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Blog Posts by Vivek Gopinath
Page#    93 Blog Entries  next>>
★★  Rail Fanning
Sep 21 2015 (21:36)   16864/Mannargudi - Bhagat ki Kothi Weekly Express | GI/Guduvancheri (3 PFs)

Vivek Gopinath   157 blog posts
Entry# 1596391            Tags   Past Edits
Diesel Locomotive storms at full throttle in twilight with the Rajasthan bound 16864 Mannargudi - Bhagat ki Kothi Express! enjoy listening to the blaring horns belted out by 13566 WDG3A from GOC Diesel loco shed.
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Sep 21 2015 (22:11)
Prime Focus   78 blog posts   13 correct pred (93% accurate)
Re# 1596391-1            Tags   Past Edits
Good  Nice Beautifully captures ;Useful Vivek
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Aug 23 2015 (21:43)   16101/Boat Mail (Rameswaram Express) (PT) | PBM/Pamban (1 PFs)

Vivek Gopinath   157 blog posts
Entry# 1572288            Tags   Past Edits
PAMBAN BRIDGE Train Video : Rameswaram Bridge - Watch the legendary 16101 Boat Mail Express slowly traversing the century-old Pamban Bridge!
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Rail Fanning
May 17 2015 (17:58)   12841/Coromandel Express (PT) | AKM/Arambakkam (2 PFs) | RPM/WAP-4/22959

Vivek Gopinath   157 blog posts
Entry# 1472783            Tags   Past Edits
COROMANDEL EXPRESS at Full Speed : Indian Railways Video - South Eastern Railway's legendary 12841 Howrah - Chennai Coromandel Express maneuvers a sharp curve and blasts at MPS towards its final destination Chennai Central.
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Aug 04 2015 (23:00)
Guest: 7fc2c9fc   show all posts
Re# 1472783-1            Tags   Past Edits
Blog Entry Unlocked.
Blog entry unlocked for further discussion.

Aug 04 2015 (23:02)
Guest: 7fc2c9fc   show all posts
Re# 1472783-2            Tags   Past Edits
Pic updated as Locopic.
★★★  Travelogue
Jul 24 2015 (15:49)   14258/Kashi Vishwanath Express (PT) | NDLS/New Delhi (16 PFs) | TKD/WDP-4B/40049

LHB for TN Express~   1093 blog posts   183 correct pred (71% accurate)
Entry# 1549580            Tags   Past Edits
When a ride or trip is destined to be wonderful, no one can stop you from enjoying it. Fate may throw a lot of hurdles in your way, but those may just be to test your patience, to see if you really deserve what you are going to get in the immediate future. Hello friends, here I present a trip report based on a journey i undertook last month on board the Kashi Vishwanath express. Well, its not just a report, its a story, which I have tried to present in 3D as well. Don't worry I am just talking about the video Compilation for which click here Those of you who can spare 37mins of your life, go ahead and watch the video, and those of you who can't spare that much time, read on. :)
was on board the Karnataka Sampark Kranti exp headed towards Delhi. I was on my way to cover the MG section of NER from Izzatnagar in Bareilly to Aishbagh in Lucknow, first part of which involved reaching Delhi on the 5th of June, and leaving on the 6th of June to Lucknow, by Kashi Vishwanath exp (KV). Initially KV was not even a part of the plan. But due to a lot of twists and turns in the run of events, I was forced to ask Nitin in Delhi to book me a tatkal ticket for the 6th. If my train to Delhi Hazrat Nizamuddin- KSK (via Kacheguda), had run anywhere close to its schedule, I would have been at Nitin’s house the moment he booked my ticket. But hey, what’s a trip without a little adventure, huh? Thanks to some superb section controlling, I ended up reaching Nizamuddin railway station @ 10:53 hours, well after my ticket was booked, completing my marathon run from Bangalore in 36hours and 36 minutes- how ironical. Initially when Nitin contacted me, I asked him to try for the Amritsar Saharsa Garibrath, which showed a tatkal booking quota of 292seats in 3AC, against his wishes of trying in KV; which he himself was taking, along with his family. As fate would have it, I was still at Asaoti, when the Tatkal bookings commenced. My train was struggling between Asaoti and Ballabgarh when Nitin called up to tell that the seats of the GR had vanished at the blink of an eye. I asked him to try all classes in KV; and somehow he managed a ticket in the 2 AC of KV. So, fate decided that I would be traveling in 2 AC of KV while Nitin was being booked in 1 AC of the same train. I looked forward to traveling with him, as this was my first long distance journey with him. After a tired and strenuous day, I settled in the retiring room at Anand Vihar Terminal for the night, for the next day we were going to undertake a journey which would remain etched in our memories for a long time to come.
