Multi Trip (Switzerland – Slovenia – Croatia – Hungary – Germany) August 2014
Having been bowled for doing Slovenia earlier in the year when the storms hit and damaged the wires, which resulted in the Citadella not running, the opportunity to go arose and with even more on offer than usual it would have been rude not to take it while it was there. A nice move fell into place, which involved overnights into Slovenia from Germany, after flying into Switzerland, and out of Slovenia to Hungary, and from there to Berlin where I flew home from. With all the strange things happening in Hungary over the summer timetable it seemed like a safe bet to do something different and there was still plenty on offer and having kept an eye on things leading up to the trip I was even changing my plans/hotels only a few days before heading out.
Booked through British Airways
BA8763 0700 LondonCity – Zurich £78.69
BA0985 1710 Berlin Tegel – Heathrow £43.69
Ljubljana – Hotel Center, Slovenska Cesta 51, Ljubljana 1000 (£112 for a single room for 2 nights) – A 5-10 minute walk from the station it had a large room with one double bed, with no AC but there was a fan, which did the trick overnight. Breakfast wasn’t included and costs 4.50 Euro’s. The hotel reception closes from midnight to 0730 and the hotel only take cash as payment, no cards are accepted. The girl ln the front desk when I arrived was very helpful and had been willing to wait until after midnight to let me in if my train had been late into Ljubljana.
Gyor – Ibis Gyor, Szt Istvanut 10b, Gyor 9021, Gyor (€41.61 for a single room for 1 night, excluding tourist tax of HUF300) – Out of Gyor station to the main road, turn right and it’s a 5 minute walk down the road on the right. A pretty standard Ibis with the usual room layout so at least you know what you’re getting. Free WiFi was offered throughout the hotel.
Booked through EU Rail
5 in 10 Day Global Inter Rail – £234
3 Day Slovenia One Country Inter Rail – £68
Reservations booked thorough Deutsche Bahn UK
EN499 2340 Munich HB – Ljubljana – €33 for a single bed in a two berth sleeper
IC1604 2128 Pivka – Zalaegerszeg – €30 for a single bed in a two berth sleeper
EN476 2005 Budapest Keleti – Berlin HB – €39 for a single bed in a two berth cabin
Tuesday 12th August 2014 (Playing the Voralpen Roulette)
Having been at work all week an 0420 alarm call on my first day off in 8 was just what I needed! It would have actually been a blessing if it had gone off at that time and woke me; unfortunately I was already awake, as is always the case when you’re off on your travels somewhere.
I’d stayed at Aidy’s in Ladywell overnight and found myself wondering around the suburbs of Lewisham at 0445 on this chilly Tuesday morning; it being the first time I’d actually done the walk on my own so I left plenty of time to spare and ended up with 30 minutes at Lewisham shack before the first Docklands departed at 0519.
Getting from Lewisham to City Airport on the DLR isn’t that straightforward and with two changes en-route everything went smoothly; which resulted in me being at security within City Airport by 0600. Other than me stupidly trying to get on the 0700 plane to Dublin instead of my booked 0700 plane to Zurich everything was as simple as it could be at the airport. It wasn’t until my British Airways boarding card was scanned at the Jet Airways counter that I had any clue that I’d been at the wrong gate; I’d just seen Gate 1 against the 0700 time and assumed. Thankfully someone was awake at the airport!
The plane was full and we departed a little late off the stand but as it was only estimated to take 1h10m to get to Zurich it wasn’t much of an issue; and we landed bang on 0930, our booked arrival time. Food en-route was a full English breakfast, which I found a little strange as my girlfriend had flew London City to Zurich with BA a couple of weeks previous and only got a poxy bag of crisps for the whole journey. Still, I wasn’t complaining.
When the pilot announced we’d be landing at the satellite terminal I feared the worst but it was a satellite terminal where planes could dock; although we did have to open the door, once off the air-bridge, ourselves to actually get airside. Having landed at 0930 I was making the decision to flag the 0952 from ZurichAirport to St Gallen just 22 minutes later. Had I actually don the train my day would have got off to a flying start; despite the dud Re460 I’d have had to St Gallen. As it was I’d decided that the most efficient way of playing the Voralpen Roulette was to head to Pfaffikon and view and chew there. The Voralpen Express trains cross at Rapperswil anyway so within an hour you’ve spotted four of the five sets out that day and you’d have to be pretty unlucky for the 5th set to be the one that was sporting the hired in SBB Cargo Re4/4 that day. I was willing to play the game, only as I’d expected 11317 to have been swapped by this point as it had been out for well over a month. Last time I’d played the game at Luzern I lost well and truly!
I’d decided I’d do the 1006 Zurich Flughafen – Ziegelbrucke to Pfaffikon regardless of traction but thankfully it turned out to be a single Re450, 450005, and a dud one at that. Having got a few supplies from the Migros upstairs at the airport I spent the journey, on a very empty Re450, working out what I could do with all the trains I would view if the Re4/4 entered into the arena. I still wanted to do Pfaffikon – St Gallen with Re4/4 and time was running out.
Upon arrival at Pfaffikon the screens on the statin told me that the 1105 to Luzern was EMU and the 1054 to St Galen was loco-hauled so when 456095/092 rolled in with VAE2419 0940 Luzern – St Gallen I did them forward to Rapperswil, expecting the dead to not mater; and it didn’t. EMU’s 081/084 were just preparing to depart as we arrived, which gave me an hour to kill before viewing the next two sets.
I later figured out that doing ned leaps out of Pfaffikon towards Zurich would have been the move, with two out and backs being on offer in between the Voralpen Express trains. What I ended up doing was 450006 to the first shack out of Rapperswil on the Affoltern am Albis road, Jona. Thankfully I wasn’t on a tight plus as it took me a few minutes to negotiate the Krypton Factor that was getting to the other side of the station; the underpass being closed for renovation and it turned out that there was a footbridge further up the station. Unfortunately the move back was a 514 EMU, which I had to do through to Pfaffikon. Had I actually done what I’d planned I’d have had 3 EMU’s as a fill-in between Rapperswil & Pfaffikon!
When 450005 rolled in at Pfaffikon, heading to Zurich on the 1138 departure, I then realised that moves on these trains would have been the better fill-in’s and even though I’d had 450005 to Pfaffikon the fill-in to Richterswil produced a winner on the way back so all was good.
Unfortunately on the even hours at Pfaffikon the xx:05 Voralpen Express departures to Luzern use the same platform, platform 2, as the xx:54 departure before it to St Gallen so the screens didn’t gen me on what both trains were at the same time. I had to wait for 456093/094 to depart with VAE2421 1040 Luzern – St Gallen before the screen confirmed that the 1205 to Luzern was loco-hauled. And at least it wasn’t a unit as I’d half made my mind up, as I wouldn’t be able to get St Gallen in now without wasting the day on it whatever happened, to do it back to Arth Goldau anyway for IR2272 1047 Locarno – Zurich into Zurich, which is booked Re4/4.
While minding my own business at the end of platform 2 I wasn’t immediately aware I the Re4/4 coming round the corner heading VAE2416 1105 St Gallen – Luzern, with what looked to be 446015 on the rear. The moment of truth, was it or wasn’t it 11317. With no postings in over a week to confirm I was half expecting it to be 11317 and was very pleased when the numbers came into view on 11166 indeed.
By Arth Goldau I’d managed to figure out how to remove the bottom part of my combats, which detached with zips, as it was getting warm outside. 11145 turned up, after 11166/446015 had departed for Luzern, vice Re460 on IR2271 1209 Zurich – Locarno. As I didn’t need it I stuck to my original plan and waited for the booked Re4/4 to arrive on IR2272 and abused the free WiFi at Arth Goldau while I waited; posting the good news that 11166 was out in the process.
Re4/4 11154 left Arth Goldau on time with IR2272 and before I’d even had chance to get to the back of the train at Zurich upon arrival, to confirm what my eyes think they saw as we were coming in, Re4/4 11129 was already dropping onto the train; which sorted my next move out, 11129 back to Zug!
We were a couple of minutes late by Zug and 460035 was just departing with the dead back to Zurich so I managed a fill-in on single Re450’s out to Steinhausen Rigiblic on the Zug – Uster circuit. Unfortunately pioneer Re450, 450000, which brought me back in wasn’t new and neither was 460007 which whisked me back to Zurich on IR2348 1435 Luzern – Zurich; to get me back in the game for the afternoon rush-hour.
Having scanned the stop-blocks at Zurich HB when I got back, all I found were dud Re460’s so downstairs for some view and chew it was; this also got off to a slow start as well and I found myself waiting around a bit for things to get going; even having the pleasure of watching 450000 arriving Hardbrucke while returning from Zug with the 1508 Zug – Uster.
I was very pleased to find the line of Re4/4’s near Hardbrucke to have completely different locos in it to those I’d seen a few weeks previous. I’d been wondering if some had been stored and left to rot, especially as the lines had included at least 4 that I needed, but thankfully I’d been wrong.
While viewing “sensible” trains down below Zurich HB I spotted Lion Re420’s 420227/230 on a set between Zurich HB LL & Hardbrucke, both with pantographs down and it actually looked like ‘227 wasn’t attached to the set. 420213/1216 did 19163 1600 Hardbrucke – Schaffhausen but as they were both dud they gave way to more abuse of the Re450’s that were knocking about. This abuse broke briefly to allow me to trot off to the new platform 31 and view Re3535 1642 Zurich HB – Luzern, which was 11155/11191 T&T, this led me back to viewing “sensible” trains on the LL platforms and as the first if the two I was set to view produced a winner I can only confirm that the 1704 Stadelhofen – Baden was again T&T Re420’s. I’d seen the turn with Lion 420’s a few weeks earlier so it must be an addition to the diagrams? 420222 working 19167 1700 Hardbrucke – Schaffhausen, T&T with 420224, can be thanked for me not collecting the numbers of the pair on the Baden train.
Rushing about downstairs came to an abrupt end when I found 11150/11218 at the head of IR3831 1733 Zurich – St Gallen; the latter being a new one. I was glad of the rest o St Gallen and this had been the 5th time I’d done the train and every time I’d needed one of the pair; never both though!
With 30 minutes to kill at St Gallen I abused the free Starbucks WiFi before bording EC197 1816 Zurich – Munich, which I was doing to its destination for my overnight to Ljubljana that night. I’d already booked my flights to Zurich and had plans to do EN415 direct from Zurich to Ljubljana before I realised that by doing EN499 from Munich I’d have a lot better day as it arrived earlier; that was before I found it was being dragged in Austria and would be late at Ljubljana, and of course after I’d booked it!
SBB Cargo 421379 did the honours on EC197, no bonus non-sectored one for me this time. I was straight into the restaurant car, which only had about a dozen folk in it, and spent Euro 16.20 on a cracking bowl of pasta, accompanied with plenty of fresh bread, and an Erdinger beer. It was a very nice way to spend the evening after a decent day on the bash. I was actually glad of the decent food for a change too, and at a reasonable price I thought.
