The 'Ocean'......First Run! (with photos)

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zephyr17

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All the flag stops on the Canadian require the 40 minute notice before train departure. The only difference is there is more than just the station of origin. It must be 40 minutes before departure from Vancouver (eb), Jasper, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Capreol or Toronto (wb).
 
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MikefromCrete

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Let me take that back. I just looked at the latest South Shore schedules and there doesn't seem to be any flag stops.

A quick view of Metra schedules show flag stops are made by notification of conductor or by standing in sight of engineers. No flashing lights.
 

west point

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A light system is going to have problems operating on a max authorized speeds of 79 - 90 MPH. Actually a lead warning would need to be at least a mile away from flag stop station.
 

Marbleski

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Yes.....the end of the Park Car (but a Skyline will probably be added when covid restrictions ease) and the Budd coaches in the photos above are the same as on the Canadian with reversible seats and all recently refurbished. (VIA also has two Ren Coaches in this consist and one is running in reverse)
Are there any lounge cars to hang out in on the Halifax to Montreal route or is one confined to your room for the entire trip?

Is the skyline similar to the upstairs seating area on the Park Car?
 

NS VIA Fan

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Are there any lounge cars to hang out in on the Halifax to Montreal route or is one confined to your room for the entire trip?

Is the skyline similar to the upstairs seating area on the Park Car?
Right now.....you're still confined to your room or coach seat for the duration of the trip but hopefully that will ease later this fall if there's a lifting of covid restrictions.

The Dome in the Skyline is very similar to the Park Car, If one is added to the Ocean...I imagine it will have flip-over seats. The Skyline also has a cafe and lounge

Skyline car | VIA Rail

And there's two Renaissance Lounges but also currently not in use.

(Hey.....I note your Username 'Marbleski' That's a favorite spot of mine for skiing and hopefully I'll get too again this winter)
 

Marbleski

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Right now.....you're still confined to your room or coach seat for the duration of the trip but hopefully that will ease later this fall if there's a lifting of covid restrictions.

The Dome in the Skyline is very similar to the Park Car, If one is added to the Ocean...I imagine it will have flip-over seats. The Skyline also has a cafe and lounge

Skyline car | VIA Rail

And there's two Renaissance Lounges but also currently not in use.

(Hey.....I note your Username 'Marbleski' That's a favorite spot of mine for skiing and hopefully I'll get too again this winter)
Thanks for the update. I grew up a few minutes drive from Marble. My mom and my wife’s parents still live there so we get out often to ski. My dad worked with CN until our railroad closed in 1988 and we often used his pass to travel to Ottawa to visit family. I took many summer trips throughout high school and university just for the fun of travelling by ferry and train. I had to pay a small fee for a upper or lower berth and at times splurged for a roomette. Summer of 85 I made two back to back trips after finishing university. Back then we took the train from North Sydney to Truro and connected with the Ocean in Truro.

31 years later In Nov 2016 I attended a Conference in London Ontario and I took the trains back to Halifax and caught a flight home to St. John’s. The room, dining car and Park car were a step back in time, just as I remembered it. The train ride was too short lol.

My son moved to Ottawa in June and over his five year stay I hope to take the train one way to or from Halifax now and then. I noticed the once a week schedule but it won’t be the same without the Park Car and being confined to the room. Glad I read your post about the Park Car. Is it gone for good?
 

toddinde

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I think you covered it quite well. The 'Service Manager' is a customer service position.....where the Engineer, 2nd Engineer are operating positions, handling the old conductor positions and they do not deal with the passengers.
Interesting. There are pluses and minuses. Plus of the Amtrak system is having operating crews in the rear of the train. Advantage to the ViIA system is operating crews aren’t distracted with passenger functions. Does VIA employ their operating crews like Amtrak does, or are they railroad employees like in the old days here?
 
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Glad I read your post about the Park Car. Is it gone for good?
Unfortunately most of us have concluded that it is (gone for good). It's a double-whammy for the train too. Not only does it remove the best recreational space, but until they put some other Budd sleepers back in the consist it also contained the only drawing room (aka Large Bedroom for 2) - the best sleeping space for people who don't like to climb ladders on trains.
 
