| 22 min

Also available

This is a short documentary about winter railroading in the Canadian Rockies and the men who keep the lines clear. The stretch between Revelstoke and Field, British Columbia, is a snow-choked threat to communications. The film shows the work of section hands, maintenance men, train crews and telegraph operators.

Pedagogical evaluations and study guides are only available to CAMPUS subscribers.


Features designed specifically for teachers. Learn more

Already subscribed? Sign in

Embed this code on your site

Railroaders, Guy L. Coté, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

Video player width

by Reset
  • director
    Guy L. Coté
  • script
    Guy L. Coté
  • editing
    Guy L. Coté
  • executive producer
    Tom Daly
  • photography
    John Spotton
  • sound
    George Croll
  • sound editing
    Stuart Baker
  • animation
    Sidney Goldsmith
  • music
    Robert Fleming
  • narrator
    Geoffrey Hogwood

  • None

    Wonderful documentary - thank-you. Another of your films to show my three Grandsons. I couldn't agree more with comments made about the beautiful handwriting - sad.

    None, 25 Feb 2022
  • None

    My Favorite. My Great-grandfather was foreman of a tie-laying crew of 30 men as the Canadian Pacific Railroad was building westward. I still have his tools, including a 5 foot saw and 20 inch draw knives.

    None, 13 Nov 2020
  • None

    That dispatcher has beautiful handwriting something not taught in todays classrooms.

    None, 27 Feb 2020
  • Ralphc

    As a young man I worked for two summer as a lowly groundman on survey parties along the railroad (CNR) . Took the gas chigger from Union Station in Toronto all the way north to Washago then to Parry Sound. Travelled many miles from coast toi coast for the company during construction of several microwave systems. When working as a groundman , we had bunk cars and lived in them all summer working between Parry Sound and Capreol. The sounds and smells of the soot from the engine are brought back by this film It is really entertaining and very real in the life of those railroaders. Thanks

    Ralphc, 13 Feb 2012
  • EdsUpUSA

    I retired from the railroad in 2008 after 33 years. I was an Operator in Michigan in my early years, and I remember much of this stuff - including the snow! Wonderful film - an historical treasure.

    EdsUpUSA, 10 Jan 2012
  • dafydd

    A treasure that is truly inspirational and uplifting! The importance of Community and caring for each other is apparent key amongst these wonderful people. I applaud them all! I promise not to complain about the tough winters in Sweden after viewing this. Certainly I will be watching and enjoying again and again with joy and humility!

    dafydd, 1 Apr 2011
  • CNWFan

    "Railroaders" is an outstanding comment on how railroading was. The procedures shown give a great feel for what it must have been to be a railroad man back in the day. I only hope that still exists in today's world.

    CNWFan, 23 Feb 2011
  • David_Snyder_Lumierist

    Canada's life blood flowing from sea to sea, in silver steel threads ,carrying our Country's commercial greatness,, binding us together as one great nation under God. Thrilling to watch it all again and again!

    David_Snyder_Lumierist, 19 Feb 2011
  • Hoggerdave

    Though I'm railroading in the present this film brings back memories as my career really has bridged "era's" so to speak. There really was a certain romance about working for the railroad which has been lost in technology.

    Hoggerdave, 13 Feb 2011
  • glassdancer2003

    Love this movie. I remember some of these men and was happy to see my uncle, the man switching the trains when they met at the siding. Very dedicated workers keeping a difficult section of track clear.

    glassdancer2003, 4 Feb 2011
  • L55

    Very enjoyable, Even though times have changed on the railroad many things stayed the same. As a rail your part of a family.

    L55, 1 Feb 2011
  • phoneman

    This documentary is truly a treasure. The artistic filming provides an accurate view of how these dedicated workers used the technology of the time to get a difficult job done. It may be of special interest to present day communication workers.

    phoneman, 13 Jan 2011

The NFB is committed to respecting your privacy

We use cookies to ensure that our site works efficiently, as well as for advertising purposes.

If you do not wish to have your information used in this way, you can modify your browser settings before continuing your visit.

Learn more