Unfortunately the only snag we had was at St Margarethen where we had to wait for 421392 heading a late EC192 southbound off the single lines north of us. I was only on a plus 55 for my overnight but we were only delayed by about 15 minutes and by the time 218423/426 sped away from Lindau we were only 10 late; the sunset over the sea at Lindau being absolutely cracking as we departed.
By Kempten we were only 3 late and waiting time at Buchloe; the 218’s doing a good job of pulling back some time. The on time arrival into Munich was just as hire loco 182526 was about to depart with a slightly late running CNL418 2241 Munich – Amsterdam. Unfortunately the train is right away Augsburg so there was nothing I could do about it. Gen had recently come out about the 182’s being used to work Emmerich – Amsterdam, internally in Holland; maybe this one had slipped the net due to unavailability of a DB101?
The station area at Munich HB was very busy for a midweek night, most people around were wearing Bayern Munich colours so I assumed there’d been a football match on and as a result of the station having a raft of hungry football fans everywhere had been decimated food wise; with very little being left at the food stalls that were still open. Thankfully my meal on the train had negated the need to eat at Munich.
The stock for my overnight, EN499 2340 Munich – Zagreb, was dragged in by 101032 about 30 minutes before departure. The train runs combined with EN463 Munich – Budapest to Salzburg with the Zagreb portion being at the front and at the very front right behind the engine is a portion for Rijeka (Croatia) which is shunted onto MV481 at Ljubljana; this I hadn’t realised until I’d already made my sleeper reservation to Ljubljana. Something else that had come to light after I’d made my booking was the fact that EN499 would be dragged from Klagenfurt in Austria to Jesenice in Slovenia making it approx. 40 minutes behind its booked time.
As my original plan was a plus 15 onto RG1605 0340 Maribor – Koper at Ljubljana, which was clearly not going to make due to the drag factor, I attempted to get a berth in the Rijeka portion of the train to avoid having to move at Ljubljana. Initially I was told there weren’t any available and when I was sat in my booked 2 berth sleeper cabin in the Zagreb portion the sleeper attendant from the Rijeka portion came to find me and showed me to a two berth sleeper in his portion of the train, where he gave me an upper berth. I ended up sharing with a rather large old guy who had rafts of luggage, his large case taking up most of the floor space and his other ended up going on the middle berth so I went right upstairs to the berth in the rafters; which didn’t seem a bad thing judging by the size of the guy I was sharing with and I went to bed, earplugs in, fearing the worst and expecting some heavy snoring!
|450005||Zurich Flughafen||Pfaffikon||1006 Zurich Flughafen – Ziegelbrucke||18237||SBB Re450|
|456095||Pfaffikon||Rapperswil||0940 Luzern – St Gallen||VAE2419||SOB Re456’s 465095/092 T&T multi|
|450006||Rapperswil||Jona||1114 Rapperswil – Affoltern am Albis||19540||SBB Re450|
|514049||Jona||Pfaffikon||1017 Rafz – Pfaffikon||18539||SBB EMU|
|450005||Pfaffikon||Richterswil||1119 Ziegelbrucke – Zurich Flughafen||18244||SBB Re450|
|450088||Richterswil||Pfaffikon||1106 Zurich Flughafen – Ziegelbrucke||18241||SBB Re450|
|11166||Pfaffikon||Arth Goldau||1105 St Gallen – Luzern||VAE2416||SBB Cargo Re4/4 11166 on hire to SOB T&T with SOB Re446 446015 in multi|
|11154||Arth Goldau||Zurich HB||1047 Locarno – Zurich HB||IR2272||SBB Re4/4|
|11129||Zurich HB||Zug||1409 Zurich HB – Locarno||IR2275||SBB Re4/4|
|450074||Zug||Steinhausen Rigiblic||1438 Zug – Uster||18959||SBB Re450|
|450000||Steinhausen Rigiblic||Zug||1341 Uster – Zug||18954||SBB Re450|
|460007||Zug||Zurich HB||1435 Luzern – Zurich HB||IR2348||SBB Re460|
|450048||Zurich HB LL||Zurich Hardbrucke||1508 Suzach – Brugg||19260||SBB Re450’s 450048/043 in multi|
|450003||Zurich Hardbrucke||Zurich HB LL||1538 Affoltern am Albis – Rapperswil||19563||SBB Re450’s 450003/105 in multi|
|450085||Zurich HB LL||Stadelhofen||1537 Brugg – Suzach||19263||SBB Re450’s 450085/032/054 in multi|
|450106||Stadelhofen||Zurich HB LL||1602 Uetzikon – Baden||18664||SBB Re450’s 450106/087 in multi|
|450017||Zurich HB LL||Zurich Hardbrucke||1608 Suzach – Brugg||19264||SBB Re450’s 450017/098/051 in multi|
|450076||Zurich Hardbrucke||Zurich HB LL||1608 Zug – Uster||18965||SBB Re450’s 450076/083/022 in multi|
|450040||Zurich HB LL||Zurich Hardbrucke||1651 Stadelhofen – Bulach||18066||SBB Re450’s 450040/014 in multi|
|450016||Zurich Hardbrucke||Zurich HB LL||1617 Aarau – Wetzikon||18367||SBB Re450’s 450016/018 in multi|
|420224||Zurich HB LL||Stadelhofen||1700 Zurich Hardbrucke – Schaffhausen||19167||SBB Lion Re4/4’s 420224/222 T&T in multi|
|450026||Stadelhofen||Zurich HB LL||1640 Rapperswil – Winterthur||18766||SBB Re450’s 450026/051 in multi|
|11150||Zurich HB||St Gallen||1733 Zurich HB – St Gallen||IR3831||SBB Re4/4’s 11150/208 in multi|
|421379||St Gallen||St Margrethen||1816 Zurich HB – Munich HB||EC197||SBB Cargo Re421|
|St Margrethen||Lindau HB|
|218423||Lindau HB||Munich HB||1816 Zurich HB – Munich HB||EC197||DB 218’s 218423/426 in multi – Via Kempten|
|1116199||Munich HB||Salzburg||2340 Munich HB – Zagreb Glavni Kolodvor||EN499||OBB 1116 – Via Salzburg, Schwarzach St Veit, Villach, Klagenfurt|
Gen for Tuesday 12th August 2014
(Other than in the moves above)
SOB (Voralpen Express)
11166/446015 VAE2416 1105 St Gallen – Luzern
456095/092 VAE2419 0940 Luzern – St Gallen
EMU’s 081/084 VAE 2414 1005 St Gallen – Luzern, VAE2425 1240 Luzern – St Gallen
456093/094 VAE2421 1040 Luzern – St Galen
456091/096 VAE2423 1140 Luzern – St Gallen
11145 IR2271 1209 Zurich HB – Locarno (Vice Re460)
11155/11191 IR3535 1642 Zurich HB – Luzern
420203/216 19163 1600 Hardbrucke – Schaffhausen
420xxx/xxx 19066 1704 Stadelhofen – Baden
421392 EC192 1633 Munich HB – Zurich HB (from Lindau)
182526 CNL418 2241 Munich HB – Amsterdam
Wednesday 13h August 2014 (From Voralpen roulette to Borovnica drag roulette)
The loco changes in the night would keep me awake far more than I wanted to be that night and when I went to the toilet at about 0130 that killed one bird when I spotted 1116199 through the front doors. This had been the second time I’d done EN499 and the second time it had been an SBB loco out of Munich, which had gone through from Salzburg.
When my alarm woke me at 0320 I was completely away with the fairies. Thankfully the guy in the bottom berth was already awake and sat up in his berth; I hadn’t heard a peep from him sine going to bed! As I’d already spotted the 1116 on the front though I decided there was no need to get out of bed t Villach to view the SZ541 going on as I’d see it at Jesenice when I checked what the 2016 was that had dragged us from Klagenfurt; so I dozed for a bit. Upon arrival into Villach we were immediately shunted to a different platform, splitting from the Venice portion, I can only assume by 1116199 as there wasn’t really enough time to have shunted it off and shunted another engine on.
As we skirted Jesenice I could see two locos at the head of the train as we rounded corners but I wasn’t expecting to find SBB’s 2016045/044 in multi, with no SZ541 on the train; the latter being shunted on as soon as the 2016’s had come off, 541002. At that point the only assumption I could make was that 1116199 had worked to Klagenfurt and the 2016’s had gone on there as booked and if there had been a different engine involved from Villach to Klagenfurt I certainly wasn’t ever going to find out!
Up again at Ljubljana, I was spotting what shunted us across from EN499 to MV481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka. It was 481’s train engine 342025, train 481 having to wait for EN499 for that very shunt move to take place so it can’t miss. The shunt was done very quickly and the brake test on 481 even quicker and we were away from Ljubljana at 0715, only 40 late on 481’s booked times.
Rather than go back to my cabin and potentially disturb bert again I hung around at the front of the train for the 20 minute run to Borovnica to spot what would drag us to Prestranek; the whole point of the trip to Slovenia was to cover the Borovnica drags anyway. Upon arrival the doors were opened and a quick glance into the distance soon had my eyes cast of the green hulk of a 664 that was backing down onto our train, it turned out to be 664111; my first 664 ever and I have to say, for GM’s, it wasn’t a bad loco. It was loud, I’ll give it that, and definitely better than the alternative traction on offer in the area! I spent about 20 minutes bellowing from the 3rd coach, which was where the first opening windows were once our sleeper coaches had been shunted onto the train, and then went back to bed; where I could hear the noise from 664111 coming into the compartment through the air-con vents!
I did manage more sleep thankfully even though bert was up when I got back from bellowing. Passport grips put pay to much more rest after the Slovenian one at Ilirska Bistrica and then the Croatian one at Sapjane. During the latter SZ 342025 was replaced by HZ 1141303 for the run into Rijeka. Upon arrival I was pondering the photo when I noticed a couple of guys high-tail straight across the tracks in front of the loco so I followed suit; the pair turned out to be cranks from Ireland and I had the pleasure of their company back to Borovnica where I was treated to some firsthand education on the Koper line, the drags, restaurants, rail replacement buses and much more and by the time I’d left the guys to it I couldn’t be any more genned up if I’d done three days on the bash and tried to figure things out myself.
I used the first bit of gen the Irish pair had given me to get myself into town in Rijeka, where I decided on a McDonalds breakfast, more to abuse the WiFi and ring my girlfriend using the very handy BT Smart Talk app. Objectives achieved I was sat on the stock an hour before the booked 1155 departure time of MV482 to Ljubljana, which 1141303 was shunted onto about 30 minutes before departure and at the same time 1141380 was shunted from the same siding onto the stock for 4602 1203 Rijeka – Ogulin leaving 1141310 in the siding on its own.
The run back towards Ljubljana was a good one and we weren’t really late at all other than once the drag loco went on. It was interesting to watch the loco change at Sapjane as SZ’s 342025 shunted HZ’s 1141303 off the train then hump shunted it back through the station to get it back to the right side of the voltage change point, marked by a yellow electricity stanchion in the middle of the station area. Once clear of the yellow stanchion the pantograph was up and normal service resumed.
