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CPR's train no. 7, the first one into Vancouver powered by 4500 H.P. diesel electric on loan to the CPR from General Motors.  The train was almost three hours late.  Consisted of 13 cars and arrived in Vancouver on Friday the 13'th of January, 1950.  Burrard Inlet west of Port Moody by 1.5 miles.

"TEST RUN DOWN FRASER VALLEY   CPR diesel Opens New Rail Era"   By A. J. Darrymple 
  Out of this world!  That's the three-unit royal blue, silver and gold General Motors diesel that pulled CPR's crack transcontinental "Dominion" into Vancouver at 10:50 a.m. today in a history-making test run heralding a new era in transportation developement in Canada.
  Imagine yourself at the head of a power plant 154 feet eight inches in length, with total weight of 718,000 pounds, lifting a string of 13 steel coaches, 1190 tons, up the grades and rolling around the heavy curvatures at 55 miles an hour, and you realize the thrill of railroading.
  Although these diesels have been undergoing exhaustive tests in Ontario, this test run really started from Winnipeg for the 1473 miles to Vancouver under sever winter conditions.
  Reporters, radio newscasters and photographers boarded the train at North Bend before dawn today for the run over the last lap into Vancouver.
  A blizzard roared down the Fraser canyon; and officials of General Electric and CPR checked the operation of the three units under sub-zero conditions.
  In the big, clean, roomy, clear-vision cab, the experts scanned the operational devices and speedmeter as the powerful engines sang their song of high efficiency.
  Veteran Engineer Alfred Fahey handled the throttle with Fireman M. J. Marshall on the left-hand side.  While the window-wipers beat metronome time to the humming wheels, the crew, flanked by a battery of maintenence men and operating instructors, leaned forward peering through the snowy mists.
  Down through Yale and then the frosty Fraser Valley, rolling toward Deroche, passing the stations in a swirl of snow, all intent upon the flashing signals.
  A pin point of green.
  "Clear board," sang the engineer.
  "Clear board," corroborated his mate.
  On through Dewdney and Hatzic, passing the eastbound Huntingdon mixed train at 9:37, and then reaching out for the curving course around Burrard inlet, and through the yards and waving crowds at the station.
  "A fine trip," said D. M. Campbell, General Motors application engineer, "but we would have preferred the test under more rigorous conditions; 15 below was the worst we went through."
  Regardless of the weather, CPR chalked up another first; the first of such power units to be used in transcontinental passenger train through the Rockies; recalling another first, that day, May 23, 1887, when old No. 374 pulled the first passenger train into Vancouver.
  Now the trend is distinctly from time - honored steam to diesel; lower fuel, maintenance and labor costs; improved schedules through reduction of service steops.  Example:  Winnipeg - Vancouver run steam locomotives make 32 stops for water; diesels 10.
  For the passenger:  Smoother stops and starting and a more restful ride; and for the romantic - minded rail-fan, a sleek machine in brilliant color designs, running swiftly and purring like an electric clock.
  CPR officials aboard were T. F. Donald, Winnipeg, assistant superintendent of motive power; G. H. Nowell, Vancouver district master mechanic;  Al Cowburn, assistant superintendent, North Bend; W. Sinclair, Montreal, diesel equipment engineer;  B. W. Woodland, Winnipeg, internal combustion equipment superinvisor; Ernest Hanson, Vancouver, diesel supervisor for Pacific region.
  General Motors officials:  H. D. Dana, assistant general servicee manager;  R. E. Hunter, sales director;  Don Campbell, engineer;  Mel Johnson, service and maintenance engineer;  Frank Switzer, Ed Park, E. Formento, operating instructors.
Copyright Notice: This image ©Andy Morin all rights reserved.



