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Old Time Trains


BC Rail

British Columbia Railway

Pacific Great Eastern modernized its passenger service in 1956 with a fleet of three RDC-1's (80 seats) having two small compartments on either side of the aisle at the A end for mail and express which reduced seating from standard 89 and four RDC-3's (48 seats). The RDC-3's in addition to a baggage mail and express compartment were unique being equipped with a small galley to serve light, hot meals to passengers only in that car on an all reserved-seat basis. All PGE Budd Cars were unique in Canada being the only cars with fluted stainless across the doors and on the ends making for a stylish appearance. This style was applied to some export cars including broad gauge ones for Brazil which included buffet car variation.


BC-12 leads another RDC-1 northbound to Lillooet. August 1985
This daily train provided a roundtrip schedule for tourists while the three-days-a-week
extended run to Prince George required an overnight stay due to its all-day long trip.
An RDC-3 provided room for large baggage for camping, canoeing etc.
as well as hot meal service at your seat only for those long-distance passengers.

BC-30 leads past the Fraser River at Fountain, BC on the Lillooet Subdivision.
7/22/2002 Steve Brown/Joseph Testagrose Collection

BC-31 leads passing Seton Lake (17 miles long!) at Mileage 145 Squamish Subdivision.
7/21/2002 Steve Brown/Joseph Testagrose Collection

BC-12 Last of three RDC-1's. Budd #6321 8/1956

BC-30 First of.four RDC-3's. Budd #6508 9/1956

BC= Budd Car a common nickname for these self-propelled cars built by the Budd Company of Philadelphia, PA. .
This was the only railway to use such a numbering system. Some railways used M prefix (Motor) for gas-electric doodlebugs.

BC-31 (2nd) Acq. 10/1976 nee GN 2350 Budd #6302 7/1956
Note: The first BC-31 was retired due to a wreck and fire 11/1973.


BC-32 was retired 11/1960 following a wreck 2/1960 at Canim, BC


BC-33 Last of four RDC-3's. Budd #6601 12/1956


Over the years a number of Budd Cars were retired due to accidents on the rugged BC railway.
This along with growing traffic resulted in the acquisition of a number of used RDC's.

BC-21 Acq. 12/1983 (ex SEPTA 9156 nee RDG 9156) Budd # 7004 12/1962

One of three RDC-1's acquired 12/1983 from SEPTA (Philadelphia area commuter service).
BC-22 ex SEPTA 9160 retired April 7, 1994 after hitting a boulder near Mount Currie on December 3, 1993.


Passenger service was ended October 21, 2002 prior to sale of BC Rail to CN Rail on July 15, 2004 All RDC's (9) were retired 11/2002 and disposed of. Two RDC-1's 10 and 11 as well as RDC-3 31:2nd were sold to Oregon Department of Transportation. ODOT used these cars to operate a seasonal tourist train Lewis and Clark Explorer on the Portland & Western between Portland and Astoria along the scenic Columbia River to celebrate the Bicentennial of the famous Lewis and Clark Expedition 1804-1806. It operated for three seasons ending October 3, 2005 after which the cars were disposed of again this time to another tourist train in Oregon the Wallowa Union Scenic Ry. which operated them for about two years before selling them once again. Now, Idaho Northern & Pacific an Idaho-Oregon freight shortline that also operates a tourist train hopes to have them operating once again in 2014.

ODOT 31, 10 and 11 crossing wooden trestle Blind Slough, Oregon. 6/06/2003
Steve Brown/Joseph Testagrose Collection


 

TU108 and TU109 at Seton Portage station. Joseph Testagrose collection

These two 20 passenger Railbus units operate a daily service 34.9 miles between Darcy and Lillooet. It is sponsored by the Seton Lake Indian Band that manages bookings, revenue, marketing and customer service.

BC rail acquired the 2 units from the Aluminum Car Company of Sacramento California.
They are Ford Fairmont Motor Cars converted into 20 seat passenger cars
and were originally to be used for excursions in California.

 



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