Monday, January 18, 2016

Monday 18 January - Mulhouse

I took the TGV Lyria from Gare de Lyon to Mulhouse today.  We left precisely on time and only made one stop at Belfort.  We ran very slowly through Dijon and finished up about six minutes late. The train was running through to Basel and Zurich.  Outside the station at Mulhouse I purchased a day ticket and went out to the Cite du Train which bills itself as the largest railway museum in Europe.  Both the city yellow No. 3 route trams and the SNCF blue tram trains go out to the museum. Of course SNCF have to label their trains TT even though the no. 3 trams make the same stops and there is a common ticket system.  The tram trains run further out than the yellow trams and change voltage to the SNCF system.
A tram train at the Gare Central
The museum was empty, in fact, I believe I was the only visitor.  It was great wandering around with the whole place to myself.   The exhibits have not changed very much particularly the first historic part but I was able to spend as much time as I wanted.  It was good to see one of the turbo trains that I rode in the cab from Saint-Lazare to Caen and back as well as one of the big 65xx electrics that I rode to Dijon a few years ago.
Micheline Railcar
Illustrating a locomotive damaged by wartime bombing
Tank wagon for wine in the Hereault.
I rode one like this out of Gare de Lyon to Dijon in pre-TGV days
A blazon from the RTG gas turbine train
I saw the Fleche d'Or in steam days at Calais with Brian while we were doing our training on British Railways
Of course the restaurant was empty so I decided to chance my luck in town so I caught a tram train back to the station.  I am sure most riders do not have the slightest idea of the difference between the yellow trams and the blue trams.
Lievre (hare)

The restaurant at the station was very good.  The plat du jour was lievre (hare) so I had to have that.  Along with a glass of red Saumur and a coffee the total came to 19 euros with free wi-fi thrown in.  I was dining with trains in front and trams behind.

The trip back was another Lyria from Zurich with the same crew.  This time there was one stop at Dijon.  We arrived back precisely on time.  There are two stretches of high speed line.  Between Paris and Montbard (Dijon) this is the original line which was built for 260 kmph and subsequently raised to 300 kmph.  The second section between Villiers-les-Pots (Dijon) and Petit Croix (Belfort) is more recent and was built for 300 kmph although trains are allowed to run at 320 kmph if they are running late. There is a screen which gives progress including speed (when we are running over about 200 kmph). Our speed on the older section did not exceed 300 kmph but we ran up to about 319 kmph on the newer section.  Speed seems to vary quite a bit according to the gradients being traversed.  I thought there was a universal speed control on these trains similar to cruise control on a motor vehicle but apparently not.

Click here to see all pictures taken st the Mulhouse Museum

Click here to see all pictures taken of Mulhoouse trams

Click here to see all pictures taken at Mulhouse Museum on a visit with Paul in 2012

Click here to see pictures of Mulhouse trams taken in 2012

We had another excellent meal at Le P'tit Canon this evening
Gambas with risotto

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