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Blog Posts by babycorn
Page#    4 Blog Entries  
★★  Rail Fanning
Jul 08 2013 (08:09)   56137/Ooty-Mettupalayam MG Passenger | UAM/Udagamandalam (2 PFs)

babycorn   19 blog posts
Entry# 802818            Tags   Past Edits
Travelogue : 21 June 2013
The purpose of this trip was to experience the full length of the Nilgiri Mountain Railways which was long pending. The last time I had been to ooty few years ago, the line from Coonoor to Mettupalayam was suspended due to landslides. Now found a little free time to travel there so I did.... first travelled to Ooty via bus and went to botanical gardens in the morning.
to the railway station at 1pm and had lunch at the VRR. The train arrived at 145pm with 5 coaches (Coonor 2 coaches and Mettupalayam 3 coaches) with a YDM-4 locomotive. The seats in second sitting cost Rs 10 (Fare) + 15 (Reservation fee).
The seats were found more cramped than I imagined and somehow fit my frame into the seat. I had no co-passenger in my seat till Coonoor when some passengers got upgraded from unreserved. The coaches were neatly maintained but people travelling with me irrespective of background were dumping trash in the fragile nilgiri region along the tracks without any consideration for the environment.
The train left on time and the engine was at the front of the train when going downhill as usual. The stops were Lovedale, Ketti, Aravanakadu, Wellington and then Coonoor.
The track into Coonoor from Ooty is outside this terminal station, thus the train went past the station and reversed into it. Here the YDM-4 diesel engine and two coaches of Coonoor were detached and taken to the yard. Many passengers waiting at Coonoor were getting their unreserved tickets upgraded to 2S or FC. A oil fired steam engine of X-class was attached which had water spilling out among bursts of steam billowing out of the top.
The train slowly moved out of Coonoor and latched onto the rack and pinion system. The train moved downhill and kept at a steady 15kmph thereabouts. There was soot back-flow towards the coaches in the tunnels and window seated passengers got a fair share :-). Lights were switched on at appropriate times.
The route was breathtaking on both sides of the track. The rock cuttings had just enough space for the train and had tiny water streams flowing down the sides. The plants and trees were dancing to the movement of the train and it was a charming sight.
The bridges, viaducts were just marvels of engineering and had been standing unerringly since many years. Also retaining walls had been constructed at some places as a reaction to the landslides that had occurred a few years back disrupting services.
Hillgrove station brought relief to the compressed passengers who stretched their legs and had some snacks such as hot bajji, biscuits, cola etc.. There were a lot of monkeys around and they were fed biscuits by some passengers. This station is the only commercial halt between Coonoor and Mettupalayam.
Monkeys just sneaked up behind and I had a "heart in the mouth" moment when I nearly stepped on one as I turned around to click a photo of the landscape. The monkeys were relentless in their quest for food though.
The steam engine filled its water tank and had a few drops of lubricant applied to the wheels and other mechanisms.
The train reached Kallar (about 7 kms from Mettupalayam) where the rack and pinion section of the track ends and the speed restrictions were lifted. The train halted for a few minutes, tokens were exchanged by the loco pilot and station master. The train setoff at good speed to Mettupalayam. Children and adults alike waved at the passengers in the train at level crossings. The charm of such a hill train is always there no matter how old you are.
Reached Mettupalayam and crossed over to the broad gauge side of the station. Found a charging point for my near dead smartphone which did a brunt of the videography on the way. Found a chair next to it waiting for my next train to Salem (Nilagiri Express) to be brought onto the platform.
Thanks for reading. Hope your wonderful travels take you to wonderful places....
Travel well, Travel Responsibly !
Amit C Javgal (2013).
note: photos and videos will be posted soon after sorting.

3 posts - Mon Jul 08, 2013

Jul 31 2013 (21:27)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802818-4            Tags   Past Edits
The complete blog post is done with pictures. It can be read at click here

Jul 31 2013 (22:08)
Sk Mangla*^~   1339 blog posts   75844 correct pred (98% accurate)
Re# 802818-5            Tags   Past Edits
Dear Mr amit... Many thanks for such a CRISP, TO the POINT narration of this wonderful trip on a heritage route..The entire route & journey became live as I went through your write-up..

Aug 01 2013 (09:32)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802818-6            Tags   Past Edits
Thank you

Aug 01 2013 (09:34)
Tejas*^~   6477 blog posts   4341 correct pred (64% accurate)
Re# 802818-7            Tags   Past Edits
Wonderful narration Amit. Great going!

