Thursday, 28 June 2018

Throwback Thursday - Train Time at North Bay

On August 19, 1986 FP7Am 1985 was receiving a little TLC at the CN station in North Bay, Ontario.
By Peter Mumby
Ontario Northland Railway went out of the way to ensure that railfans and patrons could identify its flagship passenger train, the "Northland."  This train had travelled from Cochrane to North Bay via the ONR Ramore and Temagami Subdivisions.  Upon arrival at North Bay the train backed onto the North Bay/Capreol segment of the Newmarket Sub in order to access the CN station. With its station work complete the train will return to the CN/ONR junction and head south on CN trackage towards its eventual terminus at Toronto Union station. 

ONR 1985 was an FP7Am, originally built by GMD in 1953 as FP7A number 1518.  It had been modified to replace one of the original TEE train power cars.  It now incorporated an alternator for auxiliary coach power, and was semi-permanently coupled to a 3-car TEE trainset.  In this August 1986 view the unit is receiving a little individual attention from ONR personnel prior to resuming its journey.

Quite a bit has changed since this photo was taken.  ONR subsequently built a combination train/bus depot on its own line, as CN made the decision to abandon the mp 227 - 311 portion of the Newmarket Subdivision with the exception of a small segment in the Capreol yard.  Now this relatively new facility serves bus passengers only, as the Northlander has been relegated to the history books.  The only remaining ONR passenger train is the Polar Bear Express which operates between Cochrane and Moosonee.

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