• Adirondack Scenic Railroad (ADIX) Discussion - 2014

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

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  by Steamer
 
Kyle, Thanks for the shots. I downloaded them all. I shared the link with one of the excursion coordinators. He will hopefully forward it to all participants. Why don't you post it here as well? :-D

BR&P, The railroad did not want us to stop at Beaver River. I heard it was because they are now all anti-railroad. It it true they are actually at the fore-front of the movement to remove the rails for a trail? The small village looked like a really nice place to visit, and they all waived at us going by.... TOO BAD. :(

Tree, Please post and/or share your video. I would really like to see it, Thanks!

Steamer
  by traingeek8223
 
All of Beaver River is not against the railroad, it is actually quite the opposite. The Thompson family, which owns the Norridgewock, is though. In fact, Scott Thompson is widely considered to be "patient zero" in the anti-rail movement.
  by BR&P
 
Steamer wrote:BR&P, The railroad did not want us to stop at Beaver River. I heard it was because they are now all anti-railroad. It it true they are actually at the fore-front of the movement to remove the rails for a trail? The small village looked like a really nice place to visit, and they all waived at us going by.... TOO BAD. Steamer
My post was tongue-in-cheek, as I know very well the relationships at work here. The young guy who was the talented family musician entertaining the speeder-operating guests back then is the leader of the remove-the-track movement.

It IS too bad, because in all seriousness the place has a lot to offer and absent one or two anti-rail folks, I'm sure some mutually rewarding activities could be set up. They used to offer fantastic meals, they had quite a few cabins they rented for the overnight stay, and I enjoyed many an adult beverage at the lodge. Since some of the cabins were a fair way from the lodge they even had a couple "beater" autos you could use to get back and forth, no charge. And the scenery was wonderful. IMHO the guy is shooting himself (and the town) in the foot because it COULD be a great destination.
  by Matt Langworthy
 
BR&P wrote:It IS too bad, because in all seriousness the place has a lot to offer and absent one or two anti-rail folks, I'm sure some mutually rewarding activities could be set up. They used to offer fantastic meals, they had quite a few cabins they rented for the overnight stay, and I enjoyed many an adult beverage at the lodge. Since some of the cabins were a fair way from the lodge they even had a couple "beater" autos you could use to get back and forth, no charge. And the scenery was wonderful. IMHO the guy is shooting himself (and the town) in the foot because it COULD be a great destination.
That sounds (reads?) like alot of fun. I wonder why he turned against the RR?
  by RussNelson
 
Matt Langworthy wrote:I wonder why he turned against the RR?
Scotty got caught transporting fuel on his Hy-Rail. Apparently that's a big no-no (who knew?) Anyway there is now a gate at the south end of Beaver River which says "NO ATVS". It was open when we went through, but it's quite possible that the gate is usually closed. There's also a big sign on both sides of the tracks at Big Moose Station talking about not trespassing with motor vehicles and not transporting fuel. I called them the "Scotty Thompson Memorial signs".
  by RussNelson
 
Still working on my pictures and video, but here's a teaser: https://plus.google.com/102355438470080 ... dfMdXVBZaV" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I want to be very clear here, to dispel any misinformation that anybody may have gotten. The tracks are in excellent condition, all the way from Snow Junction to the EOT in Lake Placid. There are a few tiny washouts where a couple of inches of the ties are cantilevered, all of which could be dealt with in a couple of days with a pair of side-dump cars. There are a lot of bad ties, as could be expected. They've done some very recent work replacing ties south of Big Moose Station.

The rails are very smooth. We only hit one really bad rail joint, which is marked with pink tape (the significance of which we didn't realize on the outbound trip WHAM). Everybody was very friendly, took pictures, and waved. Even the people in Beaver River. Saw about six ARTA signs along the tracks there. That was the only place I saw such signs, so I expect it's pressure from Scotty Thompson.
  by Matt Langworthy
 
RussNelson wrote:
Matt Langworthy wrote:I wonder why he turned against the RR?
Scotty got caught transporting fuel on his Hy-Rail. Apparently that's a big no-no (who knew?) Anyway there is now a gate at the south end of Beaver River which says "NO ATVS". It was open when we went through, but it's quite possible that the gate is usually closed. There's also a big sign on both sides of the tracks at Big Moose Station talking about not trespassing with motor vehicles and not transporting fuel. I called them the "Scotty Thompson Memorial signs".
Oh yeah, I seem to recall that now. I wonder how he would feel if the tracks were removed and a trail was set-up that barred ATVs. Again, I'll warn the ARTA folks to be careful what they wish for.
  by tree68
 
