Tracks in Berlin, MA??

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Postby ewh » Sat Jun 18, 2005 3:47 pm

Look at this and tell me what you think:

http://historical.maptech.com/getImage. ... g&state=MA

It appears that the Central Mass went south around Rattlesnake Hill and then into the reservoir. The area west of Rattlesnake Hill is owned by the MDC today and is probably off limits.
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Tracks in Berlin, MA??

Postby trainsinmaine » Sat Jun 18, 2005 9:33 pm

Thanks for the topo map references. The ROW is hard to locate on the 20th-century ones, but I finally found it on the old 15-degree Marlborough map from 1898. You're right --- the railroad veered around the south side of Rattlesnake Hill, crossed what is now Larkin Road at a 90-degree angle, then headed westward toward Boylston Station (now under water, I presume). Larkin Road makes sharp curves both north and south of the intersection with the CM, which leads me to wonder whether there may have been a bridge there --- and that it could be the bridge I've been thinking about.

You said that the area west of Rattlesnake Hill is off limits; does "off limits" mean no foot traffic? Much of the Quabbin watershed is off limits, too, but one can walk it.

Is Larkin Road open? I don't know anything about it.
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Postby ewh » Sun Jun 19, 2005 11:04 am

First, the Central Mass track is still in place up to the unnamed road just west of BM 308 on the cited topo map. The B&M served a lumber dealer at what was the Berlin Station until the late 1970's. I remember seeing 2 boxcars there in 1978. The switch faced east, so the train had to approach the end of track and then back into the siding. There was an overpass that crossed this road until 1958, but not only is the bridge gone, so are the abutments. I have no idea what it looked like. This might have been what you remember. It is about a quarter mile east of the B&M/NH crossing.

I don't know what the access is like post 9/11 at Wachusett. I grew up in Southboro across from the Sudbury Reservoir and most kids simply avoided the MDC. We had a boat and rafts in the reservoir and went swimming. Wachusett's HQ is on the same road as the high school and I guess you could ask nicely. I believe that neither Wachusett nor Sudbury are active reservoirs, but just way stations from Quabbin, so you can't hurt much.
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