Monday, July 21, 2008

Train Trip Report 2

another trip to trichy.

this time it was to be made in two-and-half days notice. however, i was lucky to get a reservation on 2605 Pallavan Express from MS to TPJ on 19th july. being sunday night, i couldnt get any train reservation for my return journey for 20th night. i was still high on hopes to find some train connection for my return, even an afternooon train was not available. Thanks to pressure at home, i m not allowed travel un-reserved and hence was madly looking for some train connection. I couldnt even find a passenger train. I was hoping to find some train connection after reaching trichy.

I reached Madras Egmore station on 19th july at 14:55 for the 15:30 2605 pallavan express. The 2636 vaigai express had just arrived and passengers were finding it tough to move out of Pf5 thro the two narrow FoBs. there was a lot of confusion and crowds shouting as passengers from 2636 were coming out and passengers for 2605 were going towards the Pf. The luggage each person carried adding to the problems. It needed a few women PCs to come to the site and regulate movement in lines.

Pf 4 had 6125 MS - JU express. I couldnt go thro' the crowds to the North end of MS station to see the power on 2636 or 6125. my compartment D9 being almost near the south end of MS station made sure i reached the seat at 15:15 and found the compartment still not even 30% full. 6125 departed on time at 15:15 pm. There were ppl coming in and by departure time, the compartment was fully and the unreserved
passengers standing the aisles. Our power was ED WAP4 22268 in traditional WAP4-red livery. we started on time. Pf 3 had MS-KCG express with ED WDM2 16853 attached to it. There were empty rakes of other evening trains and the loco sidings had quite a few WDMs and WAMs. The rake of 2605 was in this order. E-SLR-UR-UR-D12 to
D5-PS1-Pantry-D4 to D1-C2-C1-UR-UR-SLR. The C2 coach was in the green and yellow livery while the rest of the train was in the usual blue. Some of its window panes had cracks which were sealed with tapes and stickers.

At the gopalswamy nagar yard, empty rake of 7643 Circar express was waiting behind AJJ WAM4 20601, which in all probability would be heading the train in the evening. There was TNP WDM7 11015 and a few WDS4Bs in the sidings in the yard. also was the empty rake of 2631/32 nellai express and that of the recently shifted to Madras division 113/114 TBM-VM passenger.

Though i wasnt expecting many crossings, i stuck my window seat and occasionally went to the door to see if there is anything that i should not miss. We pulled into tambaram on time. on the adjacent platform, was another rake of 113/114 with AJJ WAP4 22693 heading towards VM. We stopped at CGL for a moment and i got a good view of the old loco shed and its water tanks etc. Till here are the EMU limits and one could see island platforms and passengers waiting on them. We had a slow run-through at Tindivanam. This station might soon become a junction, once the new line from tindivanam to nagari is cleared. Between CGL and VM we had just two crossings first was PDY-TPTY passenger with ED WDM2 17750 and the second was AJJ WAM4 21297 with a passenger train. i would guess this could be 6128 GUV-MS express. We pulled into Villupuram on time. The goods yard had WAG5 23621 and some goods rakes. couldnt see many other passenger train rakes of locos in sight. At VM, our loco gave way for GOC WDP3A 15518. Quite a brisk loco, this was and gave pleasing horn. I have always
enjoyed running behind diesels for the horn and the sounds they make, which i find very soothing much in contrast to the electrics. Sooner than later, the electrics would go beyond VM till Ariyalur, ALU. the electrification is complete till ALU is waiting necessary clearances.

After VM, the PDY branch line branched off to the left while the underconversion VM - CDM - MV main line gave us company for a while before hearding leftwards. Stations after this were all the usual one run through, one loop two platform stations, all of them deserted and just a couple of railway staff waving their green flags. The catering staff on 2605 had quite a variety and the aroma was good. There was dal poli, biriyani(veg, chicken & mutton), cutlets, dal vadas, masala dosa and plantain bajjis making the rounds other than the packed chips and biscuits and water. Though the aroma was very inviting, i wasnt hungry enough to try any of them.

We reached VRI on time, with the TPJ-CUPJ passenger waiting on the adjacent platform behind ED WDM2 16850. There werent many other crossings in this section either. GOC twins WDM2 16864(leading) and 18419 went past us with an unknown train. We pulled into TPJ right on time into Pf1 after the one minute stoppings at ALU, LLI, SRGM and GOC. At TPJ station, there were ED WDM2 twins 16462 and 16479 with a rake of coal leaving from Pf 4 as soon as we pulled in. Pf 2 had TPJ-RMM passenger with ED WDM2 16480. Pf1A had the rake of TPJ-ED-JTJ passenger with ED WDM2 17584 in blue and white livery. As i was about leave the station, 1044 MDU-LTT express pulled into Pf4 being KJM WDG3A 13331.

My hopes for finding a train back on sunday were not answered yet. On sunday again, i was back at the station at 2 pm with hopes of finding some train, atleast a passenger for some distance and then some connecting train, but i couldnt find any. however made some interesting spottings. As i entered the platforms after taking the
platform ticket, announcements were made for 6127 MS-GUV express to arrive on Pf3. Pf 4 had the 826A MV-TEN passenger waiting behind ED baldie WDM3A 14055 (ACD Fitted). Pf 1A had TPJ-ED-JTJ passenger's rake with ED WDM2 16564 at the helm. ED WDM2 18554 was in the pit line between PFs 1 & 2. The pit lines behind Pf1A had GTL WDM3A 14039 in a blue-yellow-grey livery and ERS WDM3A 14076 and GOC WDS6 36013. 6127
arrived behind GOC WDM2 twins 17258 and 17699. As 6127 was arriving, a passenger from Palghat Town also arrived on Pf2 behind ED WDM2 17703 unannounced. As soon as this passenger arrived, the leading loco got itself detached. and 18554 ran to the sidings to come back and get attached to the train at the GOC end of the station. Announcements were being made for arrival of 6128 on Pf1 and 6127 left at 14:15 or
so. As i walked up and down the Pf1, i noticed that another GOC loco was also making its way towards the passenger on Pf2. I immediately walked down to find that WDP3A 15518 (which had pulled 2605 the previous day) was also getting attached to the train which was now re-boarded as the TPJ-CUPJ passenger. The WDP3A and WDM2 were both alive and the men were also seen connecting some wires in between them.

also seen at the far end of the pic is 16564. There is work for the extention of the shelter at TPJ platforms and also Pfs 5,6 are being converted to BG to facilitate better handling of the traffic. at 14:30 6128 pulled in behind the familiar combo of 16864 and 18419. And i left the station to go and book tickets on bus.

The bus journey had its own problems with the rains delaying departure and some vacuum lines started leaking and hence the bus started about 2 hours behind schedule. i got down at tambaram and took an EMU. While our bus was doing the Chingleput - Tambaram stretch, a passenger train went past us behind WAM4 20671. The railway line and road were quite close that i could spot this. At TBM station at 8 am, 2693 Pearlcity express pulled in behind ED WDM3A 14126. I wanted to see the out-going 6127 express. however, there was no sign of it, till i got down at
Guindy at 8:30 am. i couldnt wait more and headed homewards.

my god!!!! how do u find time to do all this and more....
a "train" report indeed!!!:)
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