07:45 hours, June 6- I locked my room at Anand Vihar Terminal and handed over the keys to caretaker. I went down to have a cup of coffee and Bread sandwich for my breakfast. After about 15mins I walked towards the Anand Vihar Metro Station, and boarded a metro to Nitin’s house. It was about quarter to 9 when I reached there. It was only upon reaching his house that I learnt about the plan of Nitin’s dad to travel to Lucknow that night (6th) upon official work. While his onward ticket was taken care of, we had to book a Tatkal ticket for his return on the night of the 7th. Our train was at 11:35, and we had to leave as soon as we booked the ticket to avoid rushing into the station at the last minute. Both Nitin and I tried together, him on the desktop and me on a Laptop. In a tense battle with IRCTC, Nitin was automatically logged out twice while he tried in the Lucknow-New Delhi AC exp, while I managed to successfully book a ticket in the Lucknow mail. Finally, breakfast was done, again; bags were packed, and we rushed out at about 10:25, to catch an auto to New Delhi station; but later decided to take a metro from Jor Bagh keeping the traffic of Delhi in mind. After avoiding a couple of crowded metro trains, we managed to board a train in which we could find place to stand, phew- the rush hour sucks in Delhi metro. We entered New Delhi station from pf16 side (Ajmeri Gate); at about 11:10, 25mins before our departure time. As we moved in I learned from the LED Display boards that our KV was to depart from pf8 that day. As we passed over the pf15/16 exit stairs, I observed that both platforms were empty. We descended the flight of stairs leading to pf8 and it ended very near to our coaches. Our friends Aditya Kaushal and Dennis Jacob had come to see us off. We learned from Aditya Kaushal that our power was Tughlakabad (TKD) WDP4B 40049 in LHF. While they were chit-chatting away, I went to find out from the TTE if I could pay the difference in fare and join Nitin in 1A, provided seats were available. The TTE said he would inform me as soon as we cross Ghaziabad. It was just then that I listened to the platform announcements carefully. The Amritsar-Saharsa GR was expected to arrive on pf15 at 11:35hours.
I immediately went and disclosed this to Nitin and the others. While they speculated that late running train would be allowed to overtake us en-route, I was wondering if it would be allowed to depart ahead of us, because just as we were speaking, I saw that the GR which was expected at 11:35 was entering pf15. I threw a glance at my watch, it was 11:30hours- 5mins to our train’s scheduled departure time. Those 5mins flew like nothing, and at 11:35, we were still on pf8, waiting for our starter, the Kanpur Shatabdi being the culprit this time, as it was being received on pf5 and our exit switches were blocked. Finally, the train started at 11:40, a 5min delay from the outset. As we bade goodbye to our friends, we were wondering if the GR had departed in the gap, but received a pleasant shock when we saw that it still held up at pf15. With a cheeky smile of seeing a GR overtake, which was an additional bonus for us, we went in. As we crossed Shivaji Bridge, the Shridham Superfast exp from Jabalpur came to a halt, awaiting its turn to enter NDLS. One after the other; we skipped all stations till Sahihabad at the allowed MPS. As we descended the Sahibabad ramp, I saw the late running Vikramshila exp move towards Anand Vihar(T) led by Ghaziabad WAP1 22063, and no sooner had we cleared Sahibabad, the Puri bound Kalinga Utkal exp rushed past me on the Old Delhi line, led by a surprise offlink – Shakurbasti WDM2 17877. In the meanwhile as I checked the running status of Saharsa GR; NTES showed it to have departed from NDLS @ 11:55, just 15mins behind us and 45mins behind schedule. At around this time, the TTE confirmed that the one seat in cabin A of the first AC part of HA1; was free to be occupied. I gladly agreed to pay the difference fare and joined Nitin and his family at Ghaziabad, while the TTE said he would confirm the formalities after Ghaziabad. All this while, I had requested Nitin to keep track of the GR. KV being a supercrawler had 16 halts in the NDLS-LKO Stretch, while the GR had only 3. We were expecting an Overtake at GZB itself. But KV completed its scheduled halt and departed without getting overtaken. Jalandhar Intercity crossed us @ GZB led by its customary link, Ludhiana (LDH) WDM3A- 18622. After negotiating the huge Ghaziabad curve, we watched with glee as all of our regular