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Saturday, October 12, 2002

02-10-12 CLASSIC PHOTOS: Toronto Trip

Waaaaaay back in October, 2002 I set off on an international journey to visit a friend in Toronto. Now he wasn't a railfan, but I did manage to get in a good deal of railfanning both on the way to and from as well as while in Toronto. Naturally I took Amtrak's Train 63, the Maple Leaf and started my trip in Meriden, CT, which was near where I was attending school at the time. As I went through and re-processed these photos I was struck by how much of an interesting time the early 2000's were for railfanning and lamented how they just missed out on the technological revolution that lay ahead in terms of being able to document things.

While I had a shiny new digital camera, flash memory for it was almost as limiting as rolls of film with each of my two 64MB cards only allowing 96 shots, and on this trip I used every one of them on a trip that could easily generate hundreds of photos on my current gear. Also missing was the ability to take video, even standard def, which again prevented me from capturing what an E60 sounded like to railfan window views on the TTC. Finally without a reliable Wikipedia there was no way to learn that the TTC fleet did in fact have old "H series" cars that I should have sought out.

So you can see all the photos that I did manage to take right here, but you'll just have to imagine all of those that got away.

Like I said before I was stunned by the variety of equipment that was still running around back then, so much of which is now vanished and considered "classic". In this first photo we see a northbound Amtrak Vermonter train approaching the Meriden, CT station on the siding track as foretold by the long since replaced 1990's vintage US&S H-5 small target searchlights displaying an Approach Limited for the move. In what is probably the only example of equipment that has become more common, ex-Metroliner cab car #9643 in partial Phase III paint, leads the way, which is also a thing of the mast as the Vermonter now operates with two diesels. Also note the variety in Amfleet paint, its almost the rainbow era all over again.

In what was certainly a good omen about the trip to come the PV Dover Havrour was tacked on to the rear of the Vermonter, in front of P40 Genesis #808.

Now I'm not going to mention E60's and not show one. Cab of #601 sitting at the platform at Penn Station.

Holy fucking shit, P32AC-DM genesis #706 in PHASE III PAINT!! Wait, why don't the "heritage" P42's look like this o.0

ACMU 1100's in Croton!

The New York State Senate President Joe Bruno Albany-Rensselaer Rail Station was brand new and New York State Senate President Joe Bruno was not yet in jail.

The Albany Amshack and its low level platform canopies were still standing.

P40 #817 would provide the power all the way to Toronto. Yes the P42's were in service and all F40's had been retired, but P40's seemed to be prevalent in the northeast diesel pool. Here #817 backs onto our train to replace the P32AC-DM. You know isn't a dual mode loco supposed to eliminate the need for...POWER CHANGES?!?!?

Waiting on a Medium Clear at CP-291 at the new Syracuse Amtrak station with its high level platform. Our train stopped here briefly to perform a crew change.

Buffalo Central Terminal, which has seen some effort at preservation in the past decade.

 The former CASO line over the Niagara river has already had its rails cut and the old MC style small target searchlight has been turned, but the bridge is still there, covered with anti-terrorist barriers.

My train arrived after dark, but I managed to get this photo of SCOTT ST interlocking, east of Toronto Union Station.

 Main hall of Toronto Union Station.

Brand new Amtrak P42DC #36 sitting under the Toronto trainshed ready to pull out with Train 365, the International...which has since been discontinued.

VIA was sporting really brand new P42DCs as well. Class unit #900.

Union station trainshed with the Royal York hotel in the background.

JOHN ST interlocking at the west end of the station complex.

Amtrak Train #365 The International, departing Toronto Union Station for Chicago.

EMD F59PH #549 pulling into Union Station. These have also been almost completely replaced by newer MPI MP40PH-3C's.

Full width of Toronto Union Station trainshed, including the shed expansion on the end.

Budd heritage first class car #4009 on VIA train 73.

Budd heritage standard class car #4107 on VIA train 73.

VIA F40PH #6408 at the head of VIA train 73.

Toronto Union Station Scott St interlocking during the day.

SCOTT ST interlocking tower which still houses its original GRS Model 5B interlocking machine.

Toronto Union Station train shed with the obligatory shot of the CN Tower.

JOHN ST interlocking with the tower hidden under a pedestrian overpass.

 Scarborough RT train lead by unit #3023 leaving the Kennedy station. The Scarborough RT was the demonstration system for the Intermediate Capacity Transit System that ultimately evolved into the JFK Air Train and other such automated systems. The Mark 1 cars were designed to be fully automated, but the local union complained so the cars were retrofitted with a small drivers cab to reverse the progress of automatic operation. The whole system suffered from a raft of problems because ICTS was developed by the state owned Urban Transportation Development Corporation and the government pressured the TTC to buy it. ICTS eventually evolved into a workable fully automatic system with additional orders from Vancouver and Detroit, but the original Scarborough RT is currently slated for replacement by a more conventional light rail line.

ICTS Mk 1 car #3027 at the Scarborough Centre mall station.

#3027 again at the McCowan terminal.

Class RT car #3000 out on the "main line".

#3014 out on the main line.

T-1 car #5106 arrives at the Warden Station.

Local control interlocking panel at the Warden station tower.

TTC T-1 car #5186 departing the Lawrence station. 

Hawker-Siddeley built H-5 car #5797 waiting in the yard for rush hour.

GT timer signal approaching a station on the Younge Line.

Here's a crumb for all your Bus fans out there. GM Fishbowl bus #8961 at the Downsview transfer station.

Back at Union Station I found Amtrak P40 #814 ready to take me back home.

Here we see a pair of CN SW1200RS units #1285 and 1359. They are either going to or returning from service with Montana RailLink. These 1200hp switchers were equipped with larger fuel tanks and Flexicoil trucks for road switcher service.

CN GP9RM #7018 in the Niagara Falls area.

The famous Whirlpool rapids north of the Whirlpool Rapids Bridge.

Buffalo Central Station again with signal masts for CP-437 in the foreground. 

Passenger concourse at Buffalo Central Station.

CSX B40-8 #5958 hanging out with a CEFX lease SD40-2 #3140 in Buffalo.

Unlike the B40-8 above, B36-7 #5835 has been retired along with all the other -7 GE units not only from CSX, but from all Class 1 railroads in North America. Nose the classic short hood nose which has much more in common with the original U-Boat design than the newer -8 and -9 standard cab GE's. As a warning to railroad equipment buyers everywhere EMD equipment from the same era is still running strong and continuing to be rebuilt. As a rule apples don't fall far from the tree and past performance is the best indication of future performance.

The surviving Tower 30 in Utica, NY.

Night shot on the platform at the New York State Senate President Joe Bruno Albany-Rensselaer Rail Station with the outbound Train 49 on the far track as Train 64 has its engine swapped again.

Well that it is for today. Next week expect some filler about a METRA interlocking tower as I travel up state to go skiing in the Adirondacks and make use of the New York State Senate President Joe Bruno Albany-Rensselaer Rail Station.

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