Goggles and Grumpies to the Krkonose

27 September - 01 October

Report by Duncan Cotterill


The scenic line from Jaromer to Trutnov has seen a renaissance of diesel hauled passenger working in the last couple of years in contrast to the slow decline of loco hauled workings elsewhere. After first exploring the line earlier this year I returned to spend five days on the line from 27 September to 1 October.

The Line

The Jaromer end of the line is flat and fairly uninspiring but from Starkoc to Suchovrsice it runs through some very attractive country with plenty of good photo locations. Suchovrsice to Trutnov is heavily wooded and almost impossible to photograph. The line is single track throughout and Cerveny Kostelec still has semaphore signals

Passenger Services

Passenger trains run from Trutnov to Jaromer at approximately hourly intervals with fast trains and all stations locals alternating. The fast trains run through to Hradec Kralove with most continuing to Praha or beyond. Apart from one morning trip from Trutnov to Hradec Kralove (Sp1783), all are loco hauled. Most stopping passengers and Sp1783 are booked for the stylish class 854 railcars but the occasional class 810 4-wheel railbus shows up as well.

The loco hauled trains are booked for class 754 diesels but Letohrad doesn't have enough of the class for the 5 day diagram covering the lines from Hradec Kralove to Trurnov and Letohrad. Class 750s have often been used as substitutes but during my visit it was Letohrad's finest class 749s that were filling the gaps. Immaculate 749 240 was a regular and 749 008 and 749 011 both showed up on occasions. 754 030/048/051/061 handled the bulk of services.

A number of railcars were hauled or piloted by class 742s, usually to get locos in place for their next freight working but not always. On Friday 28 September 742 254/093 piloted 854 205 on southbound Sp1783. Later in the day, they returned north, unusually piloting 749 240 on R653. On Saturday 29 September 742 185 hauled a defective 854 013 to Jaromer and back on Os15407 and Os15410. To cap it all, I left the area on Tuesday 2 October on Sp1783 hauled by 742 254/093/280. There was a northbound coal train waiting at Jaromer so I expected the first two locos to be removed there and return north on that. However all three locos ran through to Hradec Kralove.


There isn't a great deal of freight on the Trutnov line and I was there over a holiday weekend so very little ran during my visit. Freights are booked for pairs of class 742s, inevitably coupled cab to cab making them a very unphotogenic prospect.


It was just as well that I set aside five days to cover the Trutnov line as it was 17:00 on day 3 before the sun finally came out. Fortunately the remaining two days were predominantly sunny. The stations on the line are generally fairly closely spaced and there is a good network of footpaths in the area so getting to the positions is relatively straightforward. The timing of trains is such that the local passengers can be used to move between locations without having to miss any loco hauled workings.


I stayed in at the 4* Hotel u Beranka in Nachod on the parallel Tyniste nad Orlici - Mezimesti line. Connections with the Trutnov line trains at Starkoc are excellent so this is a good option in spite of being off the line. The u Beranka is an excellent hotel, situated in the town square and less than 10 minutes walk from the station.


The Trutnov - Jaromer line is an excellent place to photograph diesel hauled trains. The scenery is very attractive, there are many good locations and loco hauled services are frequent enough to keep you busy. Virtually every engine is in a different livery and all look good except drab, dirty grey/green 754 030. The use of Letohrad's 749s was most welcome and added to the variety.

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