RF spots were being skipped at MPS- Mehrauli, Adhyatmik Nagar and Dasna; however we missed the crossing of Muzaffarpur Garibrath while settling for a quick lunch. Pilkuwa halt was executed on mainline, while I was expecting us to be looped for the GR overtake, but no; the Section Controllers had something else in mind. After completing the lunch I rushed to the door to find out that we had reached Hapur Jn. (HPU), and were slowing down at HPU outer. The weekly Dibrugarh Rajdhani (12235) was approaching from the opposite direction, led by TKD WDP4B 40020. As we entered Hapur, both Nitin and I readied ourselves for the GR overtake, but it had just then departed from Dasna. After our 3min commercial halt, we departed. An SSB WDM2 was resting on pf4 with a Passenger rake. We were still not sure of what was happening. As our thoughts were wandering about, the TTE arrived in our cabin to complete the formalities of my up-gradation to 1AC. While paying him the requisite amount, we watched as more of our RF spots were skipped at MPS- Kuchesar road, Simbhooli etc. Just as I finished paying the TTE and he left, we slowed down as we had reached our next halt- Garhmukteshwar. The GR was nowhere close to us to overtake us here. Both happy and curious, we saw the Delhi bound Uttarakhand Sampark Kranti exp charge past us led by LDH WDM3A 14105 just as were departing. Just as the tail of UKSK rushed off towards Delhi, I laughed to myself; pitying at the sorry state of the hapless GR.
Pretty soon we were rushing past the new Garhmukteshwar Bridge on the river Ganges, while I was excited on seeing the Old Bridge still intact, it was disheartening to see it out of action after serving IR for about 100years. We speeded off towards our next halt; Gajraula Jn. This is where I witnessed a strange spectacle. As we were slowly entering pf2, I saw that a TKD WDP1 was madly honking while at the same time pushing an empty rake into Gajraula Jn., or so I presumed. When my coach was nearing the Passenger, I was surprised to see that passengers were on board the train. I received a shock when I saw that there was no loco in the train’s lead. The WDP1 was actually pushing the Najibabad-Gajraula Passenger into pf1; yes it was pushing, not hauling. Even here we checked the status of the GR, to find out that it had just crossed Simbhooli, it was managing to close the gap, but was not close enough to overtake us. While a freighter calmly proceeded towards Hapur on the up mainline, we departed GJL after a scheduled 2min halt. It was here that I cheekily told Nitin that the controllers were royally screwing a premier class train making it trail a normal M/E train for nearly 2hours in its run. After this was our penultimate halt in the GZB-MB section, Amroha. If the GR didn’t manage to overtake us here, we would have to be stopped in some way side station for the overtake to happen; or the overtake would happen in Moradabad; so we thought. But the GR managed to catch up with us- finally. We entered Amroha, and our halt extended well beyond the scheduled 2mins. Our patient wait entered its 6th minute, when I could see a speck approaching us on the down mainline. In a few seconds I could see a clearer visual of a Ludhiana hunk approaching in the distance- it was the GR. Angry, frustrated, insulted, furious, and much more, the LPs showed no hesitation in thrashing the looped KV exp at MPS of 110kmph. 18 coaches long, a green thunder headed by a DBR fitted LDH hunk, stamped its authority on us, and rushed towards Moradabad. Glad at the bonus capture we got for this trip, Nitin and I boarded the train, and watched each other’s videos with satisfaction. But little did we know, this adventure was far from over. As we approached Moradabad from the GZB line, a BCNA rake headed by a rebuilt Malda Town (MLDT) WDG3A fitted with APU; also arrived parallel to us from the Najibabad line. While it was halted at the home signal, we were given clearance to enter pf1. Railfan Zahaib Mateen came to meet us in MB, and it was from him that we learned that the GR was still stuck in pf4 of MB. The story went something like this, the Amritsar bound Jan Nayak exp was expected on pf2, prior to us, the Kolkata bound Gurumukhi exp was on pf1, and construction was going on in pf3 and hence the GR was pushed to pf4. As soon as Gurumukhi departed we were received on pf1. I was sure that our halt would go beyond the scheduled 10mins, since the GR being a premier class train, commanded priority. I didn’t have the faintest idea of what was going to follow.