While the passport grips on the return weren’t anything serious the grips on the train were with the gripper checking that I’d filled out my global Inter Rail pass correctly with all the relevant train details and my personal details. If his desperation wasn’t enough there was a second grip later on with a couple of inspectors. There wasn’t much of an issue with my Inter Rail but as the two Irish guys were on staff passes their tickets were scrutinized a little more than they really needed to be, the guard telling them afterwards that it was because they’d used the one box on two consecutive days and the inspectors were making sure it was a valid thing to do.
The moment of truth came as we piled into Prestranek Yard to find a line of three locos beside us, 2016903 heading it with 645003 and 664111 behind it. Thankfully though our loco was already in the shunt position and was backing down before I’d realised what was going on; 664108 in all its glory and for a downhill run the driver absolutely caned it to try and pull back the lost minutes. It sounded a lot better than 664111 and delivered us to Borovnica some 15 late, where I got off not wanting to risk any fiascos going into Ljubljana and miss MV482 coming out at 1510 as a result. The Irish guys continued into Ljubljana as they were heading to Zurich that night and as there didn’t seem to be anything enticing immediately evident on the station area for MV482 they called it a day.
An OBB 2016 was first up for going back north at Borovnica but was thankfully shunted onto a freight not long after we arrived, as was the 664 that was next up; the 664 leaving first in the end and the 2016 not leaving until after MV482 had.
Borovnca wasn’t all go but it was busy. 664108 was the only engine in the shunt line after MV482 had departed and it was followed closely behind by 2016903 which arrived with a southbound freight about 20 minutes behind MV482; it was replaced by 363027 from the line in the station, leaving 363016, 002 and another to be used when required.
Luckily there weren’t any other freight trains thrown into the mix during my short fester at Borovnica and 664108 was duly attached to the front of MV483 when 342022 arrived with it and gave a spirited run up the hill. Unfortunately rain stopped play on the bellowing front for a while so it wasn’t the best bellowing session at all and I’d decided to get off at Rakek too so not as long as it could have been.
The Pizzerija Furman, right by the level crossing at the Koper end of the station, had been brought to my attention by the two Irish guys and I’d decided to give it a go and with the weather being hit and miss it didn’t really matter where I spent the afternoon festering really. The guy serving spoke English, the menu was in English, the food was piping hot and there was plenty of it as well. What more could you want, food, beer and trains only meters away.
I only saw 4 freights in my time at Rakek, which was until the 1749 bus for Sezana departed about 10 late at 1800ish. Three of the trains were 2016’s (083, 085 & 903) and the other 664110, unfortunately heading south and down the hill.
I’d heard from the Irish guys that the SZ rail replacement buses had been seen as much as 15 minutes early and had decided to make sure I was at the statin front for the 1842 departure to Divaca with plenty of time to spare. I ended up on the 1749 departure towards Divaca instead, which was about 10 minutes late with only half a dozen folk on board. The 45 minutes on board the bus went in no time and I was deposited at Divaca to find the station a building site with 664105 on shed and 363001 shut down in one of the platforms. From what I can make out the old platforms have been completely dismissed and new ones are in the process of being built, along with a new underpass and other general improvements to the statin area; the station buildings being untouched.
With 2 hours to kill I used the time to get a bit of shopping from a supermarket and then have a beer at the Orient Express restaurant before thankfully timing it right to get back to the station before the heavens opened and a very noisy thunder storm passed overhead; giving quite a lightening show as it did.
There were quite a few freights on/off the Koper line, most being pairs of SZ Cargo 541’s but one was 2016921 on its own. Although it was only a little late I was directed from the confines of the station canopy, where I’d been keeping dry, towards the correct platform by the station master. I was the only person that boarded RG1604 2017 Koper – Maribor when it arrived with 363021.
Bowled by 645003 at Prestranek I actually breathed a sigh of relief as the next engine in line, for probably MV480 approx 50 minutes behind, was SBB 2016084 and behind that, the only other loco in line, 664108. So with no chance of a winning 664 I headed straight into Ljubljana and got a shift on getting to the HotelCenter when we got there. I didn’t arrive until 2315 as it was and the hotel reception closed at midnight. They were aware I was coming off MV480 arriving at 2330, which was bit tight anyway, but you never know with these places. Still the girl at the reception desk had been the one who’d replied to my mail earlier in the day and confirmed she would have waited for me even if my train had been late.
The hotel is only about 7 minutes from Ljubljana station, the room I was showed to was large and with two single beds (pushed together to make a double but with separate quilts), there wasn’t any air-con but a fan was provided. Free WiFi was included but breakfast wasn’t; the latter coming at a cost of Euro4.50 per day if you want it. Bills at the hotel are also settled in cash with no cards accepted at all and the bill is asked for up front on arrival! Luckily I had enough money to pay for the first night so would settle up the following night.
There wasn’t much messing about when I got to the room, clean clothes out, small bag packed for the following, derance kit out for the stupid o’clock morning shower and alarm set for 0525!
|2016045||Klagenfurt||Jesenice||2340 (12/08) Munich HB – Zagreb Glavni Kolodvor||EN499||OBB 2016’s 2016045/044 in multi|
|541002||Jesenice||Ljubljana||2340 (12/08) Munich HB – Zagreb Glavni Kolodvor||EN499||SZ 541|
|342025||Ljubljana||Borovnica||0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV481||SZ 342, 342025 train engine in SZ, dragged Borovnica – Prestranek by SZ 664, 664111, for 342025 to Sapjane and HZ 1141, 1141303 forward in HZ|
|1141303||Rijeka||Sapjane||1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana||MV482||HZ 1141, 1141303 in HZ, SZ 342, 342025 train engine in SZ, dragged Prestranek – Borovnica by SZ 664, 664108|
|664108||Borovnica||Rakek||1505 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV483||SZ 664 dragging SZ 342022 dit|
|Bus||Rakek||Divaca||1653 Ljubljana – Sezana||2610||Rail replacement service|
|363021||Divaca||Prestranek||2017 Koper – Maribor||R1604||SZ 363, 363021 train engine, dragged Prestranek – Borovnica by LTE Logistik hired 2016, 2016903|
Gen for Wednesday 13th August
1604 0340 Maribor – Koper – 363021 train engine, 2016903 Borovnica – Prestranek
481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka (2h30m late) – 342025 train engine in Slovenia, 664111 Borovnica – Prestranek, 1141303 train engine in Croatia
482 1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana (25 late start due late inward) – 1141303 train engine in Croatia, 664108 Prestranek – Borovnica, 342025 train engine in Slovenia
483 1510 Ljubljana – Rijeka – 342022 train engine, 664108 Borovnica – Prestranek
1605 2017 Koper – Maribor – 363021 train engine, 2016903 Prestranek – Borovnica
480 2040 Rijeka – Ljubljana – Not viewed
Borovnica drag engines – 664104, 108, 110 & 111 2016083, 084, 085 & 903, 645003
Thursday 14th August 2014
The early start wasn’t as bad as I’d thought it might be with 5 and a half hours solid doss doing the trick. I let myself out of the hotel, with reception not opening until 0730, and was on the platform at Ljubljana by 0600 having stopped for croissants on the way.
342022 was sat on the stock for 481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka, obviously having round on arrival the previous night off 480. There wasn’t much else going on at all and as EN499 Munich – Zagreb was being diverted in Austria all week it was nowhere to be seen when 363021 left Ljubljana with 1605 0340 Maribor – Koper; running a few minutes late.
The front coach was almost empty on departure as most folk occupying it got off at Ljubljana, including some idiot who tried to rush past me as I boarded. The result of that being a cracking coffee stain down the clean t-shirt that I’d had on for less than half an hour and would have to wear for the next 18 hours! I looked like a right tramp once it had dried; thankfully the crap weather saved me looking like a vagrant all day and the stain was covered up by my jacket.
The moment of truth at Borovnica came around quickly and in the station area were 664108 being fuelled and 645003 which was next up in the line; a line of one that at the time! In the distance I could see the correct headlight orientation on the loco waiting to back down and 664118 revealed itself moments later. A good start to the day it was; although it was about to take a turn for the worst.
After a good run up the hill I got off at Postojna to wait for 481 behind. I wasn’t even quick enough to get a photo of 664118 before it departed; the station stop being literally 30 seconds so it was a good job I was prepared and at the door ready to get off.
The departure screens at Postonja showed 481 as being 30 late on one side and 80 late on the opposite side of the display. It was to be expected with the diversion and I was thine lower figure was the correct one; however this started to creep up gradually to 45 initially, then 80, then 100 and then the train ultimately disappeared off the screen completely! It was tipping with rain, quite cold and I was stood in the middle of nowhere with shorts and a t-shirt with not really anything else to do other than fester. It wasn’t as though I could even take photos as the cloud cover was keeping it quite dark! Still having watched 664110 head towards Borovnica and then 645003 head through Postonja northbound, shortly after I’d got there, the prospects were looking good for a 664 on 481; assuming there weren’t enough freights to take up the hill before 2016084 came into play…..
It had been relatively warm in Ljubljana when I left but I was so glad of the fact I’d chosen to put my jacket in my bag before I left the hotel and within 30 minutes of being at Postojna I was attaching the bottom bits of my trousers and zipping the jacket right up; not that it made that much difference as I was still cold! I didn’t appear to be the only person waiting for the train to Rijeka and the couple who were just kept looking at the screen in disbelief every time the delay got bigger.
While festering around I was treated to a right load of rubbish to spot on freights; after 664110 had gone through southbound it was wall to wall silence with 645003 and 2016084 heading north and 2016903, 2016085 and 2016083 heading south. At least 2016084 had been taken out of the equation at Borovnica and probably thankfully due to 481 being late and 664108 being fuelled.
481 ultimately turned up 2h33m late; I could hear it coming in the distance so knew it was a 664. Unfortunately for me 664108 turned up, obviously having finished being fuelled before 664110 got in on the game. Still the short run to Prestranek was good and out of the 664’s I’d had up to this point ‘108 seemed to be the better of the bunch.
Once 664108 was detached at Prestranek, and 342022 took over proceedings, I pretty much sank into a corner and tried to get some sleep all the way to Rijeka. The double passport grip at Ilirska Bastrica & Sapjane not helping the cause so much. I we just coming round as we approached Rijeka, the docks being the giveaway sign that we were there, where we arrived at 1150, 2h30m late and only 5 minutes before 482 was due to depart heading back to Ljubljana. I discovered HZ 1141303 on the front after arrival; which duly worked back to Sapjane on 482.
With any chance of getting breakfast being well and truly in the bin I made a bee line straight for the booking office to get a Sapjane – Rijeka return for the following day; this saved any form of riot when being gripped in Croatia as I was only on a one country inter rail while in Slovenia. I’d got one the day before for this trip and it cost Kn 37.20; the return being valid for 4 days.
Luckily there was still room in the front coach when I got back onto the platform and again I skulked into a corner and attempted a bit more doss on the back into Slovenia. It was very strange that the sun was shining in Rijeka and even still shining just north of Pivka but once it was required to be, where all the action was, there was a wall of coldness and cloud stopping play!
