KevinT

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From: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/The_Canadian

"Trains returning to Vancouver would leave Union Station either from the East as it came in from (if turned around prior), or from the West. In the latter case, the train would then proceed North along the Newmarket Subdivision, shared by GO Transit's Barrie line. This subdivision is a portion of a former route for the transcontinental line; however, the train only continues as far as Snyder Diamond in Vaughan. There it would then proceed Eastbound along the York Subdivision towards Thornhill to meet up with the Bala Subdivision at Doncaster Diamond and from there continue Northwest leaving the Greater Toronto Area towards Washago and eventually Vancouver."

That was my guess, but that 'diamond' in Vaughan (actually an overpass) doesn't allow a northbound train to switch directly eastbound. They'd have to pass that diamond, back themselves down the lead onto the York sub, then continue eastbound:

CanadianMoves.png


Which of course must be exactly what they're doing, but man, what a painful move for a passenger train...
 
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Krypto98

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That was my guess, but that 'diamond' in Vaughan (actually an overpass) doesn't allow a northbound train to switch directly eastbound. They'd have to pass that diamond, back down the lead onto the York sub, then continue eastbound:

View attachment 429095

Which of course must be exactly what they're doing, but man, what a painful move for a passenger train...
It would be nice if the Newmarket Sub still had the section between Barrie and Washago... would probably save a little time of freight traffic too since usually VIA has to move over for the hottest intermodals...
 

KevinT

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I suppose in theory they could drive it into the Mac yard and loop it there too. That would also be interesting...

1664221364247.png
 

timio

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Reminds me of the Ocean. Into Charny then back to the main line. Into Matapedia; front of train split off and went to Gaspe (when it was still a thing) then two engines return back to the front of the train to keep pulling to Halifax. Very confusing sight to see first thing in the morning when not expecting it.
 

smallspy

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That was my guess, but that 'diamond' in Vaughan (actually an overpass) doesn't allow a northbound train to switch directly eastbound. They'd have to pass that diamond, back down the lead onto the York sub, then continue eastbound:

View attachment 429095

Which of course must be exactly what they're doing, but man, what a painful move for a passenger train...
This is exactly what they do. All told, the move takes about 15 minutes.

And considering that the first station stop - Washago - isn't for about 2 and a half hours after departure, it really doesn't end up being that onerous in the grand scheme of things.

Dan
 

lenaitch

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It would be nice if the Newmarket Sub still had the section between Barrie and Washago... would probably save a little time of freight traffic too since usually VIA has to move over for the hottest intermodals...
That ship, as they say, has long since sailed. CN had two lines going to the same place. The Newmarket sub was 10 miles longer, didn't have CTC (I don't think) and ran through several built-up areas which, from a freight perspective, only meant slower. I'm not sure how keeping the Newmarket sub would have aided freight times; they always have priority.
 

Garuda

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Yeah, I think as far as introductions to Toronto go, you can't beat the Don Valley. Easily the most picturesque part of the city.

I can think of far worse rail corridors to introduce tourists to Toronto (the Galt subdivision which the Milton GO line runs on, through Mississauga, is the bleakest rail line I have ever had the misfortune of clapping my eyes on).
Agreed. Especially this time of year, the Don Valley is gorgeous. But when I get a chance next year I want to ride in the dome car hurting my neck to catch one last glimpse of downtown Toronto.
That was my guess, but that 'diamond' in Vaughan (actually an overpass) doesn't allow a northbound train to switch directly eastbound. They'd have to pass that diamond, back down the lead onto the York sub, then continue eastbound:

View attachment 429095

Which of course must be exactly what they're doing, but man, what a painful move for a passenger train...
When I took the Canadian I made sure I was in the last dome car for this exact reason. I had to see it. It was just me and the engineer as he radioed to the locomotive while reversing. Didn't feel special or anything and very underwhelming.

It was also 3am and freezing cold in the middle of winter.
 

Krypto98

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That ship, as they say, has long since sailed. CN had two lines going to the same place. The Newmarket sub was 10 miles longer, didn't have CTC (I don't think) and ran through several built-up areas which, from a freight perspective, only meant slower. I'm not sure how keeping the Newmarket sub would have aided freight times; they always have priority.
Correct... in fact to this day the Newmarket North sub is still OCS...
 

Krypto98

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^I suspect that by “Newmarket North” @Krypto98 was referring to Washago to North Bay.

(Washago to Gravenhurst was CTC until a few years ago)

- Paul
Internally we've referred to it as Newmarket North for the CN owned section between washago and North bay... and Newmarket South for the Metrolinx owned part between mile 3.0 Parkdale and Barrie...
 

dowlingm

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Canadian wouldn’t have to take the long way around if it was run often enough to have shorter train lengths which fit in available wyes. If only an east facing connection to Obico could be done without making a mess of Willowbrook’s approach trackage
 

IRT_BMT_IND

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Correct... in fact to this day the Newmarket North sub is still OCS...
The Newmarket sub used to have block signals (at least, not sure if full CTC) to at least Gravenhurst until sometime in the early 2010s. The signals can clearly be seen on old Google Street View imagery of the ONR station in Gravenhurst, and a decommissioned signal (the head is turned away from the track) can clearly be seen from the southbound lanes on Highway 11 just outside Gravenhurst. I assume the signals were decommissioned at least partly due to the elimination of the Northlander, I think there's only one scheduled through train on this line in each direction (there might still be one or two switchers on parts of it too) so I'm not even sure how common meets are anymore.
 

lenaitch

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The Newmarket sub used to have block signals (at least, not sure if full CTC) to at least Gravenhurst until sometime in the early 2010s. The signals can clearly be seen on old Google Street View imagery of the ONR station in Gravenhurst, and a decommissioned signal (the head is turned away from the track) can clearly be seen from the southbound lanes on Highway 11 just outside Gravenhurst. I assume the signals were decommissioned at least partly due to the elimination of the Northlander, I think there's only one scheduled through train on this line in each direction (there might still be one or two switchers on parts of it too) so I'm not even sure how common meets are anymore.
There used to be a sign at or near the Gravenhurst station that read "start CTC"/end CTC" (depending on direction). I assume it has be removed - I haven't noticed since the signals went dark).
 

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