• A Saratoga Springs trolley line?

  • General discussion about fallen trolley and interurban lines in North America, past and present.
General discussion about fallen trolley and interurban lines in North America, past and present.

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by RussNelson
 
This is the route of a trolley line.
http://rutlandtrail.org/gmap.cgi?sarato ... y.ny.track
It's drawn as going to Saratoga Lake with no branches here:
http://rutlandtrail.org/mapview.cgi?lat ... 4&height=3
and yet when you look at the modern topographic and aerial photos, it seems to follow a different route. The topographic map doesn't label it as a railroad, but it so closely follows here
http://rutlandtrail.org/mapview.cgi?lat ... 4&height=3
that I have to assume that they could see something. And indeed, when you look at the aerial photos:
http://rutlandtrail.org/mapview.cgi?lat ... 4&height=3
it surely looks like the trolley line had a switch west of Lake Lonely.

BTW, I looked today for the trolley line east of I-87 and found it! I also found some blackberry bushes and stinging nettle, so my legs don't look so good right now. In addition to two sets of fences lining the ROW, I also found a fallen catenary pole.

Also found it crossing a creek very close to what the topo map labels 9P.

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Ron

The Interurban map you are showing is really 2 maps in one. The original branch to Saratoga lake is the upper most (or northern most) one. The second or southern most one is the second route. The Uppermost (Northern ) one was the original one and terminated very close to RT 9P near what is now a abandoned Eatery (now owned by the local rowing club). The Southern most crossed the south in of Lake Lonely and terminated at the Kaydaross Pavillion. When the southern most was completed. They abandoned the Northern track. There are still parts of both right of way which can still be seen. There is a book out on the Hudson Valley Interurban that I do believe shows the track schematics of the extension to Saratoga Lake. I think there is a copy in the Saratoga City Librarary>

  by RussNelson
 
Thanks! I knew something like that was going on. Do you see any changes that I should make to this routing?
http://rutlandtrail.org/gmap.cgi?sarato ... y.ny.track

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

Your map is pretty close. The Golf Course (Saratoga National) has wiped out much of the old ROW. The point at which the old line and new line intersected (Northern& Southern) appear to be outside the Golf Course . This is not visable from any road. One may get to that point without tresspassing on the Golf Course. Some day I might try to get in there. The only other suggestion I could add is that on the Saratoga side of the Northway. The book by Dave Nestle (A History of the Hudson Valley Railway) shows the old ROW on Adams Ave. Going south to a point it crossed Crecent ave just north of Eddy corners and began its trek east . This is a little different than your map is showing. All in All pretty close.

What can you tell me about the Paul Smith Electric line. I see you are in that neck of the woods so to speak?. I have some interest in the junction where it met the NYC. My E-mail is [email protected].

Thanks

Dave

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

I stand corrected. I should of said Neilson Ave instead of Crecent ave in my last post.

  by RussNelson
 
SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN wrote:What can you tell me about the Paul Smith Electric line. I see you are in that neck of the woods so to speak?. I have some interest in the junction where it met the NYC.
Oh, well, you can't beat Michael Kudish's Railroads of the Adirondacks, or his new Where Did the Tracks Go in the Central Adiorondacks, which is Volume 2 of Mountain Railroads of New York State. Since he taught at Paul Smiths, he had plenty of opportunity to explore that line.

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

Yes Michael Kudish. I have the first edition (1996) Purple Mountain Press. The area I am interested in is what they called Lake Clear Junction. This was the end point (If you got on the train atPaul Smiths). This was a very busy place in its day. I was up around Malone chaseing the remnants of the Rutland about a year ago. I ended up dropping down into Potsdam (to visit my nephew who goes to Clarkson). Anyway I decided I would return to the Saratoga region via Saranac and Lake Placid . I remember passing the entrance to Paul Smiths. It dawned on me that Lake Clear junction was fairly close. However I could not find anything . (I wonder if anything is left from the old days. It was getting dark so I was kind of pressed for time. I intend to go back up there this spring and look around. By the way Kudish!s book is a wealth og information. Track schemes of everything and anything that was in Northern New York.

