February 2006 peak times : CC 6500s in action

After December 2005, only TER (regional trains) activity was keeping a stock of 8 CC6500s in service for its own needs. Locomotives were CC 6534, 6545, 6549, 6551, 6558, 6559, 6561 and 6575.

This final stock of CC 6500s was then intensively used towards Maurienne and Tarentaise alpine valleys during peak week-ends of winter 2005/2006.

Weather being nice on the week-end of February 11/12 2006, many photographers loving CC 6500s went in these two alpine valleys.

And it was worthwhile doing so as on Saturday February 11th, no less than four CC 6500s were used on Alpine lines. In addition events lead to have the 4 locomotives operated representing each of the four subseries (if counting former CC 21000 as a subseries) : CC 6534, CC 6558, CC 6561 and CC 6575 (former CC 21000).

February 11th 2006

First good surprise of the day : CC 6558 is replacing a more modern BB 22200.
It is seen here between St Pierre d'Albigny and St Jean de le Porte, on headend of train No 883 358 Modane-Lyon Part Dieu.

In the background is the “Dent d'Arclusaz” mountain reaching 2040 meters / 6700 ft.

A "must" of February 2006 peak times : double deck train Lyon-Bourg St Maurice was pulled by a CC 6500 up to Albertville.

On this February 11th, it is CC 6575 which is pulling this TER train No 17591. During the bight before CC 6575 had taken this train empty from Laroche in Burgundy (Laroche 2:06 AM, Lyon 7:40 AM).

CC 6575 is seen here with its double deck train in Fréterive, between Saint-Pierre d'Albigny and Alberville, on the Tarentaise single track line which follows Isère river.

Back on the Maurienne line to catch train TER 883 309 Chambéry-Modane pulled by CC 6561 (Chambéry 11:17 AM, Modane 12:41 AM).
Picture is taken between Saint-Pierre d'Albigny and Aiguebelle, in Chamousset.

A little higher in the Maurienne valley, CC 6561 is seen passing fast on head end on its 10 cars train.

A beautiful red a white German train pulled by a BB 26000 locomotive was closely following CC 6561.

CC 6561 is seen after arriving in Modane, near French locomotives depot. Driver has lifted up the two pantographs.

Only at this place, a little amount of snow can be seen along the tracks. Medium weight of that train did not require locomotive gear reducer switching. It stayed on “high speed” ratio.

Modane : It was about 1:00 PM. CC 6561 had « turned around » its train to go on head end on Chambery side,  for a new service which was train No 883 360 Modane-Lyon Perrache (Modane 1:49 PM, Lyon 4:40 PM).

From Lyon-Perrache, it would depart again at 5:13 PM to Chambéry with train No 792 957.

On Sunday, CC 6561 was taken back in a locomotive train from Chambéry to Vénissieux depot, without pulling any other train.

On its way back, CC 6561 is seen along the Arc River near Saint-Michel de Maurienne.
This is the bottom of the valley and sun wasn’t showing a good orientation for picture but CC 6500 and its train are shining.

Another regional train, still in the Maurienne valley, pulled by beautiful CC 6534, the last 6500 of first subseries still in service.
This regional train No 883 313 Lyon Perrache-Modane seen here near Argentine.
(Lyon 12:07 AM, Modane 3:03 PM).
It had come across CC 6561 few minutes before. CC6500s were then well active in the area, on head end of nice trains, making photographers happy !

Still CC 6561 seen a little lower in the valley.

While we were chasing CC 6561 in the Maurienne valley, CC 6558 went from Lyon-Part Dieu to Alberville with TER train No 883 206, still replacing a BB 22200.

Beautiful, it is seen here in Alberville station, waiting to take over a train from Bourg St Maurice to Chambéry.

Double deck train back from Bourg St Maurice to Lyon-Part Dieu near St Pierre d'Albigny.

Great scenery in spite of little snow. This rare picture of a CC 6500 on head end of a double deck train was unfortunately not repeated in 2007.

Moon (left, under overhead lines) met CC 6558 !
Picture taken on the Tarentaise single track line, between Alberville and Frontenex.

CC 6558 is seen heading towards Chambéry with a regional train No 883 264. We were at least a dozen of CC 6500s fans there, side by side to catch this picture.

Time was 4:30 PM, sun was setting.

After sunset, CC6500s continued their services :
In Chambéry, CC 6534 coming back from Modane is seen during a stop on head end of train TER 883 368 to Lyon-Perrache. It had left Modane at 6:34 PM and would reach its destination at 10:04 PM.

Driver chats with manager on duty. Thus on this Saturday February 11th, four CC 6500s were operating in Maurienne and Tarentaise valleys !

Sunday February 12th 2006

Nice weather just like the day before … and CC 6575 was again pulling the double deck train from Lyon to Alberville.
It is seen here in Fréterive, with Miolans castle in the background.

That Sunday, CC 6500s were less active than the day before :
- CC 6575 made a return trip to Alberville with double deck train ;
- CC 6534 made a return trip Lyon-Modane ;
- and CC 6545 which had not been used the day before, made a return trip Lyon-Geneva.

Special thanks to friends and members of APCC 6570 (Fabrice, Lionel, François, Baptiste, ...) who were also there in Maurienne and Tarentaise that week end of February 11 and 12th 2006 (as well as previous and following week-end for some of them ...), and also to our friend Jean-Louis thanks to whom these pictures have been taken !

Ensemble des photos : Pierre Chavernac

Back to page top
Photos gallery
Home page