Sunday, 4 September 2011
The Journey of the Little Yellow Train, France.
A small bright yellow train with cherry red trim has meandered its way through the French Catalan Pyrenees in the Languedoc Roussillon region near the Spanish border, connecting remote and isolated mountain villages for over 100 years. Popular with travellers, le train jaune tracks through dramatic alpine scenery over towering bridges, tunnels gouged through the mountains and a number of viaducts. The train departs from the travel wonder medieval village of Villefrance-de-Confluent. The track bends and curls between mountains, ploughing into the inky darkness of a tunnel when no other paths are available. At several points on the journey, the train travels high via bridges and viaducts over the forested valley floor including the vertigo-inducing Séjourné Viaduct with its dramatic double-decker arching. Tiny stations whisk past, the train only stopping at more major stops unless signalled by a passenger to stop. The train needs all its power too as it climbs to Bolquère-Eyne, France’s highest rail station at almost 1600 metres. The train train crosses a plateau and tumbles down into the final stop at Latour-de-Carol.