A strange sight greeted us at Prestranek, the yard was completely devoid of any freight at all, going in either direction. 2016085 was stabled in the yard, at the Postojna end, and the line waiting their next southbound workings was as follows: 664110, 2016903, 664104 and they were joined by 664105, which arrived on a freight just before we departed. That was a whole line of new 664s and it seemed 664108 was going to be the one that followed me about as it dropped onto the front of 482 while I was spotting engines. It also seemed it was dead set on preventing me from having 664110, which had been immediately in line twice already on this day.
After a good run down the hill 342022 pottered off to Ljubljana about 25 late; this due to the obvious late start from Rijeka after the late inward arrival. The fester wasn’t long and it soon became apparent that I wasn’t going to be in luck for 483 back up the hill as 664118, first up, was started just as we arrived and shunted onto the waiting freight. This left 2016084 on its own in the line and 645003 stabled as though it had just been fuelled, but without a crew.
Shortly before 483 arrived so did 2016085 with a freight. The crew from which got off and straight into 645003; it was started up as 483 arrived, shunted out and straight onto the train. This actually kept the loco sequence I’d written down in order for the day and a fresh crew came out of the mess room to get on 2016085 which then departed towards Ljubljana with the train it had brought in.
645003 silently delivered me to Rakek, where I decided to do lunch again; the weather still being crap and I was starving after missing breakfast at Rijeka. There wasn’t anywhere near as much through Rakek as during the same period the previous day, I only saw 2016084 head north and 664105 hammer through going south while I was waiting for the bus to Divaca.
While waiting for the bus I got talking to an English girl who’d been waiting for over an hour for a bus towards Ljubljana, she’d ridden over 100km to Rakek and had expected there to be trains to get her back towards Ljubljana. She was very concerned that the bus driver wouldn’t take her bike and with it being poor weather and getting darker she was concerned about the roads. The prospect of a 100km ride in the rain and while it was dark wouldn’t be tempting me too much either. The relief on her face when a bus pulled into the car park was soon wiped away when it turned out to be my bus to Divaca, about 15 minutes late; the same as the previous day. Her bus should have gone 25 minutes before mine turned up, bless her. I didn’t pass any Ljubljana bound buses en-route to Divaca, I was wondering if they were all messed up due to whatever fiasco had occurred on the motorway, which I’d spotted from the train heading towards Borovnica earlier. Whatever it was there were emergency services involved and the Ljubljana bound carriageway was completely closed!
As the skies were clearing at Divaca I managed to get a photo of 363001 in glorious sunshine, which was stabled in exactly the same place as it had been the previous day. I heard a freight approaching in the distance too and did a bit of trespassing to get a decent photo of 541013 as it headed through towards Koper with a container train. Then it was off to the Orient Express for a beer to pass the time before waiting patiently back at the station for 363021 to arrive from Koper with 1604.
1604 wasn’t as empty as the previous night but it wasn’t full and there was space in compo’s in the front coach. My anticipation at Prestranek was short lived as the incorrect lighting arrangement approached the front of the train, the headlights from 363021 revealing the blue of 2016903. The good news was that I couldn’t seem to fail if I got off at Postojna as in the line were 664110 and 664103 and stabled in the yard, at the Postojna end, was 664105. The only other engine there turned out to be 664118, which was waiting to depart when we arrived. The three in line were all new so if I got off for 480 at Postojna I surely couldn’t fail?
We had a delayed departure from Prestranek due to smoke coming from one of the electrical cubicles underneath the bike coach, right behind the engines. The drivers from 645003 and 664105 seemed to sort it out before departure and we were away about 15 late; the crew on 664118 in the yard clearly getting impatient while waiting as they kept blowing the horn as if to ask to go first while the crews dealt with our problem. It was right on our tail at Postojna, where thankfully I only had a 35 minute fester, as opposed to the 3 hours I’d been treated to that morning.
What did concern me a little was the fact that 664105 came hammering through about 10 minutes behind 664118 and at about departure time for 480, 664110 came bounding into platform 3 and was stopped at the end. Literally moments later 664103 came rolling in with 480 about 60 seconds behind so whether there’d been some wrong direction running from Prestranek I don’t know but it went into platform 4 vice 3. It just shows though that you never know what might happen with the freights as when I departed Prestranek 35 minutes earlier there were no other freights there and here I was with the 3rd in line loco on 480 only 35 minutes later. 2016085 would have been next in line after that having gone towards Prestranek shortly after I’d got off 1604 at Postojna.
Pleased with the days bash I was looking forward to getting back to the hotel and was wary that I had to go via a bank to get some money and pay for my second night’s stay. Any hopes of being there before reception closed at midnight went out of the window at Borovnica after we sat outside the statin for 10 minutes. It became evident why when we rolled in when I spotted a shunter at the points. When we got into the station a shunter came out to take 664103 off but was accosted by the station master, who took him down to the points at the Ljubljana end of the station with him. 10 minutes later we set off with 664103 still attached and working the train through to Ljubljana; I can only assume this was to prevent further delay to the train as the portion at the rear had to be shunted onto EN498 Zagreb – Munich at Ljubljana and 541019 was waiting to do the honours when we arrived at 0005, 35 late!
I did stop at a bank on my way back to the hotel but the reception was well and truly closed when I got there. I was half expecting to find a note in the room, or an envelope of some sort to leave the money in, but there was nothing and I was buggered if I was leaving 70 Euro’s lying about for just anyone to pick up; especially without any form of receipt, so that was something to sort on another day; or actually later on, on this day as it was. All I was concerned with was getting my shit together, ready for the next morning, and getting into bed.
|363021||Ljubljana||Borovnica||0340 Maribor – Koper||R1605||SZ 363, 363021 train engine, dragged from Borovnica by SZ 664, 664118|
|664108||Postojna||Prestranek||0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV481||SZ 342, 342022 train engine in SZ, dragged to Prestranek by SZ 664, 664108, HZ 1141, 1141303 train engine in HZ|
|1141303||Rijeka||Sapjane||1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana||MV482||HZ 1141, 1141303 in HZ, SZ 342, 342022 train engine in SZ, dragged Prestranek – Borovnica by SZ 664, 664108|
|223003||Borovnica||Rakek||1505 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV483||Hired MRCE Dispolok ER20-003, 223003 (numbered 645003 by SZ), dragging SZ 342, 342005 dit|
|Bus||Rakek||Divaca||1653 Ljubljana – Sezana||2610||Rail replacement service|
|363021||Divaca||Prestranek||2017 Koper – Maribor||R1604||SZ 363, 363021 train engine, dragged from Borovnica by LTE Logistik hired 2016903|
|664103||Postojna||Ljubljana||2040 Rijeka – Ljubljana||MV480||SZ 664 dragging SZ 342005 dit throughout|
Gen for Thursday 14th August 2014
1604 0340 Maribor – Koper – 363021 train engine, 664118 Borovnica – Prestranek
481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka (2h30m late) – 342022 train engine in Slovenia, 664108 Borovnica – Prestranek, 1141303 train engine in Croatia
482 1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana (25 late start due late inward) – 1141303 train engine in Croatia, 664108 Prestranek – Borovnica, 342022 train engine in Slovenia
483 1510 Ljubljana – Rijeka – 342005 train engine, 645003 Borovnica – Prestranek
1605 2017 Koper – Maribor – 363021 train engine, 2016903 Prestranek – Borovnica
480 2040 Rijeka – Ljubljana – 342022 train engine, 664103 Prestranek – Ljubljana (went through to save time due to points issues at Borovnica)
Borovnica drag engines – 664103, 104, 105, 108, 110 & 118, 2016083, 084, 085 & 903, 645003
Friday 15th August 2014 (A day of dilemmas; and a Bank Holiday in Slovenia)
At 0545 my first dilemma of the day came along, in fact it was really two rolled into one; what to do about paying for the hotel and where to leave the keys, which I needed to get out of the door with. From inside the hotel there was no access out of hours at all to the reception and no way of posting the keys through a letter box or anything like that and outside was the same. In the end, while holding the door open with my foot as it closed on a catch, I left the keys on the floor outside the door that led to reception. No money was left at all and the hotel would have to contact me if they needed to get it; leaving 70 Euros just lying around wasn’t the done thing so we’d see how that one went.
On the way to the station dilemma number two came my way when I couldn’t find anywhere open to grab some breakfast; luckily there was one place right over the road from the station but could I hell as like find anywhere open to sell me a coffee.
By 0634 dilemma number three was thrown at me; my brain could hardly cope with all the dilemmas after not much doss; continually! Still this one was brought about by the fact that 1605 0340 Maribor – Koper was 30 late and as a result wouldn’t arrive until after the booked departure time of 481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka. Ironically this morning was the first that EN499 hadn’t been diverted coming into Slovenia, which was delivered to Ljubljana on time by 541019, and 481 would have been bang on time for a change but after a bit of platform toing and froing some guy confirmed that 1605 would depart first, as it rolled into the platform at 0640 with 363021 for a change. I’d been joined that morning by another crank, who I found asking the guard on 481 exactly the same question I’d asked him 2 minutes previous; which train would depart first, Koper or Rijeka. Kieran was his name and he was only in the country for the day and was doing the return Koper through to Hungary that night, just like I was.
Once we’d managed to count the 11 coaches on 1605 correctly we got into an empty compartment at the front of the train and hoped for the best at Borovnica. The weather in Ljubljana, for the second day running, was absolutely dismal and it was pouring with rain. Still, through the rain at a desolate Borovnica we could see the correct headlight formation on the 664 that was about to back down onto 1605 and other than that the cupboard was bare on the green front with 645003 next up and odds on to do 481, which would be immediately behind, and 2016903 was behind that.
664105 was efficiently attached, by a shunter with an umbrella, and the climb began with the biggest load of the three days while I’d been there. The rain wasn’t helping bellowing matters but the windows were open all the way. The 664 certainly struggled a bit more than with the lighter loads but it didn’t make too much of a meal of things, even with the rain. There was no slipping at all.
Even though I knew what was coming behind I got off at Postojna while Kieran went through to Pivka to do buses to get 644020 in on the Autovlak. I only had to wait 10 minutes for 481, which was 645003 with 342005 dead inside, not 3 hours as I had done the previous day; the weather was pretty much the same though yet strangely, again just like the previous day, just the other side of Pivka the skies began to clear and the closer we got to Croatia the warmer it became and by Rijeka it was a scorching morning; the coat had to be packed back into the bag before I walked up to McDonalds to abuse the WiFi. The line-up t Prestranek when we passed through had been as follows: 664103, 2016084, 664105 and 664118 in the yard at the Postojna end.
HZ’s 1141303 had done the honours on 481 from Sapjane and like 363021 on 1605/4 it seemed to be glued to 481/2/3/0 from the Rijeka end. Thankfully I’d decided to get a seat on 482 quite early, the train was full and standing by the time it departed Rijeka and I was guessing it was due to the bank holiday? I’d been joined in my compartment by a different crank for the day, Nigel Hughes from North Yorkshire, who I recognized as a Yorkshire crank but didn’t really know.
