Six Flags Make-up Trip:
When I visited Six Flags Great Adventure in early June, I was hoping to ride on Kingda Ka; the world’s highest roller coaster and the fastest roller coaster in North America. Unfortunately, the ride was closed so they could build a new ride for the part. I resolved to go back once Kingda Ka was running again.
On July 4th, the new ride “Zumanjaro Drop of Doom” opened. That allowed Kingda Ka to reopen as well.
My plan was to ride from Toronto to New York on the Maple Leaf on Thursday October 2 and stay in the New York area. The next day, I would go to the New York Transit Museum again and do some more transit fanning. During the weekend, I would go to Six Flags on the Saturday. If Kingda Ka was closed that day or the weather was bad, I would go on Sunday instead. The Monday, I would do a little more fanning in New York before I caught the Lakeshore Limited to Utica where I would overnight. The next day, I would take the Maple Leaf to Toronto. The trip unfolded as follows.
October 2, 2014:
I got to Union station at 7:40 am; 40 minutes before the Maple Leaf was scheduled to depart. Boarding began at 8:01 am. I was seated in Amfleet 2 coach #25101. The train departed on time.
West of Union, the train stopped at a couple signals. I filmed the equipment for VIA trains 52 and 62 as they passed. Another VIA train passed, but I was unable to film it.
As we passed VIA's Toronto Maintenance Center, I filmed the equipment in the yard. I saw VIA lounge car “Glenfraser” in the yard. A GO train passed by which blocked my view of the yard. However, I did notice that former VIA LRC locomotive #6917 which is owned by the Toronto Railway Historical Association was no longer in the yard. The THRA had gotten the locomotive operational during the summer and ran it with a train of three LRC coaches including a rebuilt LRC coach in the yard and it worked perfectly.
West of the TMC, we slowed to a stop again. I went to the cafe car as I was thirsty. I returned to my seat. The train stopped at Oakville. At Oakville, we passed an eastbound GO train with two F59PHs, but I was unable to photograph it
The train stopped at Aldershot. West of Aldershot, VIA train #70 passed, but I was unable to film it.
The train passed through Hamilton. I was given a form to fill out for customs. I filled it out. The train bypassed its stop in Grimsby. We stopped in St. Catherines a few minutes later.
The train departed St. Catherines and crossed over the Welland Canal. We made a double stop in Niagara Falls, Ontario a few minutes later.
The train departed Niagara Falls, Ontario and crossed into the U.S. We went past the Niagara Falls, New York station and then backed in. We were made to go through customs. The woman who processed me remembered me, but wondered if she had denied me entry before. I told her that she had let me into the U.S. The inspection was fine and I was soon finished. I got back on the train and handed the form to a customs agent. The inspection was soon 100% complete and we were allowed onto the platform I photographed the train which was led by P42 #131.
I then got back on and went on the computer. The train left Niagara Falls, New York on time. My ticket was taken. I took some Dayquil as I had unfortunately come down with a cold just before the trip. Of all the rotten luck!
The train stopped at Buffalo Exchange Street station. After we left Exchange Street, the cafe car opened. We passed a freight train with Canadian Pacific power. We stopped at Buffalo Depew station.
After we left Depew, I bought lunch from the cafe car. I worked on this report some more.
The train stopped in Rochester. At Rochester, there was a CSX rail train next to us. We soon departed Rochester. Amtrak train #63 passed, but I was unable to film it.
Between Rochester and Syracuse, we stopped to let a westbound CSX freight pass. We were underway again.
As we passed the fairgrounds outside Syracuse, I filmed the railway equipment in the yard. We stopped outside the station to let Amtrak train #281 pass. As it passed, I filmed it. The train stopped in Syracuse. While we were stopped, an eastbound CSX intermodel train passed.
The train departed Syracuse and we passed the CSX yard. Between Syracuse and Rome, we began to overtake the CSX intermodel that passed us in Syracuse. I took some more Dayquil and went to the cafe car for a drink.
