• Closter northern branch observations...

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey

Moderator: David

  • 112 posts
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  by airman00
 
gravelyfan wrote:Why not go over to Englewood and watch the switching at Supreme - then you will know when they go north.
That's a good idea and I thought about that, except with bergen county traffic, trying to beat the train to demerast/closter and on to Cove will be the hard part, even if they only go 10mph. One thing about the demerast station and even closter area is that it gives great views for pictures and the suchlike.
  by airman00
 
Steve F45 wrote:i was up that way myself today. where is cove? I didn't see any boxcars.
Cove distrubuters siding is right behind the ACE hardware store. If you follow the line to the very end you'll notice it actually ends in New york state. Cove's siding isn't very far at all from the end of the line. Go up Livingston street (I believe that's the name of the street. It's the main road that takes you into new york state and ultimately turns into route 303)

A small side street called Pierron is off of Livingston. Pierron Street is right next to a pet store. If you get to the intersection where the McDonalds is you've gone to far. Although if you made a right it'd take you to the ace hardware store. Anyway follow Pierron down to the tracks and look to your left, and you may or may not see boxcars. I've seen anywhere from 1-6 boxcars there. It's an old siding that looks worn out, and even the large bay doors to bring the shipments in from the boxcars are in bad shape. If you walked the line you would think this was just another abandoned out of service siding from years ago. It looks all plaid out. Only the boxcars are the giveaway to an active customer. It does look almost like it's the ace hardware store that gets service but it's not, Cove is located in that building. Just up from Cove there is another intact siding (with switch and all), but partially covered with small trees and scrub brush it's obviously oos. (but the switch looks in operating condition)
  by pdtrains
 
Sounds like Cove is in the old JA Melnick Millwork building.


I have pix of that place with 40' box cars at every door.
Did the "drop" there with the 1st northern many times.
We would back up to pieron st, get the train moving,
at a few mph, cut the engine off, run ahead and back the engine
into the siding, and let the train roll by. Then, obviously,
the engine would come out of the siding, and we'd be headed
back east (south). I used to throw the switch for the drop,
then get on the caboose as the train rolled by, and set
the hand brake to stop the train when clear of the switch.

This is a lost art anymore. Heaven forbid that anyone ever
bleeds out a car anymore, or even knows how to do it.

Melnick was worked 5 or 6 days a week, back in the heyday,
when wood was still used to build houses. Woodwork in houses
(other than studs and chipboard), has been replaced with plastic
made to look like wood.

The other siding up the way was Agway....the siding was put in
in the 1960's...much later than any of the others on the northern.
I think it was used at least up thru the 1980's.
  by airman00
 
Mr. Pdtrains... maybe you know this as well... I remember then just up from that agway siding, was the remains of other trackage coming off the main. Like possibly a double track section/passing siding or a siding for a business. It appears these tracks were intentionally removed so the "agway" siding could be built? (something like that) Any idea what this was? Now it's just a handful of ties coming off the main, but nothing other than that, even the switch is gone.

And really interesting information you provide thank you very much! :-) By the way, I was trying to figure out (since I'm not in the railroad business, I'm a tree trimmer) if you put the engine on the other end of the train then how did you get the boxcars onto the siding?
  by airman00
 
I tried to catch the elusive Cove movement but failed. I was unable to get up to cove until 11AM and by then they had already been serviced with 2 fresh boxcars. And the blue boxcar I saw yesterday taken away. So either they came up early say like 9am? or came up after servicing supreme oil, say between 10-11am. From what I gather this seems to be the hardest movement to catch.
  by pdtrains
 
airman00 wrote:Mr. Pdtrains... maybe you know this as well... I remember then just up from that agway siding, was the remains of other trackage coming off the main. Like possibly a double track section/passing siding or a siding for a business. It appears these tracks were intentionally removed so the "agway" siding could be built? (something like that) Any idea what this was? Now it's just a handful of ties coming off the main, but nothing other than that, even the switch is gone.

And really interesting information you provide thank you very much! :-) By the way, I was trying to figure out (since I'm not in the railroad business, I'm a tree trimmer) if you put the engine on the other end of the train then how did you get the boxcars onto the siding?
There was never any passing siding around the NY state line. Double track I think extended all the way from
Granton Jct to Sparkill, back in the 1900-1920 period, but I could be wrong. By the late 1930's there was double track up to Tenafly, with 1/2 mile of double track at Closter and Sparkill. It was always operated at double track, with spring switches, up until the late 60's, when the signals were taken out. Any extra track/ties you see up
west of Agway, was an old siding of some sort most likely. As for switching the sidings......we did that 1st, while pointing west, then reversed the train to head back east......
  by granton junction
 
I was up in Northvale on Monday Nov 1 at the grade xing by Cove (Pierron St). There was 1 blue boxcar (Pan Am?) on the sidiing. I did notice that there is a new milepost there also (MP-22)! Interesting. :-D
  by tastysuds
 
Mr. PDtrains... Did you actually work on the line, I was always wondering what happen to a brakeman. I grew up in Closter behind J J Demarest. Most of the guys working were great.. His name was Don. As a kid I used to ride on the train, something that would never happen today.
  by granton junction
 
Today in Closter (Tuesday Dec 14) I noticed that a boxcar was spotted at JJ Demarest! This is the first time that they have rec'd anything by rail in at least a year and a half. There was also a boxcar spotted at Cove in Northvale. The new milepost in Northvale has been pushed over already.
  by airman00
 
Wow that would be great id JJ Demerast started recieving service again. :) That would mean more chances to catch a train in closter.
  by airman00
 
Steve F45 wrote:Did Weyerhauser ever rebuild in Closter after that huge fire they had years ago?
Last that I heard was no, they left. We used to park our trucks nearby and I'd see 6-8 boxcars going there on a regular basis. They always had two engines, one on either end of the train. It was cool to see them coming by so often. Once I caught them coming by after a snowstorm. The tracks hadn't been cleared of snow so the engine was doing it.
  by pdtrains
 
Fire at Weyerhaeuser was VERY suspicious. Developers (scum of the earth, IMO) were trying
to force Weyerhaeuser plant to close down so they could build condo's there. Then, in the midst of all
of this plant suddenly, accidently burns down. I'd bet the mortgage that it was dirty and illegal politics as usual,
in Bergen County.
  by pdtrains
 
tastysuds wrote:Mr. PDtrains... Did you actually work on the line, I was always wondering what happen to a brakeman. I grew up in Closter behind J J Demarest. Most of the guys working were great.. His name was Don. As a kid I used to ride on the train, something that would never happen today.
Don Cypher held the conductor job on the 1st NRR a lot in the 1970's. He must be retired by now....
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