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Trivia: Your longest and/or most unusual end to end trip?

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najaB

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I dare say that there are a few Aberdeen-Penzance victims passengers among the forum membership but, that aside, what's the longest route that you've travelled all the way from where the train started to where it terminated, and/or what's the most uncommon?

For me the longest would be Inverness to Euston on the sleeper. The most unusual would be Tweedbank to Dundee - unusual in that there is only one a day on weekdays, and none in the opposite direction. It's also a bit unusual in that it doesn't call at Stow.
 
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HST274

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In England? If anywhere I went to Sicily by train once. Most unusual in England is when I travelled to Penzance from Worcester via London to catch the sleeper. This is more unusual in that the train journey I went on to London went via Swindon with two changes (for fun of course, absolutely not necessary). The guard on I believe a Cheltenham to Swindon train stared at the ticket dare I say near two minutes before noticing the via Swindon but made no comment which I found quite amusing.
 

Journeyman

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I haven't done Aberdeen to Penzance, but I did Dundee to Penzance, which was the longest journey possible at the time I did it (early 1996). It took twelve and a quarter hours and was pretty gruelling, but fun to get under my belt and an interesting experience. Did it in an HST in old late-BR InterCity configuration, of course, which was alright really, but I certainly felt somewhat claustrophobic and uncomfortable by the time I got to Penzance. I think the front power car had some problems, as we were a bit late, and the engine wasn't running when I got off the train. Also the whole side of the power car was covered in oil, which can't be good.

I'd got straight off the sleeper at Dundee to get on the train, and took the sleeper back from Penzance to London. By the end of that marathon set of journeys I was massively sleep-deprived and didn't know which way was up.
 

The exile

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I dare say that there are a few Aberdeen-Penzance victims passengers among the forum membership but, that aside, what's the longest route that you've travelled all the way from where the train started to where it terminated, and/or what's the most uncommon?

For me the longest would be Inverness to Euston on the sleeper. The most unusual would be Tweedbank to Dundee - unusual in that there is only one a day on weekdays, and none in the opposite direction. It's also a bit unusual in that it doesn't call at Stow.
Longest in the UK for me is almost certainly the southbound Highland Chieftain from end to end in 1987 (Young Persons' Railcard Promotion meant Bristol to Inverness; out direct, return via London was £12) - it being a Sunday, diversions were the order of the day - in our case via Aberdeen, which unfortunately meant that by the time we got to the "interesting" diversions (I think Leamside and Sleaford were also on that day), the ECML was open as normal. Don't have the timings, but it was 630-ish miles on the same train.
Elsewhere - the longest was definitely Stockholm to Narvik in 1991 (22 hours) - but topped in "perceived duration" by Zürich to Belgrade in 2018. That was "only" 20 hours, but thanks to Balkan lack of observance of "No Smoking" regulations (and air conditioning maintenance schedules?) it felt a lot longer. Wouldn't have missed it for the world, though (nor the 12 hour Belgrade - Bar trip and return that followed it!)
 

SteveM70

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Longest - Alice Springs to Adelaide on the Ghan, circa 1994. Big comfy leather(ette) chairs, the buffet did Chinese food, and a fair few cans of Emu. It’s about 900 miles I think, and took roughly 24 hours. We arrived in Adelaide mid-morning, got a tram down to Glenelg, had lunch and a mooch around, tram back to Adelaide and then an overnight train to Melbourne. I was knackered by the end of it
 

XAM2175

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My longest end-to-end is the XPT between Melbourne and Sydney, which I've done a total of three times, all overnight in a twinette compartment. My records indicate that the most recent time was the slowest; departing Melbourne at 1950 and arriving Sydney at 0703, for 673 minutes aboard.

I don't particularly think I've done anything hugely unusual, but uncommon... well, after that Melbourne - Sydney trip I then did the Sydney - Armidale trip end to end to as well. Departed 0930 and arrived 1732, and that was on the equivalent of a Class 159 with a buffet :E

Anybody sane would have flown, which from Melbourne would have taken six hours tops including a very leisurely connection in Sydney and quite probably been cheaper too.
 

ac6000cw

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All from the 1980s:

In the USA, the California Zephyr (Chicago - Oakland, 2438 miles) and the Southwest Chief (LA - Chicago, 2265 miles), both around 2 days duration - in seated accommodation all the way (couldn't afford sleepers, and I was much younger then!)

Longest train journey with changes was Oakland - LA (change), LA - Chicago (change), Chicago - Washington DC. About three days and 3500 miles from end to end on just three trains, and a transcontinental Pacific to (almost) Atlantic coast journey.

