Show me an example Saintjohnrailfan's Ultimate Adventures: August 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Matt's Manic McGivney Moncton Marathon

Dave(nbsrfan) and I decided that Sunday would be a great day to head up to McGivney to catch a few trains in action. It actually turned out to be a great day! We left Saint John at around 3am(just when people were getting home from the bars). We arrived in McGivney at around 5am. When we got there, the east facing signals were red over red. I decided to choose my spots for my videos, since it was still dark, and I had time to kill. At around 5:45am, the signal changed to green over red, which meant that a westbound train was on the track, and heading our way! We waited, which I didn't mind, because the longer we had to wait, the brighter it got outside. About an hour later, I could see the lights come around the corner, and at 6:45am, CN 121 blased westbound with 137 container cars, and a killer horn!

Our first train of the day, and it wasn't even 7am yet! We did not have to wait too much longer. At around 7:50am, I noticed that the signal changed to red over yellow. What this meant is that there was another westbound train on the track, and it would have to take the siding here in McGivney! I thought that was great, since it would be a 2 for 1 train meet! At around 8:40am, CN 305 with 8837 as the lead engine made it's way to McGivney at a snails pace, and entered the siding. I also caught my eyes on first live DPU, which was also great!

I had no idea which train was on the other side waiting to pass 305. I was amazed that it was CN 308, since 308 does not pass McGivney until well into the afternoon. Once the train went into the siding, CN 308 came blasting through with yet another great engine, 8846!

So, we had already caught 3 trains, and it wasn't even 9am yet. We decided that since there would only be one more train on that line that day(CN 473), it would be good to head into Moncton for the rest of the day, and that's what we did. We had gotten into Moncton around noon, so I knew that CN 407 and VIA 614 would be shortly along. Dave and I decided to head over to Painsec Junction, which is just on the east side of the city. We were there for roughly an hour. We caught a train making its way eastbound. Dave and I assumed that it was VIA. However the engine didn't look right. I realized that it was CN 534, doing a local run. Once 534 passed, I looked into the horizon and saw that CN 407 had taken the siding. My guess was that it was waiting for VIA to pass before heading into Moncton. Sure enough, I was right. VIA 614 came barrelling by, and shortly after, 407 took the mainline. I was excited...two train meets in one day! Here the video of the meetup of the 3 trains:

After this, we decided to venture into Moncton to the Gort Yard, since we had a few hours to kill. Once there, we saw some engines shunting cars around. Once we made our way to the Delong Drive overpass, we bumped into Wendell Lemon. He informed us that CN 536 was just shortly coming around the corner. It was returning from the Irving Plant up in Chipman, NB. Here's the video of the shunting and 536:

Wendell informed us that VIA 615 was just arriving into the station. CN 534(the one we caught earlier) was on it's way back, and waiting for VIA to leave the station before it came back to the yard. We went down to Marsh Junction. We were not there long. About 20 minutes later, VIA 615 came along, and 5 minutes later, CN 534 passed by:

We decided to stay in the city to wait for CN 408 to leave east for Halifax. I knew that it would be leaving at a decent time, since 308 and 405 were back so early. We decided to stick around Marsh Junction to catch 408. Finally, at around 8:30pm, CN 408 passed by hauling 79 cars, heading towards Halifax.

Well, the day was finally over! 16 hours later, and 11 trains later, we decided to head back to Saint John. Also, just as we were leaving Moncton, we heard on the scanner that CN 406 was also leaving for Saint John around the same time we were. However, since it was getting dark and we were getting tired, that was it for railfanning today! Definately worth the trip!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Matt's Moncton Trip - The Full Story

So, I decided to venture up to Moncton on Monday for another day railfanning trip. The day started really well. I managed to get to Moncton at 6:30am..nice and early. I decided to begin my day at Berry Mills, just west of Moncton. At around 7:40am, CN 305 rolled along with a large load:

Shortly there after, at around 9:05am, CN 473 came along hauling 26 cars(I think):

Now, this is where the day kind of got bad. At around 10:30am, I decided to venture over to Memramcook, to try to catch the VIA 614 and CN 407. I parked along the road, so I could see the Moncton facing signal, as I was expecting the VIA train to be rolling along first. Well, apparently it didn't. CN 407 decided to cross my path first. CN 407 was coming from Halifax heading towards Moncton. By the time I was able to get my camera out and ready, I missed quite a bit of the train:

