This blog highlights some of my adventures with the focus on railroad history. Originally intended as a blog of my rail trail rides, it now also includes hikes, railroad trips and even stop-and-go car trips if they are railroad history related...

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Progress on the Maybrook Trailway

While up in Lake Carmel, NY working on a recording project, I drove over toward Patterson to check out the countryside, Being a bit of a railroad hound I sniffed out construction on the old Maybrook line and discovered it is being made into a combo of both rail and trail! Details on the project in the Further Info section at the bottom of this post.

 (Click pics to enlarge)


Formally owned by the  Central New England Railway, the Maybrook Line was assimilated into  New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad in 1927 to connect its Waterbury Branch in Derby, Connecticut to its Maybrook Yard in Maybrook, New York, where it interchanged with other carriers. It was the main east-west freight route of the New Haven until its merger with the Penn Central in 1969.  Metro-North acquired the line, which runs from Danbury, Connecticut, to Beacon, NY in 1994 for $4.2 million.

The historical topo map below illustrates the Maybrook Line on the left. At this point in time it was owned by the Central New England Railway.  The former New York and Harlem line is on the right.

Current Status

1- Route 311 overpass

I drove over to Patterson and got lucky! - A MetroNorth train pulled into the station.
Patterson, NY
A couple of Google Street Views to illustrate the progress...
2- Google Street View .>
3- Google Street View >

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Schenectady's Past - Railroad Tributes

On August 28th, 2019, while visiting my mother, I decided to do a bit of local railroad history sleuthing rather than mountain bike. It was productive!


Now recently renovated as a restaurant, this building was originally a single-story waiting room for the Schenectady Railway Company - a local trolley company.

Next - although I am no fan of casinos, the Rivers Casino and Resort rose from the ashes of the former ALCO plant and I was curious if there was any mention of the history of the location.
this spot is called the Amphitheater
there are picnic tables and a green lawn (no trees tho'...)
the walk along the rivers edge was pleasant
 Sure enough... I was rewarded with a series of nicely done signage scattered around the park area!

For lunch I headed up to Ballston Spa and had a tasty burger and brew outside, at the old Chocolate Factory. On my trek back in December 2015,  I documented the local electric railway and the interesting history of this mill complex.

Although it was cloudy and gray all morning, the sun came out during lunch and I felt a wee bit guilty for not biking but nevertheless, it was an interesting and productive trek!

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Railroad History Snapshots (VT and NY) - 8-27-19

On my way from Stowe, VT to Scotia, NY--I decided to head to Poultney, VT and ride a bit of the Rail Trail there.


On the way,  I stopped at Bristol for a coffee and a Danish. Its a nice town and I had done a study on its railroad history a few years back. [Thursday, September 3, 2015 - Bristol Railroad]

Poultney, VT

I was in the mood for something easier today and thought a ride along the river and a bit of railroad history would be fun. Sadly the trail was really boring and there very almost no river views.
 I started my ride from the former station
The two photos above were taken the year before
The Ride...
Riding on the old D&H ROW was fun...
...however most of the trail is just a mowed cut thru fields
At this kiosk, there was a short spur... the river
Pricklers in the field left their mark on me!
but finally the loop brings you back to the RR ROW
Heading to the station once again

Slate Valley

Last August I rode the D&H Rail Trail from Granville to West Pawlet. This area was known as Slate Valley and there's a proliferation of slate quarries all around...
Google Aerial View > 
Google Aerial View > 

Salem, NY

Once in Salem,  a stop to the old railroad station was of course a must!
A peak thru the window
It once was a major railroad hub !
(from kiosk across the street)

Salem, NY - Further Railroad Info

Cambridge, NY

Ages ago, our family had a get together here and stayed in the Victorian Hotel. I knew the hotel had fallen on hard times and closed and it was wonderful to see it reborn as an assisted living center!
The train area has been totally revitalized as well. The Argyle Brewing Co. has turned the passenger depot into a tasting room and the freight building complex is now all renovated as part of Hubbard Hall.  What they've done is fantastic!
This is the Map from their site

Close up of the hearth/furnace? in the photo above

Across the street may hopefully get renovated as well someday... :-)

Sadly, I had planned on visiting Hoosick Falls as well but due to an unbelievable amount of long waits in traffic because of one-lane-only construction delays, I had to forgo that visit... :-(