The Best of Soo, Volume 1



Timeframe: 1979- 1985

Locations: Minnesota

Length: 100 minutes

Source: Bob Rivard

A show featuring Soo Line in and around the Twin Cities area. Bob Rivard’s original VHS tapes span years.

There is a detailed Chapter Menu. On-screen graphics provide all information. No narrative.


The action is highly enjoyable! The video quality shows it’s age. Majority of the video has a greenish cast. It is generally around the edges. Variable.


The audio is all live microphone. No narrative. On screen graphics provide: locations, dates and train designations. Additional details, from time to time.

There are the standard offenders. Wind noise and loud auto traffic sometimes.


The train sounds are excellent! A couple of standouts. F unit horns. The sound of GP7/ 9 quartets running wide open.


Experienced railfans will enjoy hearing these GP30 locomotives windup before departure!


The odd Alco diesel appears.


Some interline railroads are shown. Rock Island with an intriguing GP38 and possible GP7.


Scenes from various locations and years.


A couple of shoots with these SD60 demos.


Minneapolis, Northfield & Southern switchers are viewed in yard and pushed service.


Bob shoots in his own style. Close to the action. Some camera shake. Brings the viewer right into the scene.

Squawk box has radio traffic which add color to certain scenes. This is towards the end.


This show is a raunchy one! Off the chain. Color balance hangs by a thread. Audio levels need help at times. Usually, the liveliness adds drama to the visuals.


All in all, this is a somewhat wild ride. Technical issues hold down the stars. If the old Soo Line gets your interest. There are two volumes.

The video quality drags the rating down. Hardcore fans will still appreciate the rare action of the early Soo Line power.

Rating: 2 1/2 Stars



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