The Scenic Route of British Columbia

This is the second booklet advertising the Pacific Great Eastern shown here; the first one was dated after 1959, as it mentions Alaska becoming a state in that year. This one is from several years before, as the railway described in this booklet only extended as far south as Squamish, British Columbia; the connection to North Vancouver was completed in 1956.

Click image to download a 12.7-MB PDF of this 20-page booklet.

The booklet mentions 1952, the year the railway reached Prince George, so it must be from 1953 through 1955. The passenger cars shown in the booklet are mostly wooden cars converted from interurbans. Although the booklet says the passenger trains were all hauled by Diesels, at least one photo shows a train with a steam locomotive.

The booklet describes several all-expense tours people can take over the railway. At that time, travel from Vancouver to Prince George was an overnight trip; the introduction of RDCs made it a one-day trip. Before the RDCs, the train not only had sleepers and a diner, it had an open-air car, for at least the southern part of the trip, for the best possible sightseeing.

Click image to download a 463-KB PDF of this postcard.

After the Budd cars replaced the ancient passenger cars shown in the above brochure, the trip was shortened to just a day and so no sleepers were needed. I rode these cars once but can’t remember what kind of food service was offered. It was probably just snacks and beverages. The back of this postcard is a 1971 note to someone in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho from someone “sailing” up the Inside Passage on the Matanuska ferry to Juneau. Perhaps they took PGE to Prince George and CN to Prince Rupert, catching the ferry to Juneau there.

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