So CN 407 passed at around noon. After that, I decided to venture down to Salisburn to try to catch CN 405 returning from Saint John. I had to wait until around 2:30ish, but then 405 made it's way through at around 2:40pm. The location is Delong Drive, on the other side of the yard. I think it's a great location, becausae you can get a great shot of the train for about 5 or 6 kilometers up the track. Here's the video:

Finally, I decided to make my way to Painsec Junction. I knew the VIA wouldn't be in that area until around 5pm, so I had a few hours to kill. Finally, at around 5pm, VIA 615 rolled by at full speed, it seemed:

Unfortunately, that was the end of my train catching for the day. I hung around Moncton until 9:30pm. Unfortunately, CN 408 was late leaving, so I didn't get to catch it. So I was disappointed that I missed half of 407 and all of 408. I guess seeing 5 trains is better than none at all....


Moncton Monday

I made a day trip to Moncton to do some railfanning. I managed to catch 5 trains. I'll post the videos up later on today.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Everyday is Saturday Night, But I Can't Wait For Sunday Morning....

I was up early today in the attempts to get a video of 406 and 405.

I arrived at Park Drive around 6am. Dave(nbsrfan) had decided that he would like to join me in the catch of 406 & 405. I had mentioned to him about a few locations on Saturday, but I guess we had our signals crossed, as he arrived at 6am, but was sitting at the Rothesay Park road crossing a few km up the road. After no sign of him, I gave him a call around 7am, and we got everything straigned out, so Dave made his way up to Park Drive. About an hour and a half later, and figuring out locations which to shoot at, CN 406 rolled by at around 8:20am.

Of course, here's the video:

After this, Dave and I headed back into Saint John to see what was going on. We were not in the city very long, as CN was looking at making a quick turnaround, and a quick one they did. At around 10:30am, CN 405 made it's way past the Rothesay Station with 31 cars, and engine 5736 ridin' shotgun with 2642 right behind it.

The video:

Well, that was everything for today.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Long Train Runnin'

Here is a video of CN 405 which I shot yesterday afternoon out in Rothesay, near the old train station. I had to wait about an hour and a half for this one. I was in Saint John earlier in the morning, and I sort of knew the pace that CN was on.

Here it is, with 183 cars...second longest that I've seen on 405.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008


Well, I'm excited. I managed to get my first accepted video on

You can check it out here:

Now, I just need to work on

Bad Luck

Later on this morning, I'm going to try to head into Saint John to catch CN leaving Saint John. I wanted to do it yesterday, but bad luck prevented me from doing so.

Well, yesterday at around 12:30pm, I was sitting watching TV, and talking a little bit on Facebook. At 1pm, I was going to head over to Rothesay station to wait for CN to leave. Well, just as I thought about doing that, I could hear 405 blowing for a crossing here in Rothesay. Well, that plan was out. My next idea was to try to catch 406 coming back at night, since I've never gotten a night video of CN. I know that from what I've heard, 406 does not usually roll by Rothesay until between midnight and 2am. As the night went on, I was getting tired, so I decided to scrap that idea. I was still awake at 11:30pm...and guess what I could hear in the clear of the night? Of course, 406 was blowing for a crossing here in Rothesay. Perhaps the holiday was the reason why both trains came around earlier than usual.

So, alas, to my discovery, not only was it a holiday, it was also a bad day for railfanning. Hopefully I"ll have better luck tomorrow.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Busy Sunday

On Sunday, I was awake at 5:30am and wanted to see if CN 406 was back in Saint John or not. Last weekend, Dave(nbsrfan) and I went out at 6:30am to catch 406, but the train was already back. That was the first time in 6 catches that 406 was back that early for a Sunday. So I drove into Saint John at 5:30am. 406 was not back, so I drove back out to the Rothesay Station and waited, with an extra large coffee in hand.

At around 7:40am, CN 406 rolled by with 109 cars:

I followed it back into Saint John. They were doing a quick turnaround, which was good. So, once CN 405 left Saint John, I went out to Hampton, and decided to catch it there.

At around 10:30am, CN 405 rolled by Hampton with 24 cars.

After that, I went home and tried to finish unpacking!