Longest in Europe (with changes) was St. Polten (near Vienna) to Koln, then Oostende, then overnight ferry, then train to Birmingham.

Longest in UK (with changes) is probably Cambridge - Newcastle (via GE-GN joint line to Doncaster, then ECML to York, then via Sunderland) - Carlisle - overnight to Inverness - out and back trip to Kyle of Localsh.
 

route101

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Longest by duration in UK would be the sleeper London to Glasgow via the ECML. With changes, Glasgow to Portsmouth/Norwich.
 

birchesgreen

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Leningrad to Moscow sleeper train in the late 80s, unfortunately i was a callow youth so do not remember a great deal about it

In the UK Brighton - Birmingham. Some years ago too, Class 47 haulage throughout, nice.
 

mrcheek

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Longest Ive done is the Highland Chieftain. 8 hours really is too long to be on the same train.

I went north on it in 2010, coming back by a much more convoluted route. (I actually did Weston-super-Mare to Inverness and back, only duplicating about 25 miles of track on the whole journey). Then I did the southern journey a few years later, this time having arrived in Inverness via a different route.
 

Mcr Warrior

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Longest I've done is the Sunday night sleeper from Fort William to London. Very pleasant journey on the section to Central Scotland.

However, the heating then failed and the train arrived in Euston just over an hour late, so certainly an experience and eventually got a bundle of RTVs as compo. :s
 

xotGD

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Longest for me is Euston to Fort William throughout, followed by the return the next night.

Interesting would be Carlisle to Lancaster throughout via the Cumbrian Coast, when it was 37s.
 

Oxfordblues

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Moscow-Pyongyang via Ulan Bataar and Beijing (7 days including stopover in Mongolia). Then across the Democratic People's Republic from Pyongyang to Rason via Hamhung and Chongjing (which had real live steam). That was quite some trip!
 

62484GlenLyon

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Sunday 2nd February 1986 - 10.05 Inverness to Kings Cross via Aberdeen and the Abbeyhill triangle in Edinburgh to turn the HST which was wrong way round leaving Inverness.

Also Sunday 3rd June 2018 - Euston to Fort William sleeper via Northampton, WCML then Cumbernauld, Carmuirs Jns, Falkirk Grahamston, Polmont, Edinburgh (rev) the booked route to Fort William.
 

Kite159

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A Sunday Inverness - Kings Cross diverted via Carlisle & Tyne Valley after Edinburgh with extra stops after York.

Although a sleeper trip to Inverness via Aberdeen might beat it for me
 

rg177

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Trondheim to Bodø on the Nord/SJ day train and Wien Hbf to Venezia Santa Lucia by NightJet were both fairly long. As were Tokyo to Morioka and Shin-Osaka to Hakata on the Shinkansen.

Within the UK, I've done King's Cross to Newcastle via Cambridge/Ely and also via the Durham Coast on different occasions.

With changes in a 24hr period, I've travelled from Erlangen to Newcastle (taking around 21 hours, changing in Nürnberg, Frankfurt Flughafen, Düsseldorf, Aachen, Welkenraedt, Eupen (rev), Liége, Brussels, Tournai, Lille and London, with a diversion via Cambridge)
 
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Iskra

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I did once do Arlanda (Stockholm)-Narvik-Stockholm on consecutive sleeper trains, with just a couple of hours in Narvik, purely because it was a rail journey I've always wanted to do and that was the only way I could fit it in to the time available.

I have done many ridiculous itinerary's but I know when to plan a gap for rest or to allow for delays so it normally works out and I'm happy doing that kind of thing as you can cover more ground, places and trains :)

In the UK, I've done the full length of the Highland Chieftain in both directions before, which was very enjoyable as I did in 1st class on HST's. I've also done Inverness-Euston and Kings Cross plus Crianlarich-Euston on the sleeper. Basically, I find any journey enjoyable if it has decent rolling stock.
 

Gloster

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Around 1981 I did Penzance-Thurso without leaving BR property. This involved changes at Birmingham, Crewe, Glasgow Central, Partick, Glasgow Queen Street and Inverness. If I remember correctly I started from Penzance at 10.23 after having come down from Exeter on the sleepers (departure around 04.00) and Glasgow-Inverness was seated on the night train. I think that this was the occasion when the Far North train’s loco gave up at Invergordon, but the crew had realised this and help was already on the way in the form of another 26 which had been borrowed off a goods at Dingwall. I think I spent the next night sleeping on the floor of Dingwall South Signal Box. I wish I could still do all that.

