With Autumn’s colours at their peak, a lone EMD GP9RM guides Canadian National test train no. 999 through the backwoods of Parry Sound. Although this bucolic scene is reminiscent of a branchline, in actuality, it’s big time railroading. Number 999 is moving right along at track speed on CN’s Bala Subdivision, which is the transcontinental mainline linking Eastern and Western Canada. In a rare move, this train would run northbound on a line that almost always operates southbound due to the Directional Running Zone agreement between CN & CP in Northern Ontario.