In a humorous sense, I asked Z (Zahaib); as to how it would feel if our KV was given the nod ahead of GR to depart MB, thinking it was highly unlikely since both trains traversed the same route till Lucknow (LKO). No sooner did I finish my sentence, I heard the sound of CBC jerks behind me. The shock of a lifetime, all three of us were surprised beyond measure, Saeed Anwar wouldn’t have been surprised as much when his 13year old record was broken by Sachin Tendulkar. We were actually allowed to depart MB ahead of the GR; technically, the GR was re-overtaken by KV. My excitement levels knew no bounds; there was a huge adrenaline rush within me. I kept speculating as to where the second overtake might happen; if the second overtake might happen at all. We were still recovering from the shock; when Gonda (GD) WDM3A 16188 announced its arrival with a short toot, to snap us out of our day dreams. It was leading the Jan Nayak exp into MB. KV was soon accelerating towards Katghar, after which we crossed the Ramganga River. Within few minutes of crossing the Ramganga, the weekly Jan Sadharan exp from Saharsa to Amritsar with its unique Hybrid LHB rake rushed past us led by LDH WDM3A 16277. Pretty soon we halted at our next scheduled stoppage – Rampur Jn. The lines towards Katgodham veered away from this spot. In the meantime we tracked to see the GR had finally departed from MB. And then we rested awhile before our next halt Bareilly. At around quarter to 5, we raced past the yard of Bareilly City and soon enough were knocking at the gates of Bareilly Jn (BE). We were about 20mins late, and as we tracked the GR, NTES said that it had almost caught up with us. But, since the GR also had a scheduled halt at BE, it was not allowed to overtake us. We Completed our scheduled 5min halt and departed BE, while the horribly late running Jayanagar-Anand Vihar(T) Tatkal spl pulled into pf2 for a scheduled halt led by a GD WDM3A. We were sure the second overtake would happen soon. Our next scheduled halt came just at the 3rd station after Bareilly- Pitambarpur. And no sooner had we entered Pitambarpur, than it showed that the GR had departed BE. Our halt entered its 8th minute, and neither did we depart nor was there any sign of the GR. As our patient wait touched the 10th minute, the mainline starter and the advanced starter went green in a matter of seconds. And we geared up for witnessing and recording the rarest overtake of our lives. A premier class train overtook a M/E class train on the same route twice. As Impossible as that sounds, it did indeed happen that day. Fully charged up, all cylinders firing, the new crew which took over at MB was maybe pissed off at being delayed so much; so much so that they refused to take their hand off the honk button. Honking madly, the LDH hunk once again charged at well above 100kmph, leading the horribly delayed Amritsar-Garibrath towards Lucknow. It was a sight worth enjoying and relating to others. Within 5mins of the GR overtaking us again, we got the starter and moved out of Pitambarpur. Soon after we rushed towards Lucknow, and we spotted a cute little WDS4 belonging to NTPC at Miranpur Katra.