The train stopped at Rome and Utica. At Utica, I filmed the equipment from the Adirondack Scenic Railway and the Mohawk, Adirondack, and Northern railway. I also noticed a depressed center flat car with 16 axles.
The train overtook an eastbound CSX freight. Amtrak train #283 passed, but I was unable to film it. The train stopped at Amsterdam and Schenectady. At Schenectady, I filmed Amtrak's northbound Ethan Allan Express. We soon departed Schenectady.
A little while later, we were approaching Albany. I filmed the Amtrak yard before we stopped north of the station. We were waiting for a platform track to be cleared. We eventually pulled into the eastern most track. I could make out the Lakeshore Limited awaiting its departure. I got off and took some photos.
P42 #131 was uncoupled. A few minutes later, P32AC-dm #705 coupled up to the train. I photographed it.
I then got back on the train. The HEP was soon restored and the train departed at 7:21 pm; six minutes late. The train stopped at Hudson and Rhinecliff. I bought dinner and returned to my seat after kicking someone who was sitting there.
The train stopped at Poughkeepsie. We passed a few Metro North commuter trains. I worked on this report some more.
A little while later, we stopped at Croton-Harmon. We departed a minute later. The crew announced that we were 20 minutes from Yonkers and 40 minutes from New York.
A Metro North train passed as we left Croton-Harmon. We stopped at Yonkers a few minutes later. I phoned my friend Dan to see if we were still up to meeting tomorrow, but got cut off.
However, we were approaching New York's Penn Station. I readied my stuff in preparation to get off. The Maple Leaf arrived pretty much on time. I got off and photographed the train.
I then bought some Kleenex and got on the subway. I rode a train of R32 subway cars on the “C” line to 103rd Street and got off and filmed the train pulling away. Shortly after the train left, I saw a work train but was unable to film it.
I then walked four blocks to my hostel. I checked in and went to my room. I phoned home and let my mom know I was in New York. I then phoned my friend Dan back. He said he wasn't sure if he'd be able to join me tomorrow at the New York Transit Museum. He would text me in the morning. I soon called it a night.
October 3, 2014:
I was in a two bed hostel room. I could tell I already had a roommate. He finally came just before 3:30 am. Ugh. I was soon able to get to sleep.
I got up at 8:00 am and got dressed. I went to the lobby for breakfast. I was given a voucher for a deli which was a couple blocks away, but the people at the hostel had given poor info. I eventually found the deli and had breakfast. I then got my stuff and headed to the subway.
I rode a train of R32s to Penn Station and filmed the train pulling out. I went to the area where I told Dan where I'd meet him if he were to come. I bought a donut from Krispy Kreme donuts while I was waiting.
A few minutes later, I got a text from Dan saying he couldn't make it. I then got on an “A” line train and rode to the Hoyt-Schermerhorn station. I then walked a couple blocks north. I rode an RTS a few blocks west but I didn't photograph it.
I then went to the New York transit museum and paid my admission. I took some photographs.
I was wondering if the cars on display were the same ones I had seen in June. I saw that a set of R40 slant cars were now on display in the station. I took some photographs of them and other cars on display.
I then left the platform. I walked through the turnstyles on display and took a few more pictures.
I went to the gift shop and bought a toy articulated bus. I then left the museum. A block away, I saw an Orion 5 laying over. I ran over and photographed it.
I got on and went for a short ride. I finally got an MTA Orion 5 ride. I got off and photographed the bus.
I then filmed the bus pulling away. I took one more photo.
I then walked and photographed two C40LFs before I got on one and went for a short ride.
I got off the bus and photographed it before I filmed it pulling away. I headed back to the subway and photographed an MTA XD40
I got on the subway and rode to Grand Central station. I looked around the station before I boarded a “7” train and rode one stop west to the Port Authority Bus Terminal where I bought lunch. I got on the “7” line again and rode east. The “7” line passes above Amtrak's Sunnyside yard. As we passed the yard, I filmed the equipment in the yard. I got off and transferred to the “F” train and rode to Kew Gardens Union Turnpike where I got off and walked to where the Redbird subway car is on display. I photographed it.