Caption: CPR's train no. 7, the first one into Vancouver powered by 4500 H.P. diesel electric on loan to the CPR from General Motors. The train was almost three hours late. Consisted of 13 cars and arrived in Vancouver on Friday the 13'th of January, 1950. Burrard Inlet west of Port Moody by 1.5 miles. "TEST RUN DOWN FRASER VALLEY CPR diesel Opens New Rail Era" By A. J. Darrymple Out of this world! That's the three-unit royal blue, silver and gold General Motors diesel that pulled CPR's crack transcontinental "Dominion" into Vancouver at 10:50 a.m. today in a history-making test run heralding a new era in transportation developement in Canada. Imagine yourself at the head of a power plant 154 feet eight inches in length, with total weight of 718,000 pounds, lifting a string of 13 steel coaches, 1190 tons, up the grades and rolling around the heavy curvatures at 55 miles an hour, and you realize the thrill of railroading. Although these diesels have been undergoing exhaustive tests in Ontario, this test run really started from Winnipeg for the 1473 miles to Vancouver under sever winter conditions. Reporters, radio newscasters and photographers boarded the train at North Bend before dawn today for the run over the last lap into Vancouver. A blizzard roared down the Fraser canyon; and officials of General Electric and CPR checked the operation of the three units under sub-zero conditions. In the big, clean, roomy, clear-vision cab, the experts scanned the operational devices and speedmeter as the powerful engines sang their song of high efficiency. Veteran Engineer Alfred Fahey handled the throttle with Fireman M. J. Marshall on the left-hand side. While the window-wipers beat metronome time to the humming wheels, the crew, flanked by a battery of maintenence men and operating instructors, leaned forward peering through the snowy mists. Down through Yale and then the frosty Fraser Valley, rolling toward Deroche, passing the stations in a swirl of snow, all intent upon the flashing signals. A pin point of green. "Clear board," sang the engineer. "Clear board," corroborated his mate. On through Dewdney and Hatzic, passing the eastbound Huntingdon mixed train at 9:37, and then reaching out for the curving course around Burrard inlet, and through the yards and waving crowds at the station. "A fine trip," said D. M. Campbell, General Motors application engineer, "but we would have preferred the test under more rigorous conditions; 15 below was the worst we went through." Regardless of the weather, CPR chalked up another first; the first of such power units to be used in transcontinental passenger train through the Rockies; recalling another first, that day, May 23, 1887, when old No. 374 pulled the first passenger train into Vancouver. Now the trend is distinctly from time - honored steam to diesel; lower fuel, maintenance and labor costs; improved schedules through reduction of service steops. Example: Winnipeg - Vancouver run steam locomotives make 32 stops for water; diesels 10. For the passenger: Smoother stops and starting and a more restful ride; and for the romantic - minded rail-fan, a sleek machine in brilliant color designs, running swiftly and purring like an electric clock. CPR officials aboard were T. F. Donald, Winnipeg, assistant superintendent of motive power; G. H. Nowell, Vancouver district master mechanic; Al Cowburn, assistant superintendent, North Bend; W. Sinclair, Montreal, diesel equipment engineer; B. W. Woodland, Winnipeg, internal combustion equipment superinvisor; Ernest Hanson, Vancouver, diesel supervisor for Pacific region. General Motors officials: H. D. Dana, assistant general servicee manager; R. E. Hunter, sales director; Don Campbell, engineer; Mel Johnson, service and maintenance engineer; Frank Switzer, Ed Park, E. Formento, operating instructors.

Photographer:
Andy Morin [121] (more) (contact)
Date: 01/13/1950 (search)
Railway: Canadian Pacific (search)
Reporting Marks: GM 7001 (search)
Train Symbol: 7 (search)
Subdivision/SNS: Port Moody, Cascade (search)
City/Town: Vancouver (search)
Province: British Columbia (search)
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Photo ID: 44008

Map courtesy of Open Street Map

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4 Comments
  1. This is unreal and nothing short of amazing.

  2. Outstanding image.

  3. Absolutely fantastic !!Canada’s version of the 1939 FT demonstrator tour.

  4. Well, don’t that beat all !!!

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