Aug 01 2013 (10:03)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802818-8            Tags   Past Edits
Thank you
Rail Fanning
Jul 08 2013 (08:17)   16235/Tuticorin - Mysuru Express | SA/Salem Junction (6 PFs)

babycorn   19 blog posts
Entry# 802821            Tags   Past Edits
Travelogue: 22 June 2013
Here the wait started.
Train after train came and left on PF-4. Some that I spotted were Cheran exp, Allepey Chennai exp, Mangalore Chennai exp, Kochuveli Yesvantpur AC exp, Mayiladutarai Mysore exp among many others.
There were two challenges to this change of train at this time of the day, firstly the sleep which even the namesake coffee did
nothing to abate and secondly the near 'vampiric' mosquitoes which did all in their power to get a bite out of me and they did succeed.
I took many walks up and town the platform to keep awake. At around 1 am, somebody in the station had the brains to switch on the fans on the platform giving much needed relief to the passengers.
Salem station was very much alive at that hour with many boarding the trains. The constabulary of RPF were constantly patrolling the platform and boarding trains to ensure safety and I thank them for that.
My train, the Tuticorin-Mysore express finally moved in at 0154am headed by ED-WDM 3D, late by nearly an hour. I found my lower berth in the train and chained up my luggage not before removing the shawl to cover myself. During this an RPF constable was staring at me and he must have thought I was trying to steal from my own luggage :-P. I now wish to thank him for being alert, they must see all sort of people in their duty.
Was woken up at 545am by the Southern Railways TTE. I was feeling groggy at that moment but could make out somewhat that he was asking me in Tamil (I don't know how to speak but I can understand a bit) whether I was the chap who boarded at Salem. I nodded in the affirmative and showed him my ticket. I think he was de-boarding at Hosur as his jurisdiction may have been ending. Anyway I was thankful for the wake-up call and freshened up.
The next station was Hosur at 555am, then Caramelaram at 634am. Had a window seat so there was a good view of the early morning scenes.
The train slowed down nearing Bangalore city limits. The train separated from the Salem-YPR line down the Channasandra triangle line towards cantt. It descended down a ramp-like structure and moved on towards Cantonment. Crossed Baiyappanahalli at 652am.
Moved on towards Bangalore East at 658am where I spotted the Chennai bound Lalbagh exp.
Headed into Bangalore Cantonment at 704am where many passengers alighted and coffee vendors boarded.
Now here on for 5kms to Bangalore City Station one hour is allotted so the massive delay vanished due to statistical play or as it is called slack time :-).
The train reached Bangalore City at 717 am with a delay of 37 minutes on Platform-5. One could sense the urgency with which the train moved to the station. The train then left towards Mysore.
I quickly bolted out of the station premises via the foot-overbridge, through the subway to the BMTC bus terminal and to my home.
Thus came to an end a trip where everything went like clock-work and I saw all the sights that I originally set out to see and the end to a successful trip I wanted to do since many years.
Thanks for reading. Hope your wonderful travels take you to wonderful places....
Travel well, Travel Responsibly !
Amit C Javgal (2013).
note: pictures and videos will be posted soon after sorting.

Jul 08 2013 (10:30)
PixelTrailzDotCom*^~   1747 blog posts   51 correct pred (78% accurate)
Re# 802821-1            Tags   Past Edits
One quick question, why did you not take the Island from CBE itself

Jul 08 2013 (10:46)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802821-2            Tags   Past Edits
I didn't think about that I guess. My thought process was getting down at MTP, then saw only one train leaving there, saw the stops of chennai nilgiri exp, seeing salem, I remembered that many Bangalore trains stopped there giving me higher chance of a confirmed ticket so tried that.