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WWW

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Before the demise of the Park Car(s) hope there is some consideration to offer for sale to private varnish operators
before turning the metal into beverage cans ! Surely these cars would make the fitting end to any train consist !
 

zephyr17

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Unfortunately most of us have concluded that it is (gone for good). It's a double-whammy for the train too. Not only does it remove the best recreational space, but until they put some other Budd sleepers back in the consist it also contained the only drawing room (aka Large Bedroom for 2) - the best sleeping space for people who don't like to climb ladders on trains.
Drawing Rooms have 2 lower berths and 1 upper. They are designed to sleep up to 3 people and are "Cabins for 3" in VIA's nomenclature.

They certainly are nice for 2 as both passengers got a lower. My now ex wife and I had one Vancouver-Toronto in 1986.
 
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zephyr17

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I
Before the demise of the Park Car(s) hope there is some consideration to offer for sale to private varnish operators
before turning the metal into beverage cans ! Surely these cars would make the fitting end to any train consist !
The end of Park Cars in service on the Ocean does not mean the demise of the Park Cars. I doubt that VIA is intending to dispose of the non-Prestige Parks that saw service on the Ocean. They can be used on the Hudson Bay and the Skeena.
 

NS VIA Fan

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Before the demise of the Park Car(s) hope there is some consideration to offer for sale to private varnish operators before turning the metal into beverage cans ! Surely these cars would make the fitting end to any train consist !

As other have said the Ocean's Park Car is probably gone for good but I don't think there is any fear of the displaced Parks being turned into beverage cans! VIA can use them elsewhere such as the scenic runs to Jonquiere and Senneterre. (Below at Hervey Jct on the way to Jonquiere several years ago)

VIA Park.jpg

Unfortunately most of us have concluded that it is (gone for good). It's a double-whammy for the train too. Not only does it remove the best recreational space, but until they put some other Budd sleepers back in the consist it also contained the only drawing room (aka Large Bedroom for 2) - the best sleeping space for people who don't like to climb ladders on trains.

Perhaps for the Railfan and I know that's the audience here!!....but for most others if VIA does add a Skyline to the Ocean as rumoured it will be just fine! It might lack the round-end observation loved by fans for that classic Streamliner look but it does have the same Dome as a Park Car along with Lounge seating plus a Dining area on the main level.

'Cabins for 3' (or 'Drawing Room' (or 'Large Cabin for 2') are now becoming available on the Ocean. (below is a screen shot for Sept 15 th) As the Renaissance Sleepers sell-out.....is appears VIA is making the Budd Chateau Sleepers available for booking as they are in the consist anyway. There are now 4 Chateau and 4 Renaissance Sleepers running.

VIA Sept 15.jpg

Below........Skyline Lounge Seating on the Main Level

VIA Skyline.jpg
 
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'Cabins for 3' (or 'Drawing Room' (or 'Large Cabin for 2') are now becoming available on the Ocean. (below is a screen shot for Sept 15 th) As the Renaissance Sleepers sell-out.....is appears VIA is making the Budd Chateau Sleepers available for booking as they are in the consist anyway. There are now 4 Chateau and 4 Renaissance Sleepers running.

View attachment 24175
Interesting development. It looks like they're finally unifying the terminology system-wide. I've taken several trips down east and only once missed out on a "Large for 2". I wonder why the change to 3 now? On another note, hopefully they've done some work on the Chateaus. The last one I saw was in rough shape, still in the older scheme.
 

NS VIA Fan

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On another note, hopefully they've done some work on the Chateaus. The last one I saw was in rough shape, still in the older scheme.

Hopefully...it's been 30 years since the HEP1 rebuilding!

But when I travel..... if a Renaissance Sleeper is not available I will reschedule to another date.
 

SubwayNut

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Doesn't Metra in Chicago still have some "beacons", where waiting passengers push a button to activate a flashing light on the approach to the station?
The South Shore Line has flag stops, they are at Beverly Shores, Hudson Lake, and Gary Chicago Airport and you must activate the strobe light. Look at the legened in the timetable (they don't publish 'Fs' by individual trips since their flag stops on all trips), I've gotten on and/or off at all 3! I've linked to the photos on my website.
 

zephyr17

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Interesting development. It looks like they're finally unifying the terminology system-wide. I've taken several trips down east and only once missed out on a "Large for 2". I wonder why the change to 3 now? On another note, hopefully they've done some work on the Chateaus. The last one I saw was in rough shape, still in the older scheme.
My understanding is they refurbished the Manors in the fairly recent past, but not the Chateaus that weren't picked for Prestige reconstruction and remained intact.

