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Author Topic: The mighty Narrow East  (Read 13255 times)
ebtbob


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« Reply #15 on: June 18, 2007, 08:34:31 PM »

Good Evening all,


        First of all,  let's talk accomidations at or near the EBT.  True-a new bed and breakfast has opened just adjacent to the railroad property and - surprise,  surprise,  it is already near on impossible to get a room.   Secondly,   Motel 22,  a two star at best - has reopened in the past few months.   I stayed there many a time in the past and it is what it is,  a place to sleep,  bath,  and get to the railroad in about 20 minutes.   The place is just west of Mt. Union or Rte 22 about two to three miles.  I have no idea of cost or what the accomidations are like now,  but I know that I went past it several times over a span of at least six months and there was work being done to the rooms.   Huntingdon is the next closest place with a selection of rooms,  but remember that is a college town and at certain times of the year it is packed.   Also,  it is close enough to Penn State that on football weekends,  well just don't show up trying to find a room.
        The talk of the EBT scenery being spectacular or what - I guess is a matter of opinion.  Remember,  this is the east and we do not get the grand vistas that you get in Colorado.   The EBT has a charm all of its own and if I were King of the World,  and had to open the line one way,  it would be south into the mountains to Robertsdale.   The fact that the railroad goes thru someone's back yard is,  as I understand it,  their problem if the railroad was to open up.   Using that term again,   as I understand it,  there was something about the abandonment that is different for the EBT in comparison with other railroads and so,  that abandonment may not necessarily stop the railroad from taking back some land.   I really am not sure,  and this would be a good queston for Lance Myers at the EBT Yahoo Group.  Aside from the backyard though is the question of the Pogue bridge and the tunnels.    Millions of dollars would be needed just to fix the tunnels,  let alone the bridges etc.
       So,  the EBT is what it is.    A 5 mile line with beautiful little mikes that roll along at a brisk 15 to 20 miles an hour and you can listen to the whistles echo off the surrounding hills.

Bob
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Bob Rule, Jr.
Hatboro, Pa
In God We Trust
Not so much in Congress
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Dusten Barefoot

Determind to get some E.T.&.W.N.C On30 models


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« Reply #16 on: June 18, 2007, 11:41:36 PM »

Tweetsie has lots of great Hotels and Motels just about 5 minuts from the railroad. If you ever get the chance to go to Boone, you will have Tweetsie, Blowing Rock, and Mystery Hill. Does anyone have any info on any were abouts on equipment from the ET&WNC?
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SteamGene

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« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2007, 08:57:57 AM »

Coming from the south, the place to get a room is Downes Motel Number 2 in Ft. Littleton, which is an exit from the Pa Turnpike.  There is a restaurant in the town and a grocery store which also sells subs. 
Downes is also, at best, a two star motel, but clean, with large rooms and no frills.  Downes Motel Number 1 is across the turnpike and looks like it has been closed for at least ten years.  Up the highway towards Orbisonia about five miles there is a building with a "hotel" sign on it, but it looks like it might be the setting of a great horror movie and I think the only operational part of the hotel is the sign.
Gene
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #18 on: June 19, 2007, 08:15:27 PM »

Bob;

Don't be too quick to toss the eastern systems as next to unimportant.  A lot of unusual things were a part of that collection of roads and gauges.  As an example, the Cog Railway at Mt. Washington, is still running, and has the most unusual gearing system I have seen. 

The Boston, Revere Beach and Lynn railroad was unique in three aspects:  it was electrified, it had a Scherzer rolling bridge-on wooden pilings-, and it was elevated!  Oh, By the way...Three of it's passenger cars were de-electrified and sold to-yep; you guessed it...The East Broad Top!

Also, the Maine two-foot system was the smallest railroad listed bu the ICC as a common carrier-which it was, unless you want to scoff pulpwood, slate, and toothpicks! as revenue.  While I never met either Lin Moody or Ellis Atwood, I got to ride on thier trains around the Atwood plantation-that railroad was of course, a collection of two-foot equipment and steamers cheated from the junkmen, that pretty much put "Ellis in Wonderland"...

Not for nothing, but the first railroad in the US-the Granite Railway up in Quincy Mass-was one of those eastern narrow-gauge roads...  There are others-the list can meander on...

