Saturday, 7 June 2014

Suburban Scenary on the Joso Line

DMU Kantetsu 2300 seies arrives at Kokinu Station on the Joso Line
Kanto Railway, also known as Kantetsu, is my favorite local railway in Ibaraki Prefecture. They have two independent routes, namely the Joso and Ryugasaki lines. The Joso Line is Kantetsu's main line, which connects Toride and Shimodate cities. Its total operating length is 51.1km. The whole route is un-electrified.

The scenery along the Joso Line has two faces. The southern part of the line stretches through expanding suburban residential quarters, while in the northern part of the route, we can see beautiful idyllic views such as rice paddies and vegetable fields. The contrast of sceneries through the train window between the southern and northern parts of the route is my favorite.

Please look at the photos. They show the suburban sceneries in the southern part of the Joso Line. You can see the double track and residential areas. The size of the houses is larger than those of central Tokyo. The trains operate every 6 minutes during the morning commute; meanwhile, the daytime operation interval is 15 minutes on average. A diesel rail car or 2-car DMU is seen on the track.

The DMU KiHa 2300 series (top photo) and diesel rail car 2200 series (bottom photo) are representative models on the Joso Line. The DMU 2300 series was launched in 2000 as Kantetsu's first DMU model, which has an Electric Commanding Brake (ECB) system. The 2200 series was launched in 1997 as a diesel rail car, which has bolsterless bogies.

Diesel rail car Kantetsu 2200 seies arrives at Kokinu Station on the Joso Line
More information about the Kantetsu's rolling stock (in Jaanese):