I headed home. Enjoy the video!



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Tuesday, October 9, 2007

NB Southern Railway - CN Transfer Oct 7/07

On most Sundays NBSR usually hauls a container transfer from the Island Yard to the Port of Saint John on the west side of the city. I was at home when I heard the horn on the CN caboose #79624. This meant NBSR was backing down into the Port of SJ. I watched from my house as they backed a small container train down. After they were done and came back out from the container port, I heard the Yard master call on the scanner saying the Saint John bound CN train #406 arrived with more containers for the Port. That meant there would be two transfers today. I packed up the car and headed out to see what I could find. When I left my house I drove through Simms Corner to see the CN caboose sitting behind Moosehead Breweries. I proceeded to the entrance of the Island Yard. I couldn't see any containers. So I left and went down Rothesay Ave. Once I got to the east end of the Island Yard I then noticed that CN #406 had arrived into Saint John. They were waiting for yard crews to make room for the long train. I went to Station St. to sit and wait. When I had arrived at the old VIA station 3 NBSR units were waiting to enter the Island Yard. NBSR 9801, 3701, 2610 were the units. Once the CN units pulled the #406 through the Island Yard they dropped the train so NBSR could grab the 36 container cars from the head of the train. At this point I went to get ready for taping. I chose the site of the old hospital Centracare. It has a commanding view of the Reversing Falls plus a good view of the bridge. It was really windy at this location. The wind was coming directly down the river. At 11:05am the train crossed the bridge. I then proceeded to Sea Street on the west side for my next shot. This street is located at the west end of the the old Bay Shore Yard. From here I could get a good shot of the train backing down the grade before the yard. At 11:24am the train now with CN caboose #79624 in the lead crossed Sea Street. Another good chase!


To see the video click this link:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSX9RTULotU

Thursday, October 4, 2007

NB Southern Railway Eastbound Oct 3/07

On Wednesday Oct 3rd I had the day off from work so I decided to head for McAdam. As I was getting close to McAdam on Rte 630 I turned my scanner on to hear a call being made to the RTC. It came through quite scratchy so I couldn't hear what was being said. I hightailed it the rest of the way just so I could make sure if it was the eastbound or not. When I arrived at the station at approx 1:20pm there was no train in sight so I headed toward the main road crossing east of the station. That's when I noticed a flat car rolling by some trees. It was attached to a small crane that was doing some maintenance in the yard. So I turned around and went up by the station to sit and wait. I had noticed the rails were rusty by the station so I knew the train hadn't been there. It was approximately 20 mins when I noticed a few NBSR employees come down to the station from the bunk house. That's the sign of a train arrival. I set up on the main road side of the station to catch the train coming in. This is the side they use to break the train to add or remove cars from the train. They removed some boxcars and added some empty gypsum cars. I waited for the call to the RTC for clearance then I headed out of McAdam. I had never seen the Rte 635 crossing in Prince William before so I decided to leave so I could make sure I made it to there before the train. I wasn't there 3 mins and I heard it coming down the long straight stretch. At approximately 2:40pm the train rolled through. Then it was off to Harvey. I wanted to beat the train there so I could get a good start going through the dirt road through Rooth. I made it to Harvey in good time. There was a signal maintainer working at the crossing in Harvey but no train. I thought I was having some good luck. Until I got about 2km away from the start of the dirt road. There is a hot box detector at the start of the dirt road. It came on the scanner saying they had no alarms. Meaning the whole train had rolled by and they had a good start through Rooth. I never slacked off going through the dirt road. I have to say it was the fastest I've ever gone through there but I wasn't letting the train get away from me. Finally by the time I reached the grade crossing at the east end of the dirt road I had caught up with the tail end of the train. I managed to get ahead of the train at Tracy but I wanted to tape the train coming into Fredericton Junction for a change. Plus it gave my wife Christina a break from sitting in the car. At approximately 3:25pm the train rolled through. I tried to beat the train to the Blissville Crossing on Rte 101 but I got stuck behind two school buses. I passed one and got between them. The one in front of me stopped for the Rte 101 crossing and just as they did the crossing lights came on. No chance for taping there. So I decided my next spot would be at Rte 7 crossing in Welsford. I like this spot because if I shoot from the driveway of the goverment garage I can get going on Rte 7 towards Grandbay without getting caught in the traffic held up by the train. At approx 4:05pm the train rolled through. As I got closer to Saint John I could see the fog coming farther inland. I didn't really want to shoot any foggy shots so I made Westfield Beach my last shot. A nice overhead shot was what I had in mind. I took it from the bridge on Rte 102 that goes over the rail line. At approx 4:20pm the train rolled by. That was my last shot for the day. The train consisted of NBSR GP38s - 9802,2612,2317,2318 and had 59 cars. I made a 7 min video of the chase that I also posted on YouTube. It took about 5hours to do the chase in total but it was worth it in my eyes. Another great chase!

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