Jul 31 2013 (21:27)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802821-3            Tags   Past Edits
The complete blog post is done with pictures. It can be read at click here
Rail Fanning
Jul 08 2013 (08:11)   12672/Nilagiri (Blue Mountain) Express | MTP/Mettupalayam (2 PFs)

babycorn   19 blog posts
Entry# 802820            Tags   Past Edits
Travelogue : 21 June 2013
Many passengers from the mountain train were waiting for this one and only connecting train towards Chennai. An Erode WDM-3D brought in the local passenger service from Coimbatore. The loco reversed and pushed this train into a resting track. It then set about joining the two halves of the Nilagiri express which were resting on separate tracks due to the lack of one long track there.
The first half of the train was brought onto the platform and the line was switched behind it, it then reversed onto
the second half of the coaches to which it was attached.
The complete train set came onto the platform at 717pm. My RAC status during booking had changed to a confirmed side upper seat in Sleeper. I was to take this train upto Salem. Found my seat and sat there. The coach was clean and the smell of cleaning agents implied that disinfection of some sort had been done. I planned to pick up dinner at Coimbatore junction where the train was scheduled to halt for 25 minutes to change to electric engine as well as add on more coaches. The train left MTP on time towards CBE. It made a brief halt at Coimbatore North outer as well as in the station for signal clearance. The max speed on this stretch was around 80 kmph.
Had lovely parotha and some ordinary biriyani from the veg refreshment room on the platform parcelled and ate it in the train as it left Coimbatore. The locomotive that took us from here was an ED WAP-4. I constantly kept track of my position through GPS and co-related it with trainenquiry.com as well. The train moved at tremendous speed and justified its superfast status keeping to its schedule with about a 10 minute delay here and there.
I must make a mention of the well mannered TTE here, He was very polite and was helping waitlisted/RAC passengers to find a seat. Even for the drunkard who was verbally abusing him in the presence of his brother and wife. People like him are to be respected as he was sticking strictly to the guidelines of his job and being very vigilant. One needs compassion as well as rational thinking to carry out such a job where human interaction plays a pivotal role.
Got down at Salem Junction at around 1150pm.
Thanks for reading. Hope your wonderful travels take you to wonderful places....
Travel well, Travel Responsibly !
Amit C Javgal (2013).
note: photos and videos will be posted soon after sorting.

1 posts - Mon Jul 08, 2013

Jul 08 2013 (09:09)
selvamssm*^~   4741 blog posts   38 correct pred (49% accurate)
Re# 802820-2            Tags   Past Edits
Did you got chance to see the full rake composition? If so can you share the details? Thanks.

Jul 08 2013 (10:48)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802820-3            Tags   Past Edits
I didn't. Spent my waiting time at one point on the platform as I had to charge my phone and couldn't leave it unattended.

Jul 08 2013 (10:51)
12658 Chennai Mail*^~   9023 blog posts   22630 correct pred (65% accurate)
Re# 802820-4            Tags   Past Edits
good narration..

Jul 14 2013 (08:05)
Hercule Poirot~   6459 blog posts   144 correct pred (72% accurate)
Re# 802820-5            Tags   Past Edits
very good report sir.... Blue is always pretigious train of cbe

Jul 31 2013 (21:27)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 802820-6            Tags   Past Edits
The complete blog post is done with pictures. It can be read at click here
★★★  Rail Fanning
Jun 18 2013 (19:55)   12079/KSR Bengaluru - Hubballi Janshatabdi Express

babycorn   19 blog posts
Entry# 786662            Tags   Past Edits
Hello IRI, I just joined this website as a member. I travelled in the SBC-UBL Janshatabdi yesterday to and from hubli as a one day trip. IRI was the inspiration for this trip. The travelogue is rather large so I have written it in wordpress. Please read it at your convenience at click here

16 posts - Tue Jun 18, 2013

2 posts - Wed Jun 19, 2013

Jun 19 2013 (11:26)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 786662-23            Tags   Past Edits
Thanks Mr.Nazeer and Mr.Kartik

Jun 19 2013 (14:34)
maheshsunda*^~   4332 blog posts   31421 correct pred (71% accurate)
Re# 786662-24            Tags   Past Edits
Hello ACJ, welcome to IRI. Excellent start, the Shikhar Dhawan way. Keep going. Sky is the limit and nobody knows where it is. Just the way everyone here wanted it. Great style, kudos.

Jun 19 2013 (14:50)
Charm Totally Vanished*^~   20631 blog posts   19691 correct pred (77% accurate)
Re# 786662-25            Tags   Past Edits
Mast report hai.

Jun 19 2013 (16:22)
PKV*^~   19093 blog posts   72 correct pred (79% accurate)
Re# 786662-26            Tags   Past Edits
One GREAT from me .

Jun 20 2013 (13:08)
babycorn   19 blog posts
Re# 786662-27            Tags   Past Edits
Thank you Mr. Mahesh Sundaram, Mr. Goyal WC, Mr. PK Venkatramani for the appreciation.
Page#    4 Blog Entries  

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