CP ‘Empress’ Challenges The “Big Hill”!

CP ‘Empress’ Challenges The “Big Hill”! | Train Fanatics Videos

The Big Hill is a vicious grade of track that ascends 1,070 feet in the space of 10 miles to the top of the Continental Divide at a peak of 5,340 feet!

Watch in the distance as CP 2816 Empress displays her billowing white steam as she treks up the Big Hill in the Canadian Rockies!

A 78 year old locomotive that has been lovingly restored to her original condition by the Canadian Pacific Railway to celebrate it’s heritage.

The CP 2816 Empress is the only survivor of a group of “Hudson” type locomotives built in the 1930’s by the Montreal Locomotive Works. The “Hudson” type locomotives were named after the Hudson River and was built as a high-powered, fast passenger locomotive. Her route included the distance between Winnipeg and Calgary.

With 4700 horsepower she regularly operated at 70 miles per hour!

After being retired in 1964, she sat on display in Ohio until the Canadian Pacific bought her back in 1998 and rebuilt her top to bottom. The restoration took over 2 years and cost upwards of $2,000,000. Her original cost to build was $120,000 back in 1930.

Today with inflation it would have cost $1,638,223 to build the Empress!

Quick Facts

  • Rail Line: Canadian Pacific
  • Train Name: Canadian Pacific CP 2816 Empress
  • Power type: 4-6-4 Steam Locomotive Hudson Class
  • Builder: Montreal Locomotives Works
  • Train type: Passenger
  • Location: Winnipeg to Calgary
  • Fuel: Coal changed to Oil

If you’ve ever taken a ride on the CP 2816 Empress on one of her excursion runs or a train like this let us know in the comments below! Would love to hear your experience on this classic piece of history!

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