I'll grant you, there is nothing quite like the thrill of three-foot in Colorado; but us easterners had our bantam trains too...Ayupp.

"Next stop...Watah-ville!"

Rich

Rich 
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
pdlethbridge
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« Reply #19 on: June 19, 2007, 10:09:41 PM »

The mt Washington trip is spectacular and even has one grade of 37%. The new trackwork is something else as the old switches required about 9 different moves to change. Don't forget to bring a coat. It will get chilly on the hill Grin
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terry2foot

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« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2007, 02:08:14 AM »

Two of the Maine Two Footers (B&SR/B&H, and the Monson) made it into the 1940's, survived the WW2 scrap drive and formed the basis of the collection firstly at Edaville and now at Portland.

There are active Yahoo groups for those interested, and a spinoff group to scratchbuild build On2/On30 stock has just been started. See the posting under the On30 heading for more info,


Terry2foot


   
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ebtbob


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« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2007, 06:28:41 AM »

Rich,

      I feel you totally misunderstood my points.   The original thought was that the Colorado ng roads are way too popular.  I only tried to say why that may be.   I do not belittle any narrow gauge railroad's contributions or popularity in any way,  especially the EBT!!
      Maybe the best thing that can come out of this thread is some education as to the existence either then or now of eastern narrow gauge railroads.   
      As was stated,   many of the roads disappeared from the scene as many as 70 to 80 years ago.   That fact alone is one of the biggest reasons for the lack of knowledge.   How does one find out about them?  Well I think first,  their very existence has to be made known,  somehow and then a person can pursue iniformation.   
      As I think about the original posters premis,  maybe instead of talking just eastern narrow gauge,  maybe the thread should be about narrow gauge railroads in general,   and not necessarily just in the U.S.

Bob

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Bob Rule, Jr.
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In God We Trust
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ebtnut

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« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2007, 01:26:41 PM »

I did this once before, but I'll do it again to pass some info.  It's just a list off the top of my head of eastern narrow gauge lines.

Two-footers
Sandy River & Rangley Lakes and predecessors
Monson
Wiscasset, Waterville and Farmington
Bridgeton and Harrison
Billerica & Bedford

Three-footers
Peach Bottom
Lancaster, Oxford & Southern
East Broad Top
Waynesburg & Washington
Pittsburg & Western
Tionesta Valley
West Virginia Central
Twin Mountain & Potomac
Clover Leaf Route
Ohio River & Western & prececessors
Lawndale
Mann's Creek
Pittsburg & Castle Shannon
Bradford, Bordell & Kinzua
Kendell and Eldred
New Berlin & Winfield

That's the best I can do without being home at having Hilton's book in my lap.  Again, though, the biggest problem is that most of these lines were gone or absorbed early in the century, meaning virtually no one alive today has any memory of them in operation.  Documentation is scarce to non-existent.  As we've noted before, the Colorado roads lasted long enough to generate interest and a following, and you can still go out there today and put your hands on the "original cross".  And I'm not sure how many folks have a big interest in modeling a road that carried milk, chicks and eggs as opposed to the gold and silver ore, minerals, livestock, etc. that characterized the Rocky Mountain lines. 

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Kevin Strong


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« Reply #23 on: June 20, 2007, 02:10:32 PM »

Add the Tuscarora Valley, and the Newport & Sherman's Valley to that list--both located in EBT territory (with the TV at one point contemplating a connection with the EBT.) Both lines on the opposite end of the spectrum from the EBT in terms of equipment and traffic, but very typical of 1900s eastern narrow gauge.

As for the popularity of the Colorado railroads, it doesn't matter what the trains carried--they could have carried bubble gum. It's the scenery through which they carried it. Look at the portions of the D&RGW that are commonly modeled. Notice how the Alamosa - Antonito stretch is rarely on anyone's radar screen? No one wants to model flatlands with sagebrush. But Cumbres Pass? Chama? Durango? Definitely...

I think eastern narrow gauge railroading has its appeal, but it lies more in the charm of the equipment and structures than the--sorry to say--rather generic scenery. I think you'll find that in the model railroads that depict each region. The western lines have a much greater emphasis on scenery, often with floor-to-ceiling rockwork. The eastern railroads tend to be (in my experience) more focused on towns and individual scenes.

