FolkestoneJack's Tracks

Rakhov to Kolomiya

Posted in Delyatin, Kolomiya, Rakhov, Tatariv, Ukraine, Voronenko, Yasinya by folkestonejack on February 21, 2008

After our early start to the day at Berlibash we returned to familiar territory at Rakhov around 9.15am and spent a little while here before retracing the route back to Kolomiya. The combination of light snow and grey skies made the place seem gloomier than it had in the fading light of the previous day. Nevertheless, the view across the valley as we headed north was quite spectacular even under such poor conditions. The river that ran through it looked as though it had a series of icebergs floating midstream, though I’m sure it was just a series of small snowy islands!

The station at Rakhov

Turntable at Rakhov

We retraced our steps to Yasinya by late morning where we discovered a wonderfully rural scene with cockerels wandering amongst the tracks and a family carving the carcass of a pig stretched out on a wooden rack in the open air. At times it felt like you were stepping back into time, particularly with some of the local traffic – a horse pulling a wooden cart that looked like it had stepped out of the middle ages or on another occasion, pulling a sleigh. The area provided a wonderful landscape of wooden cottages, wonderful wooden hay stores and animal shelters. The 21st century wasn’t entirely absent though – many of the cottages had sprouted satellite dishes!

2M62 at Yasinya

Em 0-10-0 and Er 0-10-0 double header

In the early afternoon we enjoyed a false departure and two run pasts at Voronenko, which I thought was a great spot. In particular, the sight of the L in steam within a snowy landscape bordered by forest somehow seemed very appropriate. We waited a little for a regular passenger service to cross here which gave me a little chance to explore. At the station there was a small sobering memorial which I assume recorded those who gave their lives during the Second World War.

Em 0-10-0 735-72 and Er 0-10-0 797-86 at Voronenko

D1 diesel multiple unit at Voronenko

L class steam locomotive 5141 at Voronenko

Another couple of runpasts took place at Tatariv, with the L once again the star of the show. I thought she looked superb heading straight towards us in the wintry landscape with the mountains in the distance.

L class steam locomotive 5141 approaches Tatariv

Our next stop came at Delyatin which we reached just after 3pm. After a 40 minute wait we photographed a false start and then re-boarded for a real departure at about 4pm. In the time that we were stationary a number of local children came out to look at the locomotives. It reminded me how lucky I am – although I am too young to have seen steam in day-to-day use in the UK I have at least had the chance to experience steam on charters like this, which will be an option that will finish here in the Ukraine with this trip.

Em 0-10-0 735-72 is observed by local children at Delyatin

Our return to Kolomiya should have been the end to the day’s travels, but there was now a problem with the supply of water for the carriages on the train. It was proposed that the train would leave Kolomiya after 10pm and head to Ivano-Frankovsk to collect water and recharge the batteries before returning to Kolomiya ready for the morning start – quite an exercise in time and logistics. However, in the end a way to resolve the problem was found using a standpipe. Overnight the train was shunted back and forth so that each carriage could be filled with water from the standpipe. I defy anyone to sleep under those conditions!

Sunset at Kolomiya