All Aboard!!! Moose Jaw Camera Club Members Catch the Train from Ogema to Pangman
On July 25, 2015, several members of the Moose Jaw Camera Club, along with family and friends took a ride on the train on a very warm day and “rode the rails” from Ogema to Pangman, where we took a break to enjoy the Pangman farmer’s market and explore the town. The trip offered countless photo ops, and the staff ( wearing period costume were more than willing to pose for a photo. It was a great opportunity to experience what travel was like in the days before planes, buses and cars. More details on the Southern Prairie Railway can be found on their website at www.southernprairierailway.com.
Here is a little history: The first train was introduced to Saskatchewan in 1882. Train service is credited with ‘opening up the west’ as it allowed passengers and freight to move great distances in a fraction of the time than that of horses, wagons, and the other existing modes of transportation offered at the time. Passenger service by train was discontinued in southern Saskatchewan in January 1990 as a result of austerity measures by the major railways which also led to the abandonment of significant portions of rail line throughout the province.
Many of these abandoned lines (also known as “spurs”) were scooped up by co-operatives that formed “short line rail” services, primarily to move grain. However in 2012 one industrious group in Ogema, Saskatchewan started the “Southern Prairie Railway” the only tourist train, “short line rail”, in the province. Southern Prairie Railway offers a number of packages which range from a train ride from Ogema to Pangman (and back) to a variety of specialty trains (eg Mother’s Day).
Thank you to club member and our new Facebook Administrator John Meed for pulling together a short report and images from the July 25th Field trip.