I do think, however, that there was far more variation in equipment in the east than in the west, so it's easier to find prototypes that match one's individual tastes. As much as I love the EBT, I find myself equally fascinated with the Tuscarora Valley. It really was the antitheses of the EBT, with minimal equipment and almost totally second-hand locomotives.

Later,

K
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SteamGene

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« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2007, 03:45:54 PM »

Add Smithfield, Sussex and Southampton in southside Virginia.
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
Dusten Barefoot

Determind to get some E.T.&.W.N.C On30 models


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« Reply #25 on: June 20, 2007, 04:36:18 PM »

You forgot one of the most impotrtant ones, the East Tennessee & Western North Carolina Wink.
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I know I pester the hell out of everone over a 4-6-0
E.T.&.W.N.C, TWEETSIE, LINVILLE.
www.tweetsierailroad.com
http://www.johnsonsdepot.com/crumley/tour1.htm
#12 and 10-Wheelers
Black River & Southern
Rock On & Live Strong
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #26 on: June 20, 2007, 06:00:19 PM »

Bob;
I may have misinterpreted context here.  Certainly, I didn't think any less of you or what you had to say.  If nothing else, you have a right to say it here, and I certainly have gleaned much in the past from your words and others. 

The one common thread the demise of  narrow gauge by and large, shared; was that their economical reason for being became no more; or at very least, superfluous by trucks, etc; the latter pretty much negating the claim that the midget boomers could "go anywhere, and do it at a fraction of the cost of their "wide-gauge" bretheren".

In the grand scheme of things, the "romantic notion" we here share about [them], while having charm and passion, hold little more for reason to being.  If one wants to delve into the depths of the history that these stalwart little iron ponies are part of, there is plenty of avenue for that; the availability of narrow gauge stuff being mute testimony to that end.   I regret never really having rode on the "Sandy River"s baby dude car, the "Rangeley",or cracking my head in the cramped quarters of #24, or Forney #10, but that is my misfortune.  I certainly consumed the literature from the likes of Moody, Day, and others, which was in itself enjoyable.

In that the D&S and the C&T are that popular is the result of a lot pf people and resource coming to the table at the same time with the same enthusiasm-I for one, am glad they did-I only wish that there had been more like Atwood here in the east to have done likewise.

In terms of scenic beauty, the EBT travels through some pretty wonderful scenery-and the SR&RL did also-Franklin County, Maine is beautiful any time of year.

My first exposure to the plausibility of narrow gauge modeling came from an article by Dave Frary and Bob Hayden, may years ago, about Strong Depot, in Maine.  UNtil then, I hadn't really given it a thought; although I knew it had existed; I do feel that the information was then and obviously is now, available to those who are so inclined.

RIch
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Rich

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terry2foot

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« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2007, 02:05:07 AM »

Ebtnut

you missed the Kennebec Central in your listing of the Maine Two Footers, Bridgton does not have an "e" in it, and the B&B was in Massachusetts,

Terry2foot
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #28 on: June 21, 2007, 03:48:20 AM »

you missed the Kennebec Central in your listing of the Maine Two Footers, Bridgton does not have an "e" in it, and the B&B was in Massachusetts,

Heavens to George Mansfield...

Rich

(PS:  Did the Billerica and Bedford really count?   Incidentally, for those interested; Billerica is pronounced "Bill-rica".  Gotta be from the No'th Shoah").
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Rich

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scottychaos


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« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2007, 08:01:06 AM »

you missed the Kennebec Central in your listing of the Maine Two Footers, Bridgton does not have an "e" in it, and the B&B was in Massachusetts,

Heavens to George Mansfield...

Rich

(PS:  Did the Billerica and Bedford really count?   Incidentally, for those interested; Billerica is pronounced "Bill-rica".  Gotta be from the No'th Shoah").

of course the B&B "counts"!  Grin
it was a functional, operating railroad..(although for less than a year!)
but still, it operated, so it counts!  Grin

all the equipment from the B&B, locomotives, cars and track, then went to Maine to start the Sandy River Railroad, the first 2-footer in Maine.

so even though the B&B wasnt in Maine, it was certaintly the ancestor to all the other Maine 2-foot railroads.

Scot

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