  by RussNelson
 
SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN wrote:Russ

Your map is pretty close. The Golf Course (Saratoga National) has wiped out much of the old ROW. The point at which the old line and new line intersected (Northern& Southern) appear to be outside the Golf Course . This is not visable from any road. One may get to that point without tresspassing on the Golf Course. Some day I might try to get in there.
Oh! But if you go to where the old line gets to the highway, you'll find a parking area and sign saying that the road through the golf course is part of a nature trail, and you're allowed to walk on it. Best part is that as far as I can tell, the road is built on the old roadbed.
The only other suggestion I could add is that on the Saratoga side of the Northway. The book by Dave Nestle (A History of the Hudson Valley Railway) shows the old ROW on Adams Ave. Going south to a point it crossed Crecent ave just north of Eddy corners and began its trek east . This is a little different than your map is showing. All in All pretty close.
How about now? I've got Dave Nestle's book on order, so you might want to wait for me to get it. :-)

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

I live about 2 miles from 9P area you are talking about. The old ROW goes up the hill to the back of Longfellows Restaurant.(I think thats the area you were in ) There is a nature trail I know of that goes over to Lake Lonely. I think they have an observation deck of some kind in there. (overlooking the lake) The ice fishermen also park along there. (short walk to the lake). The point or junction I am talking about is between the western edge of the golf course and the Northway. I looked on your map and it seemed on the edge of the golf course and about in the middle of the golf course property.(on the western edge) When I say junction I mean the point at which the old north branch stopped and the southern one began. You probably saw that MANSION just west of the entrance to the Golf Course. (looks like the mansion they called Soth Fork in Texas. Just west on 9p is a ridge line which I do believe runs North and South adjacent to the Northway. I think I would walk in that way and avoid the Golf course and swamps which abound in that area. If I walked due south along that ridge. (on 9P) for about a mile. I should walk right over the old ROW. Maybe next weekend I will give it a shot. I am glad you are ordering Dave Nestles book. (He is now deceased). He was the resident expert around here on Interurbans and Railroads in General. A finer man never lived. He wrote numerous books on Capital district Railroads and Interurbans. He was a very highly respected individual. Are you from the Potsdam area?. You seem well versed in area History around here.

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

I missed your last reply before I answered. There very well be a nature trail running through the whole golf course. I have only been inside the gates a few times. I just never saw the sign. However I remember when they built the Course. All the roads inside have been changed. The road that leads back to the Clubhouse is new. The pond out front was never there before. The road I remember going in lead to some barns near Lake Lonely. That road (the new one) may be on the old ROW. However if you looked at the old ROW that still exists. It would have had to to make a very sharp turn to line up with the existing road. Still possible though and very good food for thought. This Golf course is the Ritz. I am not a golfer but most of my friends are. They say the restaurant in the Clubhouse top of the line. Very expensive to play there. Needless to say in August they get a kings ransom.

  by RussNelson
 
Well, look at the old topo map, here:
http://rutlandtrail.org/gmap.cgi?theme= ... g=-73.7738
and compare it to the gold course road. They're kinda-sorta in the same place, but those old maps, they were only ever kinda-sorta anyway. Drawn with great precision but not as much accuracy.

Here's the location of the nature trail parking lot. I don't remember exactly what the sign there said, but it *definitely* gives permission for some sort of use of the golf course for walking.
http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=43.06531,-73 ... rings%20NY
If you scroll out and to the west, I've marked a linear feature that I think is the old trolley bed. It points to both the golf course road to the east and to the putative location of the trolley line to the west. Pings my ferro-equinologist-radar.

Plus the nature trail parking lot gives you access to the trolley bed going SE to Lonely Lake.

I'll be swinging through the area April 13th, heading back to Potsdam. If the weather is good, and you haven't gone exploring on your own, maybe we can go poking around?

  by SARATOGA LAKE RAILFAN
 
Russ

I did a little hikeing today. The junction or Southern loop of the Saratoga Lake Trolley is where you projected it to be. I followed the line (ROW) from a point near the edge of the Golf course to a point about twenty yards from the Northbound lane of the Northway. The ROW is pretty intact and I also found a few ties along the way. However I still cannot find anything to indicate the old Northern loops locale. I even spent a few hours in the Saratoga Library looking at old maps. I also took a look at the enviromental study they did on the property before they actually started to build the golf course. . They mentioned an old trolley bed in the northern sector of the property but it was real vague as to exactly where. They could of been talking about the ROW you can see from 9P. I have one more card to play. The County offices in Ballston Spa have maps of that area and property. (when the trolley was operating). I shall return.

Dave