Another excellent trip to Bulgaria, this time built around the PTG ‘Bulgarian Track Bash 3’ which was to feature 87 haulage on the final day from Varna to Sofia largely via the Plovdiv mainline.
Having flown to Sofia early on Wednesday 5th October, we took a local service out to Pirdop where a sight for sore eyes greeted us with no fewer than eleven 87s at Pirdop, those being 003/007/008*/010/012/013*/020/022*/026/028/033, we even lucked out with 010 departing LE or Sofia and 007 shunting around between rakes of acid tanks.
We didn’t get so lucky on Thursday with fruitless festers around Karnobat, only viewing 026 and 034 at Razdelna in the dark and 006 on Varna shed, 006 then working throughout with the PTG tour on Friday from Varna right through to Sofia with some storming sections on the mainline between Karnobat and Sofia with some decent photostops thrown in aswell.
In case that wasn’t enough we then viewed 004/014*/029 on Poduyane Depot from the plane which helpfully took off in the right direction to allow a bit of spotting before it hit the clouds.
* denotes a loco stored out of service (to the best of our knowledge!)
Big thanks to the PTG for organising another 87 in Bulgaria for those of us desperate enough, even more welcome after the disappointment of Rail Blue Charters – will the two railtours in Bulgaria be the classes only passenger workings this year?