Ligne de Cerdagne

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The unusual rail suspension bridge at Pont Gisclard between Sauto and Planès

The Ligne de Cerdagne, often called the Yellow Train (French: Train Jaune, Catalan: Tren Groc), is a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in) railway that runs from Villefranche-de-Conflent to Mont-Louis in France. It was started in 1903 and the section to Mont-Louis was completed in 1910, followed by an extension to Latour-de-Carol in 1927.[1]

It is 63 kilometres (39 mi) long and climbs to 1,593 metres (5,226 ft) at Bolquère-Eyne, the highest railway station in France. There are 19 tunnels and two bridges, one of which is, unusual for a railway bridge, a suspension bridge. The trains are powered by electricity at 850 volts DC, supplied by third rail. The power comes from hydro-electric generators on the River Têt.

There are open and closed cars. The open cars are a favourite with tourists enjoying dramatic views as the train climbs the twisting track. The maximum speed of the train is 55 km/h (34 mph).

It is named after its yellow and red colours, derived from the Catalan flag.

List of stations[edit]

Crossing a viaduct

Electrical discharges[edit]

In 1911, railway workers reported a fireball on the third rail between kilometres 28 and 40. A similar phenomenon occurred again when a train was hit by one of these fireballs during a thunderstorm. Lightning rods were installed where these events had occurred, the phenomena has not been reported since installation.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pourageaux G (2008), Les cent ans du Train Jaune, Editions La vie du rail. (French)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°30′14″N 2°07′40″E / 42.50389°N 2.12778°E / 42.50389; 2.12778