Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Unit From Each of North America's Major Class 1's on Video

Well, I've done it. Caught a unit from each of North America's major class 1 railways. And to celebrate, I will now share the very first video I caught of each.

Let's begin with CN as they were the first class 1 I ever caught on video.

On May 23, 2012 I caught CN 407 at Folly Lake, Nova Scotia. This train was being lead by CN 2438, and two other units, one of which was an IC unit. At the time I had just started railfanning, so numbers weren't overly important to me. Still not a bad catch, but we've come a long way quality wise since then!

Location of CN Catch

Next up was CP.

I caught my first CP train at Bedell, Ontario on August 28, 2012 with CP 8842 as the lone power for an eastbound. quality still wasn't my main focus at the time.

Location of CP Catch. Please excuse the partial side bar.

It was almost two years before I caught the next class 1, and it came in the form of BNSF 5766. Catching this unit where I did was pretty rare in that foreign power does not visit Nova Scotia very often. In the below video we see the unit trailing on CN 121 out of Halifax on April 23, 2014. I caught 121 at Bedford, and Truro being lead by CN 8910, BNSF 5766, CN 2651, and 7083.

Quality has improved greatly in this one, but because 121 leaves later in the evening the shots are after dark. Luckily for me, I am fairly good at finding well lit areas to shoot in!

Location of firrst BNSF Catch

The summer of 2014 I moved to Ottawa, Ontario after finishing university in Nova Scotia. This is when I caught the next unit on a CN crude oil train.

Here we see CN 2565 east leading a fast moving train near Ingleside, about an hour or so south of Ottawa on CN's Kingston Sub. Behind 2565 were NS 6644, and BNSF 5837! Another great lashup, which carried my first NS unit, and third BNSF.

Location of NS Catch

I didn't catch a CSX unit until making a fall trip to Syracuse, New York in 2014.

On the evening of October 5, 2015 I caught my first CSX train at Jordan, NY about 20 minutes west of Syracuse. This train was lead by CSX 7587, 5309, and 2643 on the CSX Rochester Sub.

Also of note is that at this point I had started my new channel name since I was no longer living in Nova Scotia.

Location of CSX Catch

Back in Ontario, the next class 1 was Union Pacific. In the below video, UP 8216 trails on CP train 143 heading west past Bedell. The power for this train was CP 8578, UP 8216, and CP 5966.

Location of UP Catch

The next one was a bit of a hassle to catch! Ferromex 4657 had rolled into Montreal the day prior (Jan 19, 2015) and I knew it was going to head back west the next day. Thinking that I had lots of time to get from Ottawa to Finch to make the catch, I took my time, but unfortunately for me I missed them by about five minutes! Refusing to except that I had missed them, I got on the road and tried to get ahead of them. An hour later I finally accomplished that, and grabbed two shots of them near Perth.

Location of FXE Catch

Finally, 8 months later I caught the last class 1 on the list, Kansas City Southern. At this point I had seen two other KCS units, but didn't have a camera with me at those times. This one didn't come easy either.

As we drove south on highway 6 out of Regina, Saskatchewan we neared the CP Weyburn Sub crossing at Corinne where I spotted a northbound crossing the highway. I quickly noticed a UP leading, and that the second unit was a KCS! Awesome! A quick right onto highway 39, and we were ahead of them by Wilcox. Pulling off at a rural crossing, I did a quick set up as the train approached.

Location of KCS Catch

Catching KCS 4831 marked the end of my attempts to catch all of the Class 1 freight railways of North America.

Also neat for myself to see the places I have been, and how the quality has improved with time. Hopefully the future brings more exciting trips, and catches.