I noticed the crew Chateau on the Canadian the last few times I rode it was getting pretty tatty just passing through it
 

Marbleski

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Hopefully...it's been 30 years since the HEP1 rebuilding!
As the Renaissance Sleepers sell-out.....is appears VIA is making the Budd Chateau Sleepers available for booking as they are in the consist anyway. There are now 4 Chateau and 4 Renaissance Sleepers running.
[/QUOTE]

Just curious, what is the difference between a Renaissance and Chateau Sleeper? See attached link for a very bad video of the car and room I stayed in during the fall of 2016. Was this a Renaissance Sleeper? The roomette had a shower inside the attached bathroom. On my last trip on the Ocean in 1985 the showers were at the end of the car and some of the cars had upper and lower berths as well. Was this a Chateau sleeper?

Also why is the empty baggage car attached to the Park Car? That was not there in 1985 either. I also noticed in this car the windows open where the cars join. I remember as kids we would stand between the cars with the window open standing on the swaying platform. Looks like that is no longer possible.

Hope this link works. If so, fast forward to the end to see the car and room I stayed in.

 

NS VIA Fan

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Just curious, what is the difference between a Renaissance and Chateau Sleeper? See attached link for a very bad video of the car and room I stayed in during the fall of 2016. Was this a Renaissance Sleeper? The roomette had a shower inside the attached bathroom. On my last trip on the Ocean in 1985 the showers were at the end of the car and some of the cars had upper and lower berths as well. Was this a Chateau sleeper?

Also why is the empty baggage car attached to the Park Car? That was not there in 1985 either. I also noticed in this car the windows open where the cars join. I remember as kids we would stand between the cars with the window open standing on the swaying platform. Looks like that is no longer possible.

Chateau Sleepers are Stainless Steel and originally built for Canadian Pacific's The Canadian in 1955. VIA completely rebuilt them in the late '80s early '90s.

Renaissance Sleepers were built for British Rail in the mid 1990s to run through the Channel Tunnel. That train never ran and VIA acquired them in 2000. These are in the green paint scheme and this is the type of sleeper you were in in 2016.

That's not a baggage car attached to the Park Car. It's called a Transition Car {but uses a baggage car former sleeper shell). It has a European style coupler on one end and a North American coupler on the rear so a Park Car can be attached. The interior of the car has wall displays and flags of the provinces as well a freezer and storage units.

You can find all VIA car types here (scroll down in the link and click on each)

Train fleet - Rolling stock | VIA Rail
 

joelkfla

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The South Shore Line has flag stops, they are at Beverly Shores, Hudson Lake, and Gary Chicago Airport and you must activate the strobe light. Look at the legened in the timetable (they don't publish 'Fs' by individual trips since their flag stops on all trips), I've gotten on and/or off at all 3! I've linked to the photos on my website.
Thanks, I'll check it out.

I do wish you would bring back the NYC Subway pages; I really enjoyed browsing the photos. Even if they're not snazzy & high-tech.
 

Marbleski

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Chateau Sleepers are Stainless Steel and originally built for Canadian Pacific's The Canadian in 1955. VIA completely rebuilt them in the late '80s early '90s.

Renaissance Sleepers were built for British Rail in the mid 1990s to run through the Channel Tunnel. That train never ran and VIA acquired them in 2000. These are in the green paint scheme and this is the type of sleeper you were in in 2016.

That's not a baggage car attached to the Park Car. It's called a Transition Car {but uses a baggage car former sleeper shell). It has a European style coupler on one end and a North American coupler on the rear so a Park Car can be attached. The interior of the car has wall displays and flags of the provinces as well a freezer and storage units.

You can find all VIA car types here (scroll down in the link and click on each)

Train fleet - Rolling stock | VIA Rail
NS VIA Fan thanks so much for the detailed response and the photos and links you posted. Very much appreciated.

I will keep an eye on this site for updates on both the addition of the dome car and the opening of the dining car. Once we get to this stage I hope to take the train one way between Halifax to Ottawa.
 
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