My Favorite Rail Road


Growing up as a kid I lived right next to a train track about a half a block from my house. And I would run over and stand by the track when I heard the train coming. It was The CNW and to this day it's one of my favorite. And I also have memories Of ICG as a kid. The town I live in now has CN. But my new favorite RR is the new CPKC What's your favorite Rail Road?
I am kind of partial to fallen flags that ran when I was a boy. Milwaukee Road, Northern Pacific, Spokane, Portland & Seattle, Great Northern, Burlington Northern. It is hard for me to pick a favorite now, I much prefer the English and European passenger trains, but I live in Union Pacific country, so I like to see them go by. I wish they would bring the Big Boy this way, but it doesn't seem to be on their schedule.
I have only 2, New South Wales Government Railway and Victorian Railways which I worked for for a number of years. They are gone now, but many of their locomotives are still being used by Southern Shorthaul amd Pacific National
I grew up across the street from the Boston and Maine, mainline for the first 3-1/2 years of my life. My dad would bring me over to the fence to watch the trains down in the gulley below. We would ride the B&M Budd Liners (RDCs) to Boston and dad would ride them to work. While the B&M is deep in my heart and now a fallen flag, my favorite railroad was its southern competitor and partner the New York, New Haven, and Hartford. (New Haven or NH) also a fallen flag.

The NH became my favorite because it ran all kinds of really cool trains. They had the electrics on the mainline between New Haven and New York City as well as all sorts of diesel locomotives from various manufacturers. Their mainline paralleled the New England Thruway, today Interstate 95. When we would travel down to visit my great grandmother and aunts and uncles in NYC, we would take the NET. From the point where we passed over Cedar Hill Yard all the way to NYC, my eyes were glued to the side window as I watched the plethora of electrics, diesel hauled trains, DMUs, EMUs, regular Budd RDCs, and you name it, was on the 4-track or wider main line. The NH was like a model railroad with all the add-ons and equipment thrown in.

Sadly, they disappeared too. The Penn Central destroyed that small company very quickly after they were forced to merge that in with the failed NY Central Pennsy merger. They hated the NH because it pulled freight off their lines and when the Poughkeepsie bridge burned down in the early 1970s, that did the NH in because that line was their direct connection with the Erie Lackawanna and other western roads.
I grew up with the Pittsburgh & Lake Erie in my town. Also had PRR/Penn Central across the river, and B&O/Chessie/Amtrak having track rights on the P&LE. These are my favorites in that order mentioned.
Oh, the Milwaukee Road (West) where Granddad was conductor. He took me on the Hiawatha (16) from Spokane to Deer Lodge where we laid over and brought 15 west next day. I wasn't supposed to go into the Skytop Lounge but snuck in anyway as we were dropping down from the Adair curve in the sunset. Gorgeous! Got about 5 minutes before he reclaimed me. Once when I was 3 or 4 he took Mom and me on the Coeur d'Alene turn, and again later when I could remember more.

We were a service family and got around -- one night Dad piled us in the car after bedtime and we drove down between Yorktown and Newport News to an N&W wreck of empty coal hoppers. There was a vacant used car lot by the tracks and the cranes were moving car bodies into one stack and loose bogies into another under a sign that read "Used Cars and Trucks." The N&Ws Powhatan Arrow with the J4 was spectacular. Dad and I went to the B&O's 125th birthday party in Baltimore on an RDC -- lots of steam-ins in the 1950's. We rode the East Broad Top and the Strasburg lines while we were back there, too. JNR's Shinkansen is a favorite memory, along with the Yamate Line; one time my wife and I took the Chunnel from London and transferred to the Thalys at Brussels, switching at Koeln to the ICE to Frankfurt/Main. Memorable rides all -- I mostly remember the Chunnel train as boring once we were in the bore :hehe:.

I grew up in Berwyn, Illinois, USA, a suburb of Chicago. Two railroads ran through town: Chicago, Burlington and Quincy (now BNSF) and Illinois Central (now CN). As kids, we would ride our bikes down to the BNSF line to watch trains. This is a 3-track line known as the racetrack. Plenty of trains: Commuter rail, long distance passenger, and of course freight trains as well.

Two more childhood memories:

When I was about 5 years old, our upstairs neighbor was a driver for the Indiana Harbor Belt. One day he took me to his workplace to see what he drove. It was a steam loco in the final days of steam.

When I was around 10 years old, my uncle took me to go fishing on the Fox River, north of Aurora, IL. But we didn't go by car, we took the train, which was the Chicago, Aurora, & Elgin, an electric interurban line. Like so many railroads of its kind, the rise of automobile use reduced passenger counts and it became defunct in 1961,
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I'm American but have always had a fondness for British - and European in general - railways instead, I just don't have too much interest in American. For my favorite, I think i'd have to say either LMS or SR because both had such magnificent designs and covered most of the country, meaning their locos could be seen everywhere. I'd also say Midland and Eastern British Rail regions are where I prefer to keep it during nationalisaion.

I do sorta like the New Haven and Metro North lines since I'm around - and currently live - in the South New England/TriState area, and I grew up around the later MN electrics, like the M6, M7...I'll just leave it at that
It's a contest between the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad or the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy railway. Both were integral parts of my family and they were very interesting and unique railroads with a lot of history.
Just want to say thanks to all you good folks for posting your favorites. I really enjoy reading them. :Y:
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It's a contest between the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad or the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy railway. Both were integral parts of my family and they were very interesting and unique railroads with a lot of history.

I kinda fancy the Burlington Northern with the green with white face engines...
I have both British and American favourites.
Both my father and grandfather worked for the Great Western , as fireman and express driver respectively, so there was never any doubt for me that that railway was the best ever. I also lived near it , both in London and in wales , my grandfathers allotment was right next to the old oak common line so I got to see kings and castles passing at speed as well as the odd diesel shunter pass by. It was nationalised by then, but to me in the 1950s it was still the great western.
My grandfather did a US trip and came back with a pile of Trains magazines ,I became obsessed with the DRGW narrow gauge consolidations of the 19th century.
Here in Australia my fave system is our local SAR , it had a lovely mix of UK and US design elements as well as giant Garrett's , and a lot of great narrow gauge lines as well.
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