Sunday, November 22, 2009

100 Years of the Little Yellow Train

A notable survivor of the numerous narrow gauge trains that used to criss-cross France is the Petit Train Jaune or little yellow train which climbs into the Pyrénnées mountains in French Catalonia.

More than just a rail link from village to village, the line of Cerdanya is undoubtedly an integral part of the regional identity. The metre-gauge line connects Villefranche-de-Conflent and the international station of La Tour-de-Carol on the Spanish border, 62 km away, with 22 station halts. The track rises to almost 1,600 metres altitude and serves the highest station in France: Bolquère-Eyne. There are also impressive examples of railway engineering traversed, and just as impressive is that the 100 year old electric trains are still in use. Needless to say it is a popular tourist attraction, and the popularity has necessitated additional new trains, although the charme of the century old rolling stock can't be replaced.

Books on this topic are naturally available in the transpress on-line shop.

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