Jonathan Lee

Worldly Images

Train of Le Massif de Charlevoix 25th August 2012

The Train of Le Massif de Charlevoix is nothing short of impressive inside, the decor is very modern, with every table being adorned with an i-Pad to guide you through your journey. Unlike most diner trains in the UK there is no dress code, which gives a nice relaxing atmosphere. The food served is fresh and all booked in advance through the Le Massif website when you make your booking. Of course though, we weren’t there for the food, we went solely for the two MLW RS18u’s (1821 & 1868) that Le Massif had overhauled for their operations, which only started in late 2011.

In May 2012 Le Massif introduced an new timetable, offering more trips for people each day, this has resulted in their operation not always using both MLW’s in top & tail style but using one on each set with a cab car. I thought this would pose us a problem in being able to get both MLW’s in, in one day, however after a bit of e-mail tennis with the staff at Le Massif they booked us on the following:

“Discover Baie St. Paul” 0945 Chutes-Montmorency to Baie St Paul then

“Escape to La Malbaie” 0900 Chutes-Montmorency to La Malbaie, forward from Baie St Paul and back to Chutes-Montmorency

This meant we got both MLW’s in and even had the bonus of photographing the first depart with the falls as a back-drop.

It wasn’t a cheap do though and at $948 for three I’d actually deem it very expensive, even when converted to Sterling. We got what we paid for in relation to the train itself and the scenery is fantastic but there is absolutely no noise to be heard from the locos at all. In fact the only thrash we heard all day was when both sets were shunted clear of the station area, during the afternoon downtime, at Baie St Paul.

Still it was an experience, and an enjoyable day at that. The weather was good to us and we got some decent photos at both Montmorency Falls and Baie St Paul. We opted to stay close to the Falls at the Econo Lodge in Boischatel, about a mile up the road, the owner of which, who actually had “General” on the hotel’s cards, even ran us down to the station and picked us up again in the evening, at no cost.

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