Arakkonan electric loco shed’s trusted oldie WAM4 #21255 goes past Baiyyappanahalli with the 17209 Bangalore – Kakinada Town Sheshadri Express on an olvercast, cloudy day, and it started drizzling as soon as the train disappeared beyond the starter signal. The Old Monk (how WAM4s are fondly known) will haul the train all the way until Vijayawada, from where a diesel will take over. WAM4s are the oldest electric locomotives currently in service in India, and all those wrinkles on their face show their age, hence the name Old Monk. But still they still pack a solid punch and still can give the WAP4 and WAP7 youngsters a run for their money! Renowned crawler 16566 Mangalore – Yeshwantpur (via Kerala, TN) was standing on PF1 for a long time for no apparent reason.
Southern Railway’s fastest train, the 12007 “James Bond” Chennai – Mysore Shatabdi Express cruises past Bayyappanahalli a couple of minutes late on its way towards the end of its non-stop run from Chennai to Bangalore. I was trying to capture this train for years now, but never got there on time. I was so excited that I fudged up the camera’s settings and the photo got a bit underexposed 🙁 Arakkonam’s WAM4 “Old Monk” #21233 is doing the honors on the helm. #21233 is also one of my favorite locomotives which once did the 66 km from Bangarapet to Bangalore Cantonment in 45 minutes flat with a TVC-BNC Premium Express!
On a chilly morning where it looked like it would rain (and it did), Arakkonam’s 25-year old WAP1 #22013 crawls into Kottayam bringing in India’s train with the longest running distance, the 15606 Vivek Express from Dibrugarh in Assam the very eastern frontier of India to Kanyakumari on the southern most tip. The train was scheduled at 0340 on a Wednesday. So I first thought it was 4 hours late, when I realized it was Thursday, making the train one day and four hours or 28 hours late!! The train was dirty and filthy, crammed with people and stinking like a poultry farm. The photo is aa bit overexposed. The 22013 is a cracker of a loco.