Dec 282016

We call it Trainspotting. There are other names for the pastime, but we like that one best (loath the term “railfanning”). In its simplest form…one grabs a camera, finds a place overlooking some train tracks, snaps away and there you have it! Of course there are those who take it “higher”, foamers as they’re oftentimes called. The name is embraced by some and to others is an insult, but regardless is used fairly universally.

Those players bring tons of gear, two or more still cameras, another for movies, multiple tripods, they’ll pack scanners to keep abreast of the action, they’ll don visibility vests so everyone knows who they are and regardless of what’s happening their focus never leaves the tracks. Even when nothing’s happening, it never leaves the tracks. Ahead of a visit, they plan…oh do they plan. Compare them to rabid comic-con Star-Trek types…only for trains.

The folks take a more bucolic approach.

We of course plan, but not all that seriously. We want to see trains but if they don’t show, who cares. No scanners here. Some of our fondest trainspotting outings have resulted in zero trains. No matter, it’s about the experience. We’ll bring wine, of course, often a picnic lunch, a good book to read between trains (if any show at all), perhaps the tablet to play with and we talk and chat. It’s like fishing – the act is more important than the catch. A bad day train spotting is still a pretty good day…a great day trainspotting is pure magic. We let fate decide which it’ll be.

The location seen here is along the Bow River near the CPR’s Mitford Bridge, west of Cochrane Alberta. A pretty pleasant spot.

More watching trains…
Trainspotting – Field BC edition.

Short Subjects: reports that for any number of reasons are brief in nature. They might be updates to older articles, previews of posts planned or not yet published, brief snippets of things that don’t fit in anywhere else or subjects that are so obscure that information on them can’t be found. Or sometimes we just ramble on about Lord knows what.

If you need any more information on what we talked about here, by all means contact us!

Date of adventure: November, 2016.
Location: Cochrane (Mitford), AB.


Trainspotting style – it’s not about them!

Trainspotting with wine

What’s most important – wine and an interesting read.

Trainspotting Cochrane Alberta

Still, we take in the action.


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8 Comments on "Trainspotting style"

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Jason Sailer
Jason Sailer

I prefer ‘railfanning’ over ‘trainspotting’ in my opinion and no vests! Don’t need the railway employees to be distracted by people in vests trackside 😛

Steve Boyko

I like to compare railfans trainspotters to bird watchers. Same meticulous planning, same interest in odd sightings. But I must insist on no vests!! 🙂

Hans Henry Roth
Hans Henry Roth

Oh, good book!

Malcolm Millar
Malcolm Millar

(via Facebook)
A glass of a fine goblet of red wine, a good book, box of dark chocolates and plenty of changing sunlight angles.