Of course the weather slowly deteriorated as we headed towards Slovenia and it was quite miserable and cold by the time the moment of truth came around for 482 and it looked set to get even more miserable when we rounded the corner into an empty Prestranek to find the line consisting of no less than 5 664’s, 104, 110, 108, 103, 105 with 645003 bringing up the rear. This would undoubtedly mean that whatever was sat outside the station waiting to drop on had to be silent; or would it……
30 seconds went by and nothing appeared from behind the trees then all of sudden 664104 burst into life and shunted forward in the line, bringing 664110 with it; both of which were crewed and running at that point. I wasn’t quite believing what I was seeing, was I about to get the remaining two 664’s out that I needed, in one go? Unfortunately not! The two were split after shunting forward and 664104 was attached to 482 to work it down the hill.
Unlike the other 664’s I’d had on the drags 664104 had a different noise to offer as it had a very high pitched screaming from its turbos which became more audible when power was shut off and there wasn’t the thrash to drown it out. It must have been strange s even a normal in the compartment in front of us stuck her head out of the window and commented to us that it didn’t sound like the normal locos! Putting pay to the fact that normal don’t pay attention to the locos on their trains. I was withered by her comments anyway.
Unlike most downhill runs this one was quite as fast or as thrash-tastic due to there being single line working from Postojna with a possession on the opposite rod for track works. Within the possession were diggers and a few other machines at work, all of which had their wheels in the 4ft and 6ft, not 4th and cess so you can imagine how close they were s we passed by. There was a 30kmph cover speed on to protect the workers and machines though; these being the same machines that I’d spotted that morning on the embankment out of the way. One machine had actually slipped down the embankment a short way and a machine operator was trying to drag it back up with the bucket on his digger; in full view of the 11 coaches of 1605 as we passed by slowly!
As there had been five 664’s at Prestranek we were expecting a wall of silence at Borovnica to work back on 483. Kieran, who’s move to the Autovlak had been scuppered by the bank holiday and now had to go vi Ljubljana and Jesenice to get to it, had got on 482 at Rakek and had seen 664118 head south and bugger me if it wasn’t at the head of the line waiting to work the next train north as we rolled into Borovnica. What was even stranger was the fact that the only other loco there was 645003. We’d overtaken 2016083 coming down the hill at Postojna and it arrived before 483 departed but 2016084 & 085 were no nowhere to be seen so maybe the bank holiday, possession and lack of freight traffic had allowed them to be removed from the circuit for exams? Who knows? There weren’t any complaints from us though; 664118 just had to wait 30 minutes and we were home dry, but not in the literal sense and it was pissing it down!
Our short wait in the pouring was rewarded with 664118 shunting out 10 minutes before 483 arrived and sitting at the signal poised to back down; and it backed down onto the next train to arrive which was thankfully 483, with 342022 at its helm. While it was pleasing that a 664 was on the train the run up to Postojna wasn’t the best thanks to the 30kmph restriction due to the possession between the two points.
Nigel had got off at Logatek to check in to his hotel so I’d been on my own to Postojna. The weather simply didn’t know what to do when I got there; it was pouring with rain yet the station buildings were lit up by glorious sunshine. The cold air had turned instantly to warm in the sun and eventually it did stop raining to give way to a promising afternoon as the clouds parted for the first time in two days!
My plan was simple, bus to Koper for 1604 throughout to Zalaegerszeg. The 1649 bus was about 15 late away from Postojna, mainly due to there being a toilet stop there, but by Koper we were 15 minutes early. I can’t be sure as I was dozing the whole way with music on but I think we might have missed the stops out between Divaca and Koper and run direct?
It was a nice afternoon in Koper, 363021 was sat in the platform with the stock for 1604 and there were plenty of people around; there just didn’t seem to be much near the station though and I was in need of food. The nearest place I found being McDonalds, which would have done at a push, but thankfully there was a restaurant a little further along the same road, away from the station, which served up a decent bowl of pasta with Bolognese sauce. It was a fish restaurant which thankfully served something other than fish.
363021 was prepared for the off at about 1930. I had a reservation for 1604 in a two berth sleeper cabin, booked through DB in the UK. It was only from Pivka though but there was no problem getting into my berth at Koper and the bonus being I had it all to myself. Thankfully it was in one of the MAV coaches and not the Russian one next to it as there’d been bad reports regarding the Russian one and a lack of con; bizarrely my coach was completely devoid of air-con and was about as real as they come with opening windows throughout. This allowed for a nice chilled evening meander down the hill from Koper to Divaca with the windows open, admiring the scenery and sunset.
The sleeper attendant was very helpful and once I’d found him, playing cards in the empty 1st class coach with the attendants from the Russian coach, he was more than willing to lock my compartment up while I went to the front of the train at Divaca; 10 coaches away!
Nigel was on the platform waiting so at least I had some company for my last journey in Slovenia. The line-up at Prestranek upon arrival was 2016083, 664xxx (too dark to see from wrong side of coach), 2016903 & 645003; that was everything that was silent and out that day in the one place. The question being; would it be 2016083 off the front of the line, where the loco had come from for 483 earlier? Thankfully not and I could hear the 664 dropping on before I could see it appear from behind the trees. I had to get out to see which one it was and the guard didn’t seem to have an issue with it, despite us being in the yard. 664104, with its random turbos, did the honours down to Borovnica and it was a good run too, the possession having been handed back so we ran correct road. As Nigel was getting off at Logatek I retired to my berth after Rakek, alarm set for 0100 to see what went off at Maribor when we arrived.
|363021||Ljubljana||Borovnica||0340 Maribor – Koper||R1605||SZ 363, 363021 train engine, dragged from Borovnica by SZ 664, 664105|
|223003||Postojna||Prestranek||0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV481||SZ 342, 342005 train engine in SZ, dragged to Prestranek by Hired MRCE Dispolok ER20-003, 223003 (numbered 645003 in SZ), HZ 1141303 train engine in HZ|
|1141303||Rijeka||Sapjane||1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana||MV482||HZ 1141, 1141303 in HZ, SZ 342, 342005 train engine in SZ, dragged Prestranek – Borovnica by SZ 664, 664104|
|664118||Borovnica||Postojna||1505 Ljubljana – Rijeka||MV483||SZ 664 dragging SZ 342022 dit|
|Bus||Postojna||Koper||1540 Ljubljana – Koper||2752||Rail replacement service|
|363021||Divaca||Prestranek||2017 Koper – Maribor||R1604||SZ 363, 363021 train engine, dragged Prestranek – Borovnica by SZ 664, 664104|
Gen for Friday 15th August 2014
1604 0340 Maribor – Koper – 363021 train engine, 664105 Borovnica – Prestranek on load 11
481 0635 Ljubljana – Rijeka – 342005 train engine in Slovenia, 645003 Borovnica – Prestranek, 1141303 train engine in Croatia
482 1155 Rijeka – Ljubljana – 1141303 train engine in Croatia, 664104 Prestranek – Borovnica, 342005 train engine in Slovenia
483 1510 Ljubljana – Rijeka – 342022 train engine, 664118 Borovnica – Prestranek
1605 2017 Koper – Maribor – 363021 train engine, 664104 Prestranek – Borovnica
480 2040 Rijeka – Ljubljana – Not viewed
IC1247 0200 Maribor – Zalaegerszeg (16/08) – 664109 Maribor – Hodos, MAV 433187 Hodos – Zalaegerszeg
Train then shunted into IC959 0524 Zalaegerszeg – Budapest Deli (16/08) and worked forward by 431078
Borovnica drag engines – 664103, 104, 105, 108, 110 & 118, 2016083 & 903, 645003 (No sign of 2016084 & 085 all day)
Saturday 16th August 2014 (Yo-yoing at Tapolca)
Having not had a great deal of doss on this trip at all I was less than impressed that we were about 40 late into Maribor; which lost me more doss while I only dare doze to make sure I got the 664 that backed on when we arrived. Thankfully it was sat in the adjacent platform waiting when we pulled in and 664109 then shunted us from one platform to the other before departing. Luckily the earplugs kept the noise from 664109 out, as we were second from the engine upon departure from Maribor, where we departed about 15 late.
My sleep was rudely interrupted again by the 0415 alarm going off for the 0431 arrival into Zalaegerszeg. We were only just departing Hodos though, still 15-20 late which resulted in me missing the 0440 Zalaegerszeg – Celldomolk; which I’d planned to do and have a spin between Celldomolk and Boba. While festering in the waiting area, which was a lot warmer than on the platform, at 0520 I realised I could do IC959 0524 Zalaegerszeg – Budapest Deli to Ajka, which went round Boba avoider, for the same train I’d make at Boba off the 0603 ex Zalaeherszeg. The stupid thing about that was that the stock off IC1247 0200 Maribor – Zalaegerszeg is attached to IC959 to go forward to Budapest so I could have actually stayed in my sleeper berth and managed about 2 hours extra doss; definitely a doh! Moment. 433187 had worked IC1247 into Zalaegerszeg and 431078 had immediately back IC959’s normal coaches onto the stock from it.
When 431154 arrived into Boba 433187 was already there with the 0603 Zalaegerszeg – Boba, about to back its stock onto the Budapest bound train in the opposite platform, headed by GySev’s 430323. Correct move played all round there with 433187 producing; it just wasn’t worked out in time to accumulate more doss!
The plan for the day was centred around doing the M61 on the Summer Budapest – Tapolca turn and in the process yo-yoing up and down Lake Balaton between Tapolca and Revfulop nedding in M41’s. I’d like to say the day started quite promisingly when 418197 arrived into Celldomolk with 18807 0642 Szombthely – Kaposvar, as the 418/1’s are supposed to be better than the 2’s and 3’s, but it didn’t and 418197 was just as crap as the rest of the M41’s; it barely even rattled under full power!
I bailed off at Sumeg to do what turned out to be 418306 behind on 19607 0725 Szombathely – Budapest Deli forward to Tapolca, where I found 418313 waiting in the platform with the next Budapest Deli train, 9707 0940 ex Tapolca and shortly before it left 418305 connected into it as it passed through with 19809 0711 Gyor – Keszthely; and then the yo-yoing began….
There isn’t much in the way of food at Tapolca, with a café outside the station and a stall near the booking office selling fresh pastries. Thankfully the woman doing the selling returned before the 0940 Budapest departed and I loaded up on pastries for breakfast!
It was a nice clear morning and during my morning moves to/from Revfulop people were already setting themselves up on the lake’s edge and plenty more folk were using the trains to get about to the spot they wanted to get to. It looked like Badacsony was the place to be at the Tapolca end of the north shore of Lake Balaton.
I’d worked a move out to get all but one of the M41 turns in on the Budapest – Tapolca turns which included getting the M61 in on its way into Tapolca and then doing it back out of Tapolca on the 1540 towards Budapest. Al the diagrams seemed to stick to plan except Day 4 & Day 8 with 418320 working 8802 0901 Kaposvar – Tapolca (Day 4) then 9705 1340 Tapolca – Budapest Deli (Day 8) and 418324 working 9702 0905 Budapest Deli – Tapolca (Day 8) then 16906 1256 Tapolca – Zahony.
