Saturday, January 29, 2011

Trainspotting Finse, Norway

The web is great for trainspotting, making accessible unusual venues all over the world. One I discovered and got hooked on during the fall of 2010 is the Finse small station on the Bergensbanen in Norway.

Below the location in Google Maps.

From Wiki, the Bergenbanen was a major engineering feat of the last century linking the capitol Oslo with Bergen on the North Sea coast in the west. The Bergen Line (Norwegian: Bergensbanen), also called the Bergen Railway, is a 371 kilometres (231 mi) standard gauge railway line between Bergen and Hønefoss, Norway.[1] The name is often applied for the entire route from Bergen via Drammen to Oslo, where the passenger trains go, a distance of 496 kilometres (308 mi).[7] It is the highest mainline railway line in Northern Europe,[8] crossing the Hardangervidda plateau at 1,237 metres (4,058 ft) above sea level.[6].

Despite its remoteness, Finse is easily accessible and enjoyable from the comfort of ones home via the webcam that provides 24/7 real time video of good quality. The webcam can be accessed by clicking on the screengrab below. Lots of people watching too given the high traffic due to this area being a cross-country skiing mecca. An article in the Telegraph provides a lot more information about the region from a tourist standpoint. LOTS going on there including conferences....[Edit: Apparently the Hoth scenes in the 2nd Star Wars flick, the real ones not the computerized ones, were filmed in the area. Makes sense...]

Finse Stasjon webcam page. Clock at bottom left counts down until departure of next passenger train. They don't stick around long. Crossing lights flash slowly (esp. when dark) increasing in frequency when a train is heading towards the station. Trains to Oslo appear from "tunnel" (man-made to protect turnouts...), trains to Bergen from the lower right.

The line is electrified and features a nice variety of modern stock, including the futuristic Class 73 emus.Also seen are various MOW trains, including plows, although the trains themselves seem to be doing most of the work and trains are seldom late, even in the worst weather. Below some images of the variety.

Class El 18 of the NSB on a dreary winter's day and heading towards Bergen.
Class El 18 of the NSB on a beautiful winter's day and heading towards Oslo.
Class 73 EMU, run as 4-car and 2x 4-car consists.
Flashes from the catenary of the night train to Oslo during a blinding blizzard. The train was on time...
CargoNet El 17
Class CE 119 of CargoNet, the Bombardier TRAXX (DB Class 185...)
Unloading the weekly supply train. There are no roads to this area...
Various MOW trains.
JBV (JernBaneVerket, the Norwegian National Rail Administration) Di3a NoHAB diesel

Can't wait until the longer days of spring and summer,
nevermind some nicer weather.


Monday, January 17, 2011

Rheingold, THE TEE (DB Class 103)

Nice footage of the Rheingold pulled by a BR 103 between Emmerich on the Dutch/German border down to Karlsruhe.

Info zum Film hier.

Here a film about the E 03s/103s construction

and another with lots of great shots.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Far From Home – Canadian Pacific in Syracuse

Happened by the tracks at the West end of the East Syracuse Yard and noticed this Canadian Pacific (CP) powered manifest freight. Pulled into the lot and snapped a few shots on my cell. Lead unit is GE ES44AC number 8856. After a minute or two the engines revved up and the train pulled out. Fun to see something more exotic here. The last time I saw CP was when a colleague and I headed down to Binghamton, NY where CP and Norfolk Southern are plentiful. Pictures of that trip are here.