Matt Langworthy wrote:Again, I'll warn the ARTA folks to be careful what they wish for.
Alas - I'll opine that getting everybody out of the woods is exactly what ARTA is looking for (Except for Scott, who wants that road really bad). Of course, they can't say so publicly, as they'd lose the support of the snowmobilers and all the other potential trail users.
  by BR&P
 
Interesting video, Tree. And what a far cry from the old "outlaw" days when the line was dormant. No hirail escorts, no safety vests, no safety inspection of the speeders. Just unload at Big Moose or Van Aukens, call Beaver River to see if the line was clear, and highball. That would be Thursday night. Friday and Saturday would be one day north and one day south, returning to BR each night. Sunday was homeward bound. Probably fewer speeders than in that video but a decent number regardless.

The lodge would supply box lunches each day, breakfast and dinner at the lodge, and you could carry a bar tab as well. For that matter, back then Rule G had been abandoned along with the railroad. One trip north included stops at the Grand Union at Tupper Lake, The Handlebar at Lake Placid, Charlie's at Lake Clear Jct, and possibly a few other establishments which were obscured from memory. Imagine an open speeder (no cab), single cylinder balls to the wall making about 30 MPH, three occupants who had enthusiastically contributed to the revenues of the above establishments...and a damn deer runs across the track about 20 feet in front of the speeder!

It's a wonder, and very fortunate, that nobody was hurt or killed on those ventures, and I know the structure and organization is the way to go for those still enjoying speeders. But in some ways, they will never capture the "good old days" that line used to see.
  by Steamer
 
Hank here, the operator of the "picnic table" with Russ.

Tree68 - Thank you for uploading your video to Youtube, it was fun to watch!

BR&P - I take it you were one of the jigger owner/operators on the line back in the "good ole' days". Do you have any pictures and or videos you can post of your jigger / shingle / homemade contraption and /or it's travels? It would be awesome to "re-live" that time at least through pictures etc. I still want to find a "legal" way to stay over at Beaver River someday, weather Scott lives there or not. I guess his lodge is not the only lodge in town. I see there is also a Beaver River Lodge. I am assuming he is not connected with that one.

Steamer
  by BR&P
 
Steamer, nothing home brew about the equipment. Several Fairmont M-19's, an A-4, a Northwestern originally U S Army, a Fairbanks Morse 2-cylinder, can't really remember what else. Somewhere in all my stuff I do have some slides, and some 8 mm movies as well. I'd have to find the slides first, and get them to a friend who has a scanner.
  by Steamer
 
How do you use all those speeders now? Are you also in NARCOA? Was you on the ASRR run as well?

BTW: I am going to Cooperstown to participate in thier Railfan Day on Saturday. You, Russ, Tree68 and anyone else you reads this are all invited to come on down and take a ride on my speeder. I plan on giving rides if allowed.

Here is the link to the Flyer: http://www.lrhs.com/wp-content/uploads/ ... er-v.2.pdf

Hank
  by BR&P
 
Oh, those were not all mine - it was a whole group who used to go up a couple times a year. Maybe 30 people or so, perhaps 10 - 15 speeders, it varied from time to time. I have not been involved with anything like that for years. Thank you for the invite but I will not make it.

I think I know where those slides are, when I get time I'll take a look and maybe it will jog my memory on more details. I do recall Henry Pape had a big flatbed Ford ("Goliath") which used to haul several of the speeders up there, other people had small trailers or even wooden rails and ramps to carry one on the back of a pickup truck.

A humorous incident happened on the first trip up there. As I heard it, about a half dozen speeders made their way from Big Moose to Beaver River in the mid 1970's. The line was out of service, Penn Central had stopped operations several years before, and assurances had been received from the Thompsons that the rails were clear to travel. The string of speeders putt-putted into town, stopped in front of the lodge, and the people were starting to wander toward the Inn. Suddenly there was a commotion, and they turned to see a little old man yelling and waving his arms, very upset. Some of the guys went to see what he wanted, and as they got closer they heard a heavy Italian accent yelling "No block-a da main! You put-ta in siding! No block-a da main!"

The guy had been an old NYC section man, and had been taught the proper way since the day he hired out. He may have been retired, and the trains may not have run for years, but never the less, you don't block-a da main! The speeder folks dutifully backed clear of the switch, pulled into the passing track, restored the switch for the main, and all was well! From that trip forward, the machines always spent the night in the siding, not on the main. :-D
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