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DARJEELING LANDSCAPE SERIES - II(IMAGES OF LANDSCAPES FROM DARJEELING - SECOND IN A SERIES OF 5 IMAGES).

In this photograph you can see what is known as Toy Train in Darjeeling approaching Batasia near Darjeeling town and in the backdrop you can see the peak of Mt. Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world.

Some tidbits about the famous Toy Train of Darjeeling.

The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, also known as the "Toy Train", is a 2 ft (610 mm) narrow gauge railway that runs between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling in West Bengal. Built between 1879 and 1881, the railway is about 86 kilometres (53 mi) long. Its elevation level varies from about 100 metres (328 ft) at New Jalpaiguri to about 2,200 metres (7,218 ft) at Darjeeling. Four modern diesel locomotives handle most of the scheduled services: however the daily Kurseong-Darjeeling return service and the daily tourist trains from Darjeeling to Ghum (India's highest railway station) are handled by the vintage British-built B Class steam locomotive, DHR 778. The railway, along with the Nilgiri Mountain Railway and the Kalka-Shimla Railway, is listed as a Mountain Railways of India World Heritage Site. The headquarters of the railway is in the town of Kurseong.The railway line basically follows the Hill Cart Road which is partially the same as National Highway 55. Usually, the track is simply on the road side. In case of landslides both track and road might be affected. As long parts of the road are surrounded with buildings, the railway line often rather resembles urban tramway tracks than an overland line.To warn residents and car drivers about the approaching train, engines are equipped with very loud horns that even drown horns of Indian trucks and buses. Trains horn almost without pause.

The trip up to Darjeeling on railway has changed little since that time, and continues to delight travelers and rail enthusiasts, so much so that it has its own preservation and support group, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Society.

Several films have portrayed the railway. Especially popular was the song Mere sapno ki rani from the film Aradhana where the protagonist Rajesh Khanna tries to woo heroine Sharmila Tagore who was riding in the train.Other notable films include Barfi!, Parineeta and Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman. The Darjeeling Limited, a film directed by Wes Anderson, features a trip by three brothers on a fictional long-distance train based loosely on the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway.More recently the Toy train has been picturised in Popular Bollywood Movies Like Parineeta and Barfi.

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Additional Photos by Farhat Abbas (fabbs99) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1971 W: 2 N: 4008] (15747)
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