Employing the inauguration of passenger service date of 1873 and the lifting of rails date of 1993 as book ends, Rymal would be witness to some one hundred and twenty years of motive power evolution. Steam locomotive wise, the technology would progress from diminutive so called ‘American’ 4-4-0’s to CNR’s preeminent ‘Northern’ 4-8-4’s. Late in steam, the everyday freight or mixed became famous for ‘Moguls’ and ‘Ten Wheelers’. To climb out of the lower city, when warranted by tonnage, the light weight Moguls were either doubled up (sometimes tripled!) or aided by ‘Mikados’. While the former H&NW line may not have been home to 4-8-4’s for the workaday traffic, superstar excursion performer Northerns 6167 & 6218 each plied the line in the 1960’s.
As previously mentioned, my attention (i.e. take photos) to the line began in the mid 1970’s. Motive power at the time was exclusively the smallish, gnarly appearing SW1200RS. Wooden cabooses were still the order of the day. The interest and experience would consume almost a decade and a half. GP9RM 4107 pictured below would be the last unit I would capture on film (why did I shoot B&W for so long???!!!). Nevertheless, I’m more than grateful to have had the opportunity to capture as much Rymal activity as I did over the years.