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Proud Earthling

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To Lake Balaton 1/2 (50 p.)

In this part we will deal with the Lake Balaton northern shore line from Tapolca, where mostly class M41-hauled long local, semi-fast and express trains often running through to Budapest-Déli are operating. Other large diesel locos can also sometimes be found here, as well as the occasional Desiros or class Bzmot units.
All images have been taken on July 6 2013, August 1 and 2 2012 and have largely been ordered geographically from west to east.

We mainly were lucky with the weather on the first Saturday this July, but on the horizon behind S 19703 it seemed due to the cloud formations as if all vulcanic cones of the area had erupted at the same time.

After a thirteen year break since being put out of service in the year 2000 on July 6 2013 once more a NOHAB entered regular MÁV passenger traffic, M61 017 had just left Tapolca with express 971 to Budapest.

A village hardly can get more idyllic than Nemesgulács.

Stork offspring times five!

In the morning of August 1 2012 we first checked into our accomodation at Balatongyörök, next we joined ideal chasing object S 16906 at Badacsonytördemic-Szigliget to get to know the line. The eight coach ex-DB rake stopped at every station, 418 330 (class M41) had to struggle at every acceleration. Additionally you could find some temporary speed restrictions we did not notice this year.


Next day we could escape the heat with the first train of the day under a full moon.

The line passes some vineyard terraces in the vicinity.

From this spot opposite Fonyód on the southern shore of Lake Balaton ...


... the view was not bad, for example at semi-fast train S 19704.

During the NOHAB trip to Tapolca with train 1974 the clouds still stayed in the background at Badacsonytomaj.

Upon returning we had to pass through an extreme shower, the streets looked like that after 3-4 minutes of rain.

Early morning crossing at Badacsonytomaj.

Another dominant mode of transport along Lake Balaton is the bicycle, here in the straight between Badacsonyörs and Ábrahámhegy.

At the latter place you can take nice pictures, in the morning of August 2 2012 we were positively surprised by M41 2143 in nostalgic livery hauling express 979.


418 313 with 9704 into the opposite direction in the afternoon.

This spot next to Révfülöp beach can only be photographed with the first train around 5 a.m., shortly later the view is blocked by parked cars. On August 2 2013 long S 19719 was driven by an engineer notching up fully after each stop - maybe because of the full moon, perhaps to keep the timetable with such a heavy load.

Exiting Révfülöp station you were invited to a dino-show.

Evening on the footbridge near Szepezdfürdö halt, S 19711 came as Desiro DMU.


Next day we spent a very necessary lunch break here.

An "Irish" castle built in the early 20th century and now used as a hotel can be seen.

In the morning we visited the "church spot" of Balatonszepezd.

The NOHAB had left the rain clouds behind.

No Lake Balaton without watermelon (= "dinnye") stalls!

M61 017 with 1974 departing Zánka-Köveskál - the image is level, only loco and lamppost stood crooked...

We reached Örvényes panoramic spot, on August 1 2012 we luckily caught a class M62-hauled train, namely S 9704 from Budapest pulled by 628 310.
This year we noticed one AC InterCity coach behind the loco in almost every consist, always shunted into the first postion again during reversal at Tapolca, so class M62 (without train heating) operations are unlikely this season.

The same day 971 was captured there in best evening light.

Smoke clouds were rising again as the early train accelerated out of Örvényes.

The sun had risen.

After a ferry crossing to the peninsula at noon we photographed S 16906 at nearby Aszófö with pretty old station lamps.


Express 971 waited for a crossing on July 6 2013, railway photographers always ran ahead and back to their coach at every station.

Behind the largest town in the northeastern corner of the lake, Balatonfüred, you can find this tele view between Balatonarács and Csopak, a panorama with lake view is also possible.

Soon afterwards the train passes this level crossing.

NOHAB with 1974 was also caught here.

We captured GySEV-Schlieren coach rake S 19606 spontaneously at once mightier station Alsóörs with sailboat, in the background express 971 was departing, but we only noticed that later when viewing this photo.

Time for a classic between Balatonfüzfö and Balatonkenese, at this angler spot to be reached via a wobbly wooden gangplank we ended our 70 kilometres long chase of S 16906.


Soon we gladly expected the class M62 into the other direction.

For this photo you had to wade through muddy water, but it paid off for S 19606.

418 142 rushed past me on the "Balaton Lakewall"... ;-)


For this first image of class M61 you have to climb along the rocks from the angler spot or cut your way through the reeds with a machete. A shorter, more direct path through the lake is also possible, but you might pay for it by getting stuck underwater in the mud up to your thighs.

Finally we reach the parade view of the "Hungarian Riviera" above the tunnel portal at Balatonakarattya. 418 316 struggled on the grade with the GySEV Schlieren coaches of S 19607 directly from Szombathely.

As perfect conclusion we arrived at the spot in the evening of July 6 2013 during rainfall - but with sunlight!


That way the passengers of 971 and we experienced the last view of Lake Balaton on the first day in the new regular operations life of M61 017...


Great Pictures. Is the M61-017 the only one of that type running near the lake? I was reading the history on the NOHAB website and it mentioned a couple more that were saved and how much the engineers and operating people liked the class of locomotives. And it is particularly interesting to me because the loco is based on my personal favorite locomotive, the EMD F unit. Thanks again. Maybe after I retire I can go to Europe. TomZ is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.

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