Showing posts from February, 2012

Ernad to teakland.. Part-1

"...was thining of gng to the teakland" this message from Vibin got me on the roll. I had been planning to visit Nilambur eversince I saw the first photographs of this line on IRFCA. Although I had been to this place by road a few times (just passed through on my way to Bangalore), I never had the opportunity to try the railway service. The Nilambur Road-Shoranur railway line connects Shoranur in Palakkad district to Nilambur in Malappuram district. Nilambur is renowned for its teak plantations, and this was the very reason for constructing this 66km long railway line. The line was completed and opened in phases in 1927. The line was later closed in 1941 during the World War. Due to public protests, this line was relaid. The Shoranur-Angadipuram section was reopened in 1953, and the remaining section in 1954. The line passes through a scenic section - paddy fields, teak forests, looming hills, rivers, etc. The line was badly neglected by authorities until recently, when the

Why this kolaveri.. adi??

January 19, 2012: After a thoroughly contented day - busfanning and railfanning at Varkala, in Trivandrum district, Kerala, I was waiting on the platform for my return link - the Trivandrum-Ernakulam Vanchinad express. Vanchinad is now only a shade of its real self - a prestigious train in the past. Varkala has two platforms, and my train was to arrive on the main platform - there was one really good refreshment stall here. My train was to arrive at 1819. It was one really tiring day, and I settled under a fan waiting for my train to come - the train came in more or less on time, behind one of those red coloured locos (I did not bother reading its road number). My coach - C1 - came right in front of me. I was the only passenger to board this coach from Varkala (VAK). As soon as I reached my seat, the TTE came and checked my ticket. By now the train started moving as well. This was a 2001, ICF built coach - I had traveled in the same train, same coach, same seat earlier in the day as

A short Rajdhani trip

July 15, 2011, 17:30hrs: After a tiring day spotting buses, in intermitted rains, I slowly lug towards Trivandrum Central Railway station. It was just days after a terrorist attack in Mumbai - the security at the station was on high alert. My baggage was scanned on entry - there were dozens of arm wielding cops staring at me while entering the station. With all my energy drained, I headed straight to the AC Waiting room - but the room was hot and humid! I took a seat, and caught up a few winks. The PA system was blurting out advertisements before each announcement - it was irritating to the core. My train was shunted in at around 1830. The shining Red-and-Grey rake looked elegant at the first sight. On close inspection, the coach surface was badly wavy, poor paint job, exposed welds and what not. Clearly disappointed by what I saw, I decided to head towards the loco.The platform was full of cops (RPF and State Police), plus there were lots of guys who looked like railway officials. T