Everything is exceptional in this picture :
- This line is the “Petite Ceinture”, i.e. the little belt line of Paris. It is a formerly circular line located within Paris city limits. It is closed to all traffics and it is only a matter of time before its precious land is re-developed into a green walkway, new buildings, sports facilities or else.
- On Jan 18, 2012, a section of the Petite Ceinture was re-opened for one unique train move. The last time a train rolled on these rails was 6 years earlier, and the next time might well be… never again? Indeed, this might be the very last train on Paris’ Petite Ceinture.
- The train was aimed at shunting 4 passenger cars used as a shelter for 2 non-governmental charity organizations from a tunnel where they had stayed for 6 years to another tunnel better adapted to the needs of these organizations.
- The engine is the now famous CC 72084. It belongs to the nearly extinct non-rebuilt CC 72000 series fitted with its original prime mover, and it is the only one keeping its as-built livery dating from 1967.
- The picture is shot at the most beautiful location of the Paris little belt line, inside the pleasant Montsouris Park.
For French railfans and beyond, this train has been the railroad event of the month in January.