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T o     A l a s k a

The Fraser River seen from the British Columbia Railway

The standard-gauge Alaska Railroad Seward - Anchorage - Fairbanks was completed in 1923. During season there are running yellow/dark-blue tourist trains. Then stainless second-hand full-length dome cars were introduced, running for Westours, from 1971 a subsidiary of Holland America Line, conveying cruise passengers. Under the label Wilderness Express, rebuilt bi-level cars were added for Royal Caribbean International cruise passengers. The nice GM/EMD F diesels however have gone.

The British Columbia Railway in Canada connected only with the Alaska Highway. The “Whistler Mountaineer“ was created in 2006 as a tourist attraction.

Also the 3ft-gauge White Pass & Yukon Railway was important only for the Alaska Highway, used by the U.S. Military Railway Service during WWII. Now cruise ships are coming to its starting-point Skagway and steam excursions for tourists are offered. The Bering Strait tunnel projects were a matter of science fiction only.

Alaska Railroad Express with F7 and two B diesel units on Hurricane Gulch Bridge, mile post 284.2, the Alaska Range in the background (Alaska Railroad)

Seasonal express Anchorage – Fairbanks with Westours dome cars, August 1989 (Wolfram Veith)

A classic Alaska Railroad passenger train with two F type diesels on the Riley Creek Bridge, in the background the Alaska Range (Alaska Railroad)

Express to Fairley with cars of Alaska Railroad (left), Holland America Line and Princess Cruises at McKinley Park Station, August 2011 (Roger Wollstadt, via Wikimedia)

White Pass & Yukon Railroad, first train to White Pass, 1899 (Eric A. Hegg, via Wikimedia)

White Pass parlor cars, 2005 (Jadecolour, via Wikimedia)

Direct-to-the-Wilderness train in Alaska (advertisement Princess Cruises)