The sun was glorious when M61 2761017 arrived into Revfulop with a buffet right behind the engine and plenty of heads hanging out of the window; most of which seemed to be Hungarian cranks with a few English accents thrown in. My status of never having had Nohab kept me out of the front coach, respect where it’ due and all that, but I have to say I was massively disappointed when the M61 set off, when bellowing from the front of the 2nd coach. It made hardly any noise at all and I’d go so far as to say that some M41s were louder; and my conclusion wasn’t because I’d been having loud GM’s in Slovenia either, it was based on the facts coming into my ears at the time. I can’t dispute the fact that the thing looked good in the glorious sunshine but just because an engine looks good doesn’t make it rateable at all; for me it’s the noise it makes that counts and there wasn’t much being emitted from 2761017. I have to say it smelt good though…
Yo-yoing complete by 1505 at Tapolca I was loaded up into the buffet car at the front of the train for the run back towards Budapest. I’d had to move a load of folks out of the way of the before boarding to enable photos to be taken. It seemed these folk were involved with the engine and should have better than to get in the way of a cranks photo; still they moved when asked politely to do so, so I wasn’t complaining. Not until the hordes of people came off a connecting train and the sun went in!
My opinion of Nohabs wasn’t changed at all on the run back to Szekesfehervar; in fact I was that disappointed I was discussing the fact with someone back home via text, when not falling asleep; the latter being literally not due to the lack of thrash. We’d been a little over 10 late before Balatonfured but the amount of people getting on/off there prevented us picking much time up in the booked 7 minute fester and I only just made the 1730 Budapest Deli – Nagykanizsa at Szekesfehervar; no thanks to the almighty stagger that it is into the station there.
I’d intended to go to Siofok to do 1988 1913 Siofok – Gyor throughout but as we were 5 late at Lepseny I bailed out for the safer move of the 1919 from Lepseny back into Gyor for a plus hour there vice the plus 13 at Siofok.
The mapper had shown 408203 on 1987 0658 Gyor – Siofok in the morning, with 431125 working forward to Siofok. I’d wanted to cover 1988 just in case it produced a 630 vice 431. I’d seen 630019 on the mapper with 1987 the previous week and there had been other reports of a 630 on the turn but if it was a 630 I wasn’t going to be having it as the train’s last stop before Szekesfehervar was the stop before Lepsany, Siofok side, and there was no way of getting to it.
I was beginning to think I was going to be royally shit out when the 1919 to Budapest hadn’t turned up 20 minutes after it should have gone as in theory 1988 should have been through Lepseny about 5 minutes later. Thankfully it wasn’t and when 851 1650 Nagykanizsa – Budapest Deli departed 30 late with 480013 I was a relieved man. Not that I’d have missed 1988 at Szekesfehervar at 30 late as it was booked to sit there 21 minutes while it was re-engined, but still I’d already worked out a back-up to get me to Gyor just in case; via Kelenfold! Ironically the back-up, which was EN463 Budapest Keleti – Munich with 470007, overtook us on the approach to Gyor and arrived first!
At Szekesfehervar chaos seemed to have descended on the place with people missing trains all over the place. These were all connections they should have made, despite arriving on late trains though. The complete and utter lack of electronic displays at Szekesfehervar and the fact that trains weren’t arriving on their correct platforms are to blame. Even the fact that a guard, clearly waiting for his allocated train, didn’t have a clue where trains were going from meant people missed their trains. I only knew that mine hadn’t arrived at that point due to the fact that 408203 was sat around the back of the station waiting its arrival.
When 1988 departed for Gyor, 10 late, I struggled to understand why the train actually ran in the first place as there couldn’t have been more than a dozen people on it on departure from Szekesfehervar and I had the whole front coach to myself for the majority of the way. I’d hoped that 408203 might save the day in the thrash stakes but I was so wrong; it was worse than the quieter M41’s, topping off what was in essence a very quiet day indeed on the thrash stakes.
I spent most of the journey to Gyor getting my crap in order and up to date, which passed the journey nicely. At Gyor it was a short walk down the road (out of the station to the main road and turn right) to the Ibis Gyor. I was checked in quickly and the much needed relaxation that a proper bed offered, for more than 5 hours, was bliss!
|664109||Maribor||Hodos||0200 Maribor – Zalaegerszeg||IC1247||SZ 664, 664109 to Hodos for MAV 433, 433187 forward|
|431078||Zalaegerszeg||Ajka||0524 Zalaegerszeg – Budapest Deli||IC959||MAV 431 – via Boba avoiding line|
|431154||Ajka||Celldomolk||0628 Ajka – Szombathely||9010||MAV 431|
|418197||Celldomolk||Sumeg||0642 Szombathely – Kaposvar||18807||MAV 418|
|418306||Sumeg||Tapolca||0725 Szombathely – Budapest Deli||19607||MAV 418|
|418313||Tapolca||Revfulop||0940 Tapolca – Budapest Deli||9707||MAV 418|
|418332||Revfulop||Tapolca||0735 Budapest Deli – Tapolca||1972||MAV 418|
|418327||Tapolca||Revfulop||1140 Tapolca – Budapest Deli||19705||MAV 418|
|2761017||Revfulop||Badacsony||0935 Budapest Deli – Tapolca||19702||MAV M61|
|418324||Badacsony||Revfulop||1256 Tapolca – Zahony||16906||MAV 418|
|418330||Revfulop||Badacsonyors||1105 Budapest Deli – Tapolca||9704||MAV 418|
|418320||Badacsonyors||Revfulop||1340 Tapolca – Budapest Deli||9705||MAV 418|
|418306||Revfulop||Tapolca||0955 Szolnok – Tapolca||16907||MAV 418|
|2761017||Tapolca||Szekesfehervar||1540 Tapolca – Budapest Deli||19703||MAV M61|
|433268||Szekesfehervar||Lepseny||1730 Budapest Deli – Nagykanizsa||846||MAV 433|
|480013||Lepseny||Szekesfehervar||1650 Nagykanizsa – Budapest Deli||851||MAV 480|
|408203||Szekesfehervar||Gyor||1913 Siofok – Gyor||1988||MAV 408|
Gen for Saturday 16th August 2014
MAV 418’s (by diagram day as per Szekesfehervar 418-3 Summer diagrams)
418328 – Day 1, 418327 – Day 2, 418332 – Day 3, 418320 – Day 4 (then onto Day 8 at Tapolca), 418306 – Day 5, 418313 – Day 6, 418330 – Day 7 (except 19703 as worked by the Nohab), 418324 – Day 8 (then onto Day 4 at Tapolca)
Note Day’s 4 & 8 swapped over at Tapolca 418320 arrived on 8802 (Day 4) then worked 9705 (Day 8) and 418324 arrived on 9702 (Day 8) and departed on 16906 (Day 4)
418305 19809 0711 Gyor – Keszthely
430323 (GySev) 909 0605 Szombathely – Budapest Deli
433187 9509 0603 Zalaegerszeg – Boba (after working into Zalaegerszeg with IC1247 from Hodos)
Sunday 17th August 2014 (Best laid plans…..)
I was up at 0600, which was a lay-in compared to previous morning alarm calls on this trip, and walking to the station by 0640, feeling a lot fresher than I had when I walked into the Ibis some 8 hours previous.
I only had 4 plans to choose from on this particular morning, plan A had been to do the 0658 Gyor – Siofok if it had been an M62 but unfortunately there was no luck on that front, despite there having been during the previous week. Plan B had been to do an IC move out and back on the GySev 651s but the previous day’s lack of thrash put me off going for yet more overrated engines that didn’t make much noise so it was a toss-up between plans C & D, which was to either cover the 418 turns on the Satoraljaujhely branch in the hope that an M62 was out vice, which seemed to be a regular thing recently with 628326 & 628332 both having been out in the last 4 days. The last option was to cover the Kiskunfelegyhaza – Szeged 460 turns which had produced at least 5 different 460’s during the previous 7 days from my mapper observations, 460003, 013, 024, 035 & 057 all featuring with 003 being new to the electric gala that was the Szeged locals as far as I was aware, the other 4 all having already featured this year. Decisions, decisions?
Once I’d spotted 408203, already coupled to the stock for 1987 0658 Gyor – Siofok I went to the booking office to get an IC reservation for IC919 0600 Szombathely – Budapest Keleti and no sooner had I got onto the platform to await its arrival did it drop to 10 late on the screen which resulted in EN463 Munich – Budapest Keleti arriving and departing first. With MAV 470006 right there in front of me I wasn’t going to flag it so did it to Tatabanya and pondered exactly what to do en-route.
I only really got off to use the WiFi in my reserved IC coach on the way to Keleti; this actually swinging the ball further in one direction than the other. Thankfully the mapper on the phone held out for as long as I needed it to as sometimes it can be very, very slow on board MAV trains depending on the WiFi signal strength.
I’d already checked the 418’s on the Satoraljaujhely branch at the Ibis in Gyor to find three 418s out, a second check en-route to Keleti revealed another two 418’s and no random M62 spare at Satoraljaujhely poised to work back with something. What really swung it was the fact that new kid on the block 460054 was one of the locos out on the Kiskunfelegyhaza – Szeged trains and even more bizarre was the fact that the other turn was 431218. It was a bit of a waste of a 431 if you ask my opinion; and MAV were clearly short of them on this particular day as I found out by chance later in the day. My mind was made up; I was Kiskunfelegyhaza bound for the 1234 departure to Szeged, hoping that 431218 would be swapped for a 460 by the time I arrived.
GySev’s 1116063 was the traction for IC919 and I decided on getting off at Kelenfold to enable me to get round to Kobanya Kispest on one of the Szekesfehervar – Kobanya Kispest locals, which depart Kelenfold at xx:16. In the meantime I actually had enough time for a fill-in move to Deli and back, it was tight but there was a second train I could do back from Deli if the plus 1 missed. While waiting I spotted a Floyd 86, 450007, being dragged by a Floyd Sulzer, 609003, both in their corporate black colour scheme. Unfortunately I didn’t get to hear the Sulzer pull away as it only pottered away from the signal as my train was arriving with 431177 for me to ned in.
The plus 1 made at Deli, just, and as 431290 was pulling into Kelenfold with 9052 0900 Budapest Deli – Veszprem 609003 was backing into the yard with 450007. I assumed they were in the vicinity to work a freight away but couldn’t see exactly what due to all the wagons being in the way.
My pair of flirts round to Kobanya Kispest were in on time but departed 10 late for no real reason. This delayed the start of my Nyugati based spinning a little but dropped me right into new 431114 heading towards Nyugati with 6209 0546 Nyiregyhaza – Budapest Nyugati. It was quite a successful couple of hours, until the train I needed to be on to Kiskunfelegyhaza, the 1053 Nyugati – Szeged, turned up with a dud 431230.
I couldn’t complain though, the train was pretty empty in the front coach and it was bang on time into Kiskunfelegyhaza; where I thought I’d been completely bowled. When I’d done the move three weeks earlier the Szeged local had gone out of the platform nearest the station buildings, which was occupied by a Bzmot and trailer on this particular day. Thankfully I soon clapped eyes on the one coach that formed 7114 1234 to Szeged and 431218 was sat at the head of it.