I have also done the Clansman throughout and Exeter-Edinburgh without a change, the latter in an early Mark II. Abroad I have done Freiburg-Copenhagen and Stuttgart-Paris overnight. I have done several trips in Scandinavia, including Narvik-Stockholm, although I had to change coaches at Boden, Boden-Hallsberg and Stockholm-Trondheim, again changing coaches, this time at Storlien.
 

62484GlenLyon

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Turning to most unusual end-to-end my nomination features Trowse station. Easter 1986 Norwich was blocked by engineering work so the long closed station of Trowse was in use for bus connections to the city centre. I had these moves - Gt.Yarmouth to Trowse, DMU, and Trowse to Ipswich, 47569. These may not be unusual end-to-end moves but normal start to unusual end and unusual start to normal end is the best I can come up with!

I got to Gt.Yarmouth on a direct service from Liverpool St. via Cambridge and Reedham - 47596.
 

Calthrop

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The longest rail journey of my life so far, all on one train: has got to be Ljubljana to Oostende -- a little over 900km. per "beeline" -- done in summer 1970, returning to Britain from a holiday in central / eastern Europe. This was part of a complete journey -- "in one hop", broken only for train-changing -- from Bucuresti to Oostende: Bucuresti -- Ljubljana, another 850km.-odd "as crow flies". Trains were changed for sure, at Ljubljana; memories somewhat faded at a distance of half a century, and notes taken, long vanished -- I suspect that there might possibly be have been another change at Zagreb. At all events; one train Ljubljana -- Oostende, is for certain.
 

Techniquest

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Longest single journey for me would be London King's Cross to Inverness, done that in both directions in 2007. Another contender would be London Euston to Oban, February 2006, on the diverted sleeper. Entirely different situation if we're including changes...
 

TXMISTA

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Longest in the UK: King’s Cross to York on a Grand Central HST.

Longest abroad: Tokyo to Hiroshima. Just under 4 hours to travel 500 miles on the Tokaido Shinkansen.
 

zero

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I did Brighton to Kyle of Lochalsh with the shortest possible connections, with the longest individual train obviously being Euston to Inverness.

In Australia (Sydney regional network) I believe I went from Scone to Moss Vale with the shortest possible connection time, which may have been quite long, can't be bothered to find my notes.

In Europe I flew to Prague and spent the next 7 days on trains only stopping to sleep in a hotel on the nights when sleepers did not work with my plans. The longest individual train would have been Prague to Zurich or Vienna to Duesseldorf sleepers.
 

sftfan1909

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Longest, and pretty unusual, for me was a few weeks ago from Stonehaven to Penzance on 1V60. So technically I am not an Aberdeen - Penzance victim :D
 

xotGD

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I've done Manchester to Milford Haven throughout a couple of times. A long old ride on a DMU.
 

Journeyman

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My son is doing Edinburgh Gateway to Thurso on Tuesday. He was quite shocked to discover it takes nine hours!
 

Spamcan81

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Longest for me was a trip in China from Chengde to Galadasetai on the JiTong Railway. Travelled via Jining where there was a change of train. No idea of the distance but it took around 21 hours. The hard class sleeper on the JiTong section was an education. :)
 

_toommm_

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Longest is one of two:

Kings Cross to Inverness on the Highland Chieftian. A diversion was in order via Lincoln due to planned ECML closures. My train ended up in Inverness 45 late due train crew issue at Edinburgh, so with delay repay, I only paid £36 for a First Class journey of ten hours. Set off from KGX at 11:00, arrived Inverness just before 21:00. 596 miles.

Second was Edinburgh to Plymouth direct on the 06:06. Just over 9.5 hours. It was halfway through CrossCountry’s HST refurb, so I was hoping for a slam door, but got a power door which was disappointing. 602 miles.
 

185143

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Crewe to Johnston was a fair old way. I seem to remember a few people travelling most of the way talking about having been in Liverpool, so I wasn't the only one doing NW England-SW Wales. I'll be doing Carmarthen-Man Picc later today too.

Non-direct trains, I think my journey from Shanklin to Great Yarmouth overnight via Manchester will take some beating! Shanklin-Ryde-(Spoons)-Portsmouth-Waterloo-Euston-Crewe (on WMT as well)-Man Picc-Leeds-Peterborough-Norwich-Great Yarmouth. Actually, that said, I've also done Lakenheath-Duncraig. Again overnight, Lakenheath-Brandon-Cambridge-Tottenham Hale-Euston-Inverness-Duncraig. Sleeper diverted via Styal, Manchester and the Chat Moss too.
 
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