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| p.1 #7 · Advice for Trip to Glacier, Banff and Alberta |
This is not landscape exactly, but it seems many landscape photographers are also railroad photographers and trains often look really nice in landscape photos. If you have any railroad interest at all, when you arrive in Glacier find the Isaac Walton Inn. This is the site of one of the many James J. Hill stories. The continental divide runs thorugh Glacier. His Great Northern Railway had to have pusher engines to help the regular trains across the divide. In the winter the railroad maintained a large crew to keep the tracks free of ice and snow. The engine crews and the track crews were housed in a barracks building right outside the park. Hill returned to Minneapolis/St. Paul from an inspection tour one summer and told his marketing VP that there was a barracks at Glacier less than half full. (In the summer, only train crews were housed there.) Find some way to make money off that building, he demanded. The VP called the big hotels in the area and asked who if anyone was going to Montana but refusing to pay the price for four star accomodations. The answer was consistent--the fishermen. The VP renamed the barracks The Isaac Walton Inn and started selling railroad/fishing packages. The place filled up and has been full ever since. The restaurant is good. The decor is 100% railroad. It is one of the most welcoming hotels I have ever visited but never stayed in. And, in order to enlarge the sleeping capacity, about a dozen caboose all painted in the classic design for their road sit in the forest surrounding the Inn. The main line of the BNSF crosses the continental divide along U.S. Highway 2 (Theodore Roosevelt Highway) very nearby. There are a lot of trains and the highway parallels the track. Thanks to Montana's extremely high speed limits, you can outrun the trains, stop on a rise, set up and be ready to shoot when the locomotive passes.
John C. "Captain Adventure" McLemore--Franklin, TN
Also for the Railroad Enthusiast, the Bow Valley Parkway from Banff to Lake Louise has one of the great railway corners for trainfans, Morrant's Curve. Depending on the month and time of day (whether or not the track is shut down for maintenance for a couple hours a day etc) you can expect to see trains through this section of track at least once an hour.
The corner is closer to Louise than Banff, there's a little pull out to the right if you're coming from Banff.
January 23 by Steven Szabo, on Flickr