With 4 people on board from Kiskunfelegyhaza I got off at the longest named station I could find on the route just so I could take forever writing my moves up; or so it seemed anyway. It happened that Petofiszallasi Tanyak was the shack before where the two locals would cross and common sense prevailed. My fester there though had me wishing I’d got off at the shack before as the whole time I was there a bunch of dogs in the garden by the station building were constantly barking at me; for the whole 16 minutes. It was enough to drive anyone mad and no matter how much I shouted and growled back at them they simply didn’t get tired of constantly barking at me, even when I was out of sight and quiet! I stopped short of starting to throw ballast at them but my mind was picturing it let me tell you. 460054 saved me from being eaten by the savage hounds in the end and thankfully arrived to collect me, the only person at the station with the long name, on time.
431357, the engine on IC715 1245 Szeged – Budapest Nyugati, was equally as dud as the engine I’d had out and the train wasn’t as good at keeping time as the outbound had been. It was a good journey back though and I was subjected to questioning about the typing I was doing on my Surface.
In my compartment two teens were travelling home with the mother of one of them and their curiosity seemed to get the better of them, either that or they’d managed to pluck up the courage to speak to me in English? They thought for some reason I was a writer, bless them. Once the conversation started though both the teens spoke good English but the mother hadn’t practiced hers in 25 years so her questions had to be translated. It turned out they’d all been on a family weekend to Szeged and were travelling home to Szombathely; the total journey time being 7h30m for them and something they seemed in good spirits about. This was the first proper conversation I’d had with local Hungarians and I got from it that most that speak English are scared to use it and don’t practice it enough after school & college to keep up their fluency. The older generations don’t widely speak English as it wasn’t taught at school as standard back then but it is now. Their company was a pleasure to have had on the journey and I left them to it while trying to gather their things together at Kobanya Kispest and make their way to Keleti for their Szombathely train.
For me more nedding about on 431’s ensued and the afternoon was just as successful as the morning stint had been, yielding predominantly 431/0’s which was a bonus. At the end of it all I finally figured out how to get from Kobanya Kispest to Kelenfold, Budapest Keleti or Deli without having to use the metro or do EMU’s and so simple it was too but it doesn’t stare you in the face either!
The xx:32 Kobanya Kispest – Kunszentmiklas Tass trains are a plus 6 onto a Keleti bound train at Ferencvaros, departing at xx:45. While this is a rule there are exceptions on some hours, 18:45 ex Ferencvaros being one that doesn’t run for example so I planned to be on the 17:32 ex Kobanya Kispest, which was the only one of the Kunszentmiklas Tass trains that I’d seen depart right time while I’d been nedding about, most seeming to wait for the xx:21 IC arrivals, going into Nyugati, as a connection.
At Ferencvaros I was trying to get the gen on which platform the train to Keleti would depart from out of the station master when a train appeared in the distance; she told me that it wasn’t for Keleti but the moment I realised that the MAV 630 approaching was on stock and not freight wagons I wasn’t interested that it wasn’t the train for Keleti anymore and just wanted to know where it was going. Rather than ask her and then completely confuse the issue I asked some normal that was walking down the platform to get on it, she confirmed it was the Zahony train; this being 16806 1336 Keszthely – Zahony summer train and it was a decent rake too; headed on this day by 630040. So rather than head into Keleti I found myself heading straight back to Kobanya Kispest on a train that I should have passed en-route to Ferencvaros in the first place, so I was thankful it was late.
The bonus 630 move put an end to the day really and despite being late it made the 1751 IC into Nyugati, which itself was late, which I did into Nyugati for a metro move to Keleti costing HUF350 for a single ticket. There was gripping on the barriers at Nyugati and Keleti but only going onto the trains, not coming off them.
I had figured out I could do the 1838 Keleti – Szombathely to Kelenfold for something back in but when I found GySev 1116063, which I’d had that morning, at the head of the train I called it a day and did a Burger King food move instead and just generally bummed about for a while before boarding EN476 2005 Budapest Keleti – Berlin HB, which I’d be doing throughout. I spent the first 10 minutes on board figuring out just when I needed to be up and about to check engine numbers, the diagrams showing the following: ZSSK 350 Budapest to Bratislava, no gen for Bratislava – Brno, CD 362 Brno – Praha, CD 371 Praha – Dresden and finally a DB 101 Dresden to Berlin. It was like a bloody railtour and not really what I needed but I figured out that if I stayed up till Bratislava and checked what went on there I could flag the Brno engine change and do a double whammy at Praha at 0403 in the morning and then get the DB 101 when I got off at Berlin. Move sussed I chewed the cud with the other occupant in my two berth sleeper compartment, who was thankfully a decent chap, before chilling for the journey towards Bratislava.
As we approached Bratislava, 15 late, I stood at the doorway to make a quick exit and run to the front. While waiting the sleeper attendant seemed far too curious as to what I was doing and didn’t seem quite satisfied that I was getting off for some fresh air. His only response to that was to tell me I couldn’t smoke as the security staff on the platform would be watching; once off though virtually every door down the length of the train had someone smoking at it during the station stop. The train was rammed as well, with people on the floor in the open coaches.
At the front of the train the shunter had already uncoupled 350018 and sat just off the platform end was the fresh loco waiting to back on; it being 242275, which was unexpected and a bit of an unexpected bonus. Job done at Bratislava the walk back down the platform wasn’t quite as chaotic as it had been to get to the front in the first place; everyone either having dissipated or boarded the train.
I was glad to get into my berth for some sleep and with the alarm set for 0355 I would almost get as much sleep as I’d been getting in Ljubljana! Unfortunately lateness took some of that away from me in the night!
|470006||Gyor||Tatabanya||2340 (16/08) Munich HB – Budapest Keleti||EN463||MAV 470|
|1116063||Tatabanya||Kelenfold||0600 Szombathely – Budapest Keleti||IC919||GySev 1116|
|431177||Kelenfold||Budapest Deli||0556 Tapolca – Budapest Deli||979||MAV 431|
|431290||Budapest Deli||Kelenfold||0900 Budapest Deli – Veszprem||9052||MAV 431|
|5341039||Kelenfold||Kobanya Kispest||0816 Szekesfehervar – Kobanya Kispest||4427||MAV EMU’s 5341039/058|
|431114||Kobanya Kispest||Zuglo||0546 Nyirhegyhaza – Budapest Nyugati||6209||MAV 431|
|431166||Zuglo||Kobanya Kispest||0958 Budapest Nyugati – Zahony||6102||MAV 431|
|431285||Kobanya Kispest||Zuglo||0631 Miskolc – Budapest Nyugati||IC560||MAV 431|
|431097||Zuglo||Ferihegy||1023 Budapest Nyugati – Budapest Keleti||IC652||MAV 431|
|431228||Ferihegy||Kobanya Kispest||0845 Szeged – Budapest Nyugati||IC717||MAV 431|
|431230||Kobanya Kispest||Kiskunfelegyhaza||1053 Budapest Nyugati – Szeged||IC762||MAV 431|
|431218||Kiskunfelegyhaza||Petofiszallasi Tanyak||1234 Kiskunfelegyhaza – Szeged||7114||MAV 431|
|460054||Petofiszallasi Tanyak||Kiskunfelegyhaza||1211 Szeged – Kiskunfelegyhaza||7115||MAV 460|
|431357||Kiskunfelegyhaza||Kobanya Kispest||1245 Szeged – Budapest Nyugati||IC715||MAV 431|
|431265||Kobanya Kispest||Zuglo||0930 Budapest Keleti – Budapest Nyugati||IC564||MAV 431|
|431198||Zuglo||Kobanya Kispest||1523 Budapest Nyugati – Zahony||IC624||MAV 431|
|431081||Kobanya Kispest||Zuglo||1003 Zahony – Budapest Nyugati||6105||MAV 431|
|431010||Zuglo||Kobanya Kispest||1553 Budapest Nyugati – Szeged||IC706||MAV 431|
|431070||Kobanya Kispest||Ferihegy||1558 Budapest Nyugati – Zahony||6206||MAV 431|
|431091||Ferihegy||Kobanya Kispest||1315 Nyiregyhaza – Budapest Nyugati||IC615||MAV 431|
|431090||Kobanya Kispest||Ferihegy||1623 Budapest Nyugati – Miskolc||IC563||MAV 431|
|431133||Ferihegy||Kobanya Kispest||1130 Budapest Keleti – Budapest Nyugati||IC655||MAV 431 – MAV 431276 dit|
|431296||Kobanya Kispest||Ferencvaros||1732 Kobanya Kispest – Kunszentmiklos Tass||3736||MAV 431|
|630040||Ferencvaros||Kobanya Kispest||1336 Keszthely – Zahony||16806||MAV 630 vice MAV 431|
|431062||Kobanya Kispest||Budapest Nyugati||1545 Szeged – Budapest Nyugati||IC703||MAV431|
|350018||Budapest Keleti||Szob||2005 Budapest Keleti – Berlin HB||EN476||ZSSK 350 Budapest Keleti – Bratislava, ZSSK 242 Bratislava – Brno|
|Szob||Bratislava Hlavna Stanica|
|242275||Bratislava Hlavna Stanica||Kuty|
|Kuty||Brno Hlavni Nadrazi|
Monday 18th August 2014 (Upstairs or Downstairs?)
I was awake just before the alarm went off at 0355 so got up and utilised the facilities before standing at the gangway door at the rear of the coach, which was now the rear coach of the train having lost some coaches at Breclav, trying to figure out where we were; what was clear was the fact that we weren’t anywhere near Praha Hlavni Nadrazi though and we ultimately arrived there 45 late.
While waiting for the train to come to a stand in Praha Hlavni Nadrazi a different sleeper attendant wanted to know what I was doing. It was as though you weren’t allowed to go anywhere other than between your berth and the bog so this time I told him straight that I was going to get the engine number; this brought a strange look of disbelief but soon had the attendant going back to his attendant type things and leaving me be.
CD’s 362164 was just being hooked off as I got to the front of the train and by the time I got back to the opposite end of the trains CD’s 371002 was already buffered up and waiting to be attached. That was easy, although I’d been out of bed an hour waiting for the train to arrive at Praha and had stayed out of the compartment so as not to wake the guy I was sharing with; who as it turned out slept solidly all night and didn’t hear me at all!
More doss soon came but it was unfortunately broken just after 0700 by the noisy kids in the next compartment and by 0800 I gave it up as a bad job, the 0830 alarm call going off in the compartment eventually waking Mr Sleep in the upper berth for breakfast to be served. And a pretty poor one it was, with just a croissant, butter/jam and a coffee; a very poor show indeed.