I then walked back to the subway and boarded an eastbound “E” train and rode to the second last stop on the line and transferred to the Airtrain to JFK Airport. I rode to Terminal 4 and took some photos of planes from the train.
I also saw but didn't photograph an older D40LF. I got off the train at Terminal 4. The reason I got off was that when I was planning my trip to Europe, I was seriously considering flying out of JFK straight to London's Heathrow Airport on Kuwait Airways. I would have flown on a Boeing 777. However, the flight got sold out before I could book a ticket and I eventually flew Air Transat instead. I decided to go to what might have been.
After awhile, I got back on the Airtrain and rode back to the subway. Along the way, I photographed some more planes.
I then rode the “E” line west and transferred to the “B” line I decided to ride past my stop and got off at 110th Street because the southbound local track would be shut down during the weekend. To get south, I would have to ride three stops north and then transfer to a southbound train.
After I got off the train, I walked over to the southbound platform and waited several minutes for a southbound train. I rode one stop and then walked back to my hostel where I decided to lie down for awhile. I also worked on my report and went online.
After awhile, I decided to go out for dinner. I walked to the subway station and rode to 34th Street Penn Station and bought dinner at a Wendy's. I then looked around the area and bought some more Kleenex before I got on the subway and rode back to 106th street and walked back to my hostel. I eventually called it a night.
October 4, 2014:
When I woke up, I saw it was raining. This wasn't a good day to go to Six Flags. I went back to bed. I eventually got up and got dressed. I sprinted to the deli two blocks away and bought some fruit. I then returned to my hostel and had breakfast before I laid down again. I went to the lobby and went online for a little while before I went back to bed.
After awhile, I got up and saw it had stopped raining. I decided to go out. I took a walk through Central Park. During the walk, I took some photos.
I was at the east side of the park. I caught an Orion 7 NG and rode to 79th Street and got off. I bought a lemonade from a street vendor and went to catch a bus. I saw a D60 heading west. I photographed it before I got on.
I rode the D60 to the Museum of Natural History and got off and photographed the bus and filmed it pulling away.
I got on the subway; remembering that there was no local southbound service. I caught an “A” train north to 125th street and transferred to a southbound train. It was a “C” with R32 cars. It's nice to see them running on the weekend. I rode to 59th street. Along the way, I filmed some subway work cars including the three I had seen when I had arrived a couple nights ago.
I got off at 59th street and filmed the train pulling out. I transferred to the “D” line and rode into Brooklyn. I was looking for an RTS. There was a mall nearby which I went into for a few minutes and then left. I wandered down the street until I saw an RTS coming. I ran to the stop and photographed the bus before I got on.
I rode the RTS to Hoyt Avenue and got off and filmed it pulling away. I took one more photo of it.
I then walked to the Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway station and waited for a train to take me back to Manhattan. I saw a couple rats on the platform itself; not at track level. The rats in the New York subway system are quite big. I've seen small mice in Toronto; nowhere near as big as in New York.
A Manhattan bound “A” train arrived and I got on. I rode the train to 14th street when I saw a MTA work train in the station. I got off the train and photographed the work train
Prior to this trip, a friend and I had done subway work car fanning in Toronto on a number of occasions. When I told him that I was going to New York, he said maybe I could do work car fanning there. I can now say I did!
I then boarded an “E” line train and rode to Penn Station where I bought dinner. I then took a subway train back to 103rd street and walked back to my hostel. I worked on this report some more and tried to go online, but I had trouble logging in. I eventually was able to. I set my alarm for 7:00 am and called it a night. I used items from my Amtrak sleeping kit which I had bought on the Crescent and never removed from my suitcase. They came in handy at the hostel.
Click to see if I made it onto Kingda Ka at Six Flags or if I was burnt again: Return to Six Flags