This title picture shows an ICN train coming down from the Gotthard mountain pass on its way towards the city of Zürich. ICN stands for InterCity Neigezug, InterCity tilting train.
Picture from Wassen station 1.5.2016 by Ilkka Siissalo.


FUNET railway pictures archive - Switzerland

Switzerland is one of the world’s leading train countries: a mountainous small piece of land, where building a train line up the mountain side seems like the most stupid thing to do. Yet, in addition to the state railroad company SBB, there are over 30 private railway companies. The Swiss make use of all thinkable and unthinkable gauge widths, electricity systems, control systems, ticketing systems etc. The majority of the trains run on the "wrong side" compared to road traffic (Left handed traffic due to the old British influence; some of the country’s oldest rail companies used to be owned by London businessmen in the mid 1800s !) - it’s all extremely complicated, extremely odd and extremely fascinating for the occasional train enthusiast visitor.

And the Swiss do use their trains - maybe more than anybody else. No matter the outrageous train ticket prices, among the locals it’s still commonday practise even now in the beginning of the 2000s to take the train for any trip longer than 100 km - something which rarely happens anywhere else in the western world.


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A class HGe II electric cog wheel narrow gauge locomotive of the Matterhorn-Gotthardbahn MGB. Switzerland is full of private railroads with all kinds of gauge widths and electric systems. Some of the alpine narrow gauge trains climb even to the height of three kilometres from sea level. This picture is from Andermatt 1.5.2016 by Ilkka Siissalo.


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