The guy in my compartment was that immersed in telling me about the issues DB had suffered with their S-Bahn that he ultimately missed getting off at Berlin Sudkreuz as he wasn’t ready; I didn’t though and got off for him instead. As we were 10 or so late there was only a few minutes before IC2302 Nurnberg – Berlin Gesundbrunnen would follow us in and it was spot on time with 120103. The guy’s story about the S-Bahn had been interesting though and he’d been explaining how DB had done away with the platform staff at stations and had introduced a new CCTV system to allow drivers to close the doors without being given a tip. Unfortunately for DB this new system wasn’t operational for D-Day so DB had to rely on the drivers to do things manually, which resulted in them having to exit their cab to make sure all was well before closing the doors. What nobody had taken into consideration was the fact that the EMU cabs would ultimately suffer as a result of the doors being opened and closed all the time and the electrics eventually started to fail as they weren’t being cooled enough by the cab air-con and moisture was also getting into the systems as a result. These apparently weren’t good times for Berliners and he went on to say that the outside perception that DB used to be very efficient has never quite been the case.
Upon arrival at Berlin HB off IC2302 I had literally 4 hours before I needed to be airport bound for my 1710 flight back to Heathrow from Berlin’s TegelAirport. I’d done myself a simplifier for the hauled trains that would ply the downstairs platforms during my time in Berlin, including the IC’s, which covered Gesundbrunnen to Sudkreuz with Hauptbahnhof & Potsdamer Platz in between. Upstairs was a lot simpler in the fact that the Magdeburg – Frankfurt RE’s were every 30 minutes and you could do out and backs to Alexanderplatz in 18 minutes; these allegedly being the only hauled stuff upstairs; this was not the case on this particular day and I never made it to Alexanderplatz either!
To prepare myself for the leaping around that would follow I made a note of the platforms that the relevant trains would depart from to make life a bit easier during the short pluses and by the time I departed Berlin HB on my first 112 of the day at 0932, I was fully prepared for the 4 hours ahead; which surprisingly went a lot more smoothly than I ever expected.
Trains were largely on time on the downstairs section with the only late running seeming to be on the xx:39 departures from Potsdamer Platz into Hauptbahnhof but as these trains yielded the biggest pluses of the day, at a massive plus 9, there was a bit of leeway and I only had to get a shift on upstairs once and likewise only once in the opposite direction back downstairs. There were a couple of near misses while running for tight pluses downstairs to downstairs but not one missed; that I went for anyway.
Timekeeping on the upstairs section wasn’t at all good, hence me never actually making it to Alexanderplatz and every move I did involved bailing at Friedrichstrasse. Still the late running did get me more engines in some cases and it seemed that there was some vice EMU’s out too, namely 143065 & 143210 on Berlin Ost – Berlin Zoo shuttles all day, when they weren’t caped, and 143931 on a Berlin Flughafen – Nauen turn, which even had Ersatzug in the window display.
The moves worked out quite well in the end as when there’s a lull on the downstairs section from xx:42 to xx:16 there’s a move on the upstairs section to fill in the time, departing at xx:51 and arriving back at xx:09. Everything seemed to stick to diagram and the 4 hour manic bash was finished off by doing IC2208 Sudkreuz to Gesundbrunnen with 120101 for 101060 back to Hauptbahnhof with EC379 for 112184 to Gesundbrunnen making engine number 28 in the four hour spell in Berlin; and someone told me there wasn’t much to do in Berlin these days! I’d barely stopped since I’ arrived and was ready for a rest let me tell you.
I used the S42, anti-clockwise ring-bahn, to get from Gesundbrunnen to Beusselstrasse, only three stops, and then the TXL bus from there to the airport; the journey only taking approx. 8 minutes. It’s not signposted from the platforms as to which exit to use to get you to the right side of the road for the bus to the airport but it’s the one towards the rear of the train on arrival at Beusselstrasse; I found this out the hard way but was rewarded for missing the first bus by the fact that the next bus didn’t have a working machine to allow the bus driver to sell me a ticket so my journey to the airport was free as a result!
Unfortunately I had to queue up at the airport to get a boarding card as for some reason my British Airways app had lost my list of current flights and I couldn’t access my mobile boarding card as a result; having checked in the previous evening while in Burger King outside Budapest Keleti. The queuing was harmless enough though and there wasn’t a great deal of messing around at all.
The hectic morning had obviously taken it out of me and my head was nodding before we’d even departed Tegel and I can’t remember anything at all about take-off whatsoever! It was a simple flight and thankfully an on time one back at Heathrow; where for the first time ever I managed to get through security using my passport at the chip gates. It had never, ever worked before, and I was withered when the display turned green and the gate opened to let me though, the irony being my passport will be renewed in the new year so I’d have to see if the new one would work from day one.
The Piccadilly line was wedged into central London and the Victoria line from Green Park to Euston even more so. Thankfully though they were both efficient enough to get me to Euston for the 1943 Euston – Preston to Milton Keynes; where I’d be returning to work on nights the following night for a rest……..
|362164||Brno Hlavni Nadrazi||Praha Hlavni Nadrazi||2005 (17/08) Budapest Keleti – Berlin HB||EN476||CD 362, 362164 Brno – Praha for CD 371, 371002 Praha – Dresden for DB 101, 101073 forward|
|371002||Praha Hlavni Nadrazi||Decin Hlavni Nadrazi|
|Decin Hlavni Nadrazi||Dresden HB|
|101073||Dresden HB||Berlin Sudkreuz|
|120103||Berlin Sudkreuz||Berlin HB||0405 Nurnberg – Berlin Gesundbrunnen||IC2302|
|112190||Berlin HB||Potsdamer Platz||0614 Stralsund HB – Elsterwerda||18307|
|112109||Potsdamer Platz||Berlin HB||0812 Falkenberg – Burg Stargard||18508|
|182012||Berlin HB||Friedrichstrasse||0808 Magdeburg – Frankfurt Oder||18109|
|143210||Friedrichstrasse||Berlin HB||0951 Berlin Ost – Berlin Zoo||18016|
|112118||Berlin HB||Berlin Sudkreuz||0837 Burg Stargard – Falkenberg||18507|
|112116||Berlin Sudkreuz||Berlin HB||0826 Elsterwerda – Stralsund HB||18310|
|112105||Berlin HB||Potsdamer Platz||0908 Schwedt – Wunsdorf-Waldstadt||18347|
|112114||Potsdamer Platz||Berlin HB||0927 Lutherst-Wittenberg – Rostock HB||4356|
|182013||Berlin HB||Friedrichstrasse||0908 Magdeburg – Frankfurt Oder||18111|
|143931||Friedrichstrasse||Berlin HB||1026 Berlin Flughafen – Nauen||18912||DB 143 vice EMU|
|114040||Berlin HB||Berlin Sudkreuz||0834 Rostock HB – Lutherst-Wittenberg||4357|
|112133||Berlin Sudkreuz||Berlin HB||1033 Wunsdorf-Waldstadt – Schwedt||18348|
|112185||Berlin HB||Potsdamer Platz||0814 Stralsund HB – Elsterwerda||18309|
|112119||Potsdamer Platz||Berlin HB||1012 Falkenberg – Burg Stargard||18510|
|182004||Berlin HB||Friedrichstrasse||1008 Magdeburg – Eisenhuttenstadt||18113|
|182006||Friedrichstrasse||Berlin HB||1100 Frankfurt Oder – Magdeburg||18118|
|112123||Berlin HB||Berlin Sudkreuz||1037 Burg Stargard – Cottbus||18509|
|114003||Berlin Sudkreuz||Potsdamer Platz||1026 Elsterwerda – Stralsund HB||18312|
|112102||Potsdamer Platz||Berlin HB||1127 Lutherst-Wittenberg – Rostock HB||4358|
|112117||Berlin HB||Friedrichstrasse||1108 Magdeburg – Eisenhuttenstadt||18115|
|143848||Friedrichstrasse||Berlin HB||1133 Frankfurt Oder – Brandenburg||18174|
|143065||Berlin HB||Friedrichstrasse||1254 Berlin Zoo – Berlin Ost||18027|
|182012||Friedrichstrasse||Berlin HB||1200 Frankfurt Oder – Magdeburg||18120|
|112101||Berlin HB||Potsdamer Platz||1034 Rostock HB – Lutherst-Wittenberg||4359|
|112110||Potsdamer Platz||Berlin Sudkreuz||1014 Stralsund HB – Elsterwerda||18311|
|120101||Berlin Sudkreuz||Berlin Gesundbrunnen||0711 Munich HB – Berlin Gesundbrunnen||IC2208|
|101060||Berlin Gesundbrunnen||Berlin HB||1043 Osteebad Binz – Praha Hlavni Nadrazi||EC379|
|112184||Berlin HB||Berlin Gesundbrunnen||1224 Elsterwerda – Stralsund HB||18314|
|EMU||Berlin Gesundbrunnen||Beusselstrasse||1411 Berlin Sudkreuz – Berlin Sudkreuz||42141||EMU on S42 anti-clockwise ring-bahn|
|G-EUXK||Berlin Tegel||Heathrow Terminal 5||1710 Berlin Tegel – Heathrow||BA985|
|390134||Euston||Milton Keynes Central||1943 Euston – Preston||9P42|
Gen for Monday 18th August 2014
Diagrams by Day as per Summer 2014 diagrams
112102 – Day 1, 114040 – Day 2, 112101 – Day 3, 112114 – Day 5
112105 – BA1, 112185 – BA2, 112133 – BA3, 112190 – BA6, 112116 – BA7, 112184 – BA8, 112110 – BB1, 114003 – BB2, 112122 – BB4, 112109 – BD1 (pm), 112109 – BD2 (am), 112119 – BD3, 112118 – BD4, 112123 – BD5
Magdeburg – Frankfurt circuit
182004, 006, 012, 013 plus 112117 & 143848
143065 & 143210 out on Berlin Ost – Berlin Zoo shuttles
143931 18912 1027 Berlin Flughafen – Nauen vice EMU
Quite an intense trip really with not great deal of sleep involved; no thanks to overnights with various engine changes en-route; lesson learnt there!
Either I was very lucky, or SZ had changed their policy on what they were using the hired SBB 2016’s on? With 6 different 664’s out on the drag circuit each time I was there it would have been a disaster not to have got few in. Yes, they’re loud, but after a few runs with them I did find myself asking just what was the difference between them and the 1931’s in Portugal? Both are loud engines but neither has any meat on the bones or growl at all, it’s just a wall of noise with no beat and no divert or transition either to spice things up a little. The 664’s are certainly entertaining though.
Having been subjected to the wall of noise that the 664’s emitted everything diesel wise in Hungary was a massive disappointment after that; the Nohab in particular. I was expecting a lot more from it but as far as GM’s go it was pretty poor noise wise and I’d go so far as to say things like the GT’s in Tunisia are louder, as are the damn things the Indians are spitting out way too quickly for my liking. 2761017 certainly looks the part though.
As for the Ganz, well words can’t really describe the silence. Even the low numbered ones I had were poor by comparison to others I’d had and 408203 was quieter than them all, finishing off the day as quietly as it had started with 418197.
As I’ve said, someone told me there wasn’t much to do in Berlin these days; well there was certainly enough to keep me on my toes for four hours continuously! If you like a good spin and plan things properly before you arrive then there’s more than enough to go at and if you have more than four hours there things can be done at a more leisurely pace.