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The Charlie Maguire Songbook

Words and Chords to His Most Popular Songs

The B. C. Rail

Words & Music by Charlie Maguire © Mello-Jamin Music. All rights reserved.

The British Columbia Railroad maintains a passenger service which goes from Prince George in the north, to Vancouver in the south. The thirteen hour trip follows the Fraser River, some of the most spectacular scenery in North America. The train is only three coaches long and is powered by diesel "bud" cars that is, passenger cars that have the power unit built right into them. So unassuming is this train that it has even been charged by moose on several occasions.

Play Sample

When you're on the run, you can't do any better
         G                   E
Than to pack your grip for British Columbia
Traveling there when the weather is fair
It's a good job for a Yankee
When the moose get thick as the falling snow
       G                     E
Lying ten-feet-deep in the logging road
And the winter is only two days old
                   G     Am
Time for heading south, maybe


The B.C. Rail will take you down
G                            E
It will take you down from Prince George town
Along the Fraser, it's a hell of a show
To North Vancouver oh-aye-oh
To North Vancouver-O!

You are working your way from Rupert Bay
To the mountains on the Yellowhead Highway
There is many and hour, in many a day
When you wished you were not driving
The black ice there will take your life
Give you a little gray hair overnight
But you can ride the rail and read the mail
And let the road to winding (Chorus)

The engines are built into the cars
So the fireman doesn't go very far
Three cars strong just pulling along
To fetch himself some tea
The passengers are all together
On holiday or running from the weather
Looking through the windows at the provincial scenery

Previous Songs: Rainfall Has Turned to Snow * I Like It Here/O Cold and Misery * Winter on the Farm * Darling * Fine Old Lady * The Teton Dam * Towboat * Ozawindib * The Hinkley Fire * Fall Is Here * L'Etoile Du Nord * Goodnight Baby * Gypsy Woody

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Photo: Marjorie Guthrie Collection, Woodie Guthrie Publications, Inc.