Following this, the 10 coach Sitapur-Delhi passenger rushed past us led by TKD WDP3A 15525, somewhere between Milak and Miranpur Katra. We Looped into Tilhar for a scheduled halt, while the mainline was blocked by a BCNHL freight. We had absolutely no idea that it was being headed by Lucknow (LKO) WDG4D 70343, and ended up screwing the shots. But one can’t ask for everything in a trip I guess. Soon after this, the Firozpur bound Ganga Sutlej exp rushed past us led by LDH WDM3A 16195R. The loco had a very brownish orange tinge to its livery which added to the sunlight directly falling on its face led me to mistake it for a loco from Patratu (PTRU) shed. Only when the loco neared me; I noticed the shed name written on its long hood face in Hindi. As the day was folding into the evening, we rushed past stations like Bahardarpur halt en-route our next halt, Shahjahanpur Jn.; where we crossed the Howrah-Amritsar Punjab mail led by a GZB WAP4. The small platform shared by my KV and the Punjab mail resembled a village when the passengers of both trains were on the platform, either boarding, alighting or filling water in whatever tap available. The Punjab mail departed first, while we departed a couple of minutes later. All we could do was rejoice the events of the day, even as the sun was setting behind us. At about quarter past 7, we slowed down just before Roza Jn. It was here that we crossed the train which formerly held the record of the express with the most no. of halts in IR- the Howrah Amritsar exp led by LDH WDG3A 14847; along with that we also spotted a Samastipur (SPJ) WDG3A lying dead in the sidings of Roza Jn. With daylight fading out completely after we crossed Kahiliya, Nitin and I decided to call it a day and settled for some Tomato soup. Trust me when I say this, the Tomato soup is something one should watch out for whilst traveling in KV. So tasty was it that we decided to have a second one when the train halted at Hardoi. We were close to 40mins late, but that didn’t really matter, especially with the kind of adventurous ride we were blessed with. The next couple of halts were negotiated without much ado.
We had an unscheduled halt at Alamnagar, at around the same time, the Delhi bound Sadhbhavana exp came to a halt on pf3, led by some TKD ALCo, it was well past our arrival time at Lucknow, it was then that we got to know that the GR had pulled into LKO at our arrival time, in reality nearly 3hours behind schedule. After trudging through the rural parts of Lucknow, halting at virtually every signal possible, we came to one last stop near the Yard of Lucknow Jn. (LJN). I could see the rake of the Double Decker exp being prepped up for the run next morning to ANVT. Beside it was an ICF EOG, which was also growling. I thought it could be the LKO-NDLS AC exp rake, but pushed aside my thoughts keeping in mind that the AC exp was maintained by NR, and had no reason to be in the NER yard. Kanpur (CNB) WAP4 22227 was standing silently beside us, waiting to take charge of the Vaishali exp which would come later in the day and reverse at LJN. Finally after an ALCo hauled Padmavat exp headed towards MB and a WAP7 hauled Farakka exp headed towards Kanpur; our line was cleared and we were given the proceed to enter LKO. And no matter however slow we were in entering LKO; our marathon 10hours 40minutes journey from New Delhi ended with us meeting the Nawaab- the legendary Lucknow mail. As soon as we cleared the exit switches after entering pf4, Lucknow mail headed by a TKD WDP4B in LHF was given the starter from pf1, while a GZB WAP4 hauled Sadhbhavana SF exp headed for Chandigarh was gearing up for its 22:30hours departure. While being overtaken by the Saharsa GR twice on the same day was one thing, not being overtaken by Shramjeevi exp was another, which however is a regular affair. That day Shramjeevi was late by close to 2hours and reached LKO at around 23:00hours. Within 5mins of LKO mail’s departure, Gorakhdham exp headed for Hissar departed from pf5 behind its customary link, a WDP4D from Izzatnagar (IZN) shed. All said and done, it was a journey I would far from just forget, an experience of a lifetime truly. I found immense pleasure in narrating it to you my friends, hope you liked it too. Thanks again for patiently reading, hoping to come up with a better narrative next time. Until then, adios!!!

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Jul 26 2015 (14:46)
Vivek Gopinath   157 blog posts
Re# 1549580-5            Tags   Past Edits
Fantastic write-up Adi!

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Rail Fanning
Jun 30 2015 (14:44)   GDY/Guindy (4 PFs)

Vivek Gopinath   157 blog posts
Entry# 1528721            Tags   Past Edits
CHENNAI METRO RAIL Grand Inauguration! Alandur-Koyambedu FULL JOURNEY
The most awaited Chennai Metro Rail service was inaugurated by TN chief minister J Jayalalitha on 29/06/15 between Alandur and Koyambedu. The event was flagged off through video conferencing from the secretariat. Metro train left Alandur station at 12.14pm on its maiden run towards Koyambedu. Chennai joins the league of cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Jaipur which have metro rail systems.
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