Silver Lake Railroad

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Silver Lake Railroad

Postby b&m 1566 » Fri Sep 29, 2006 10:56 pm

On Monday the 25th me and my girlfriend stopped by the Madison Station in Madison, NH on are way to North Conway to check the place out; and too are surprise we saw a little engine sitting at the end of the track near the road with a car connected to it. It was more or less a speeder built to look like a little engine and the car had park benches with a Canobie over them. This was not the only set like this and in fact there were about 2 or 3 other train sets just like it sitting at the station or out near the freight house. After walking around the place for a little bit I was able to speak to a lady who works inside the station. The lady who is an employee of the Post Office which utilizes half of the station told us that the owner of the station and the surrounding land is in the process of starting up a little railroad. He has been given permission by the NHDOT to utilize 5 miles of the Conway Branch starting at the Madison Depot and going north to I believe Bolder Rd.??? The railroad has been up and running for two years now but more so to clear the track and fix any rail that has been disconnected. Though no official date has been set, the railroad has opened up to the public for a few rides during Madison’s Old Home Day, 4th of July and what not. Right now they've been working on a bridge that has halted the grand opening but hope to have it fixed in time to start operating weekend services next summer.
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Postby NHN503 » Thu Nov 02, 2006 7:01 pm

The Silver Lakes RR is a work in progress by a fellow member of the Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club I believe. The one locomotive that they have is an actual engine and not a speeder that is modified. They also have a large ex-METRA gang car there that is very interesting. I was up there last week and things are going well for them and moving along.

We are trying to get permission from NHDOT to extend our line to include all the trackage to Conway. Talks with the Coleman contractor that is blocking the track in Conway have gone well and he has agreed to move his equipment of the ROW.
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Postby b&m 1566 » Thu Nov 02, 2006 7:20 pm

That sounds great!!! :-D The run to Conway: is that to the town line or right up to the CSRR operational tracks? I thought there was a mile or two of track missing between Madison and Conway or is that miss understood information?
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Postby NHN503 » Fri Nov 03, 2006 5:57 pm

b&m 1566 wrote:That sounds great!!! :-D The run to Conway: is that to the town line or right up to the CSRR operational tracks? I thought there was a mile or two of track missing between Madison and Conway or is that miss understood information?


Right up to CSRR trackage rights. The only section of track missing is 1/10 of a mile in Ossipee under Rt 28. Everything else is there....even if it is under gravel like in Madison and by the Woodchip energy plant by Rt 43 in Ossipee.
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Postby CSRR573 » Sun Nov 05, 2006 2:14 pm

Doesn't the CSRR own the tracks roght to the Conway/Albant town line? If so would the RR operate to the town line or to the frieght house at Conway?
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Postby NHN503 » Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:57 am

CSRR573 wrote:Doesn't the CSRR own the tracks roght to the Conway/Albant town line? If so would the RR operate to the town line or to the frieght house at Conway?


To the Albany town line only.
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Postby B&Mguy » Sat Feb 17, 2007 5:56 pm

To get back on topic; is the SLRR going to be a tourist railroad, or is it basically just going to be tracks maintained for speeders? In either case, it would make sense to renovate the entire length of the Conway branch, as well as restore that connection for the Wolfboro branch.

Also, wasn't the Wolfboro RR shut down in the mid 1980's because it could not compete with the much more successfull CSRR? Wouldn't the SLRR potentially have this same problem?

It seems like someday in the future, North Conway will once again have a rail connection to Boston...
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Postby b&m 1566 » Sat Feb 17, 2007 6:47 pm

This will not be a regular railroad like that of the Wolfeboro Scenic or the Conway Scenic. It will be using equipment a little bit bigger than speeders with cars hooked up to them. The cars have canopies over them that looked like they were purchased from Wal-Mart or something with park benches for seats; the cars looked like they could accommodate about 20 people. Because Madison is not much of a tourist destination like that of Conway and N. Conway to the north and Lake Winnipesaukee to the south the railroad will only be operating on weekends during the summer months and on special holidays like that of Memorial Day, Forth of July, Madison's Old Home Day, Labor Day and maybe even Columbus Day if they run foliage trains. This railroad has already done some runs for the residents of Madison during Forth of July and Madison’s Old Home Day but that's it. All trains will be running north of Madison Station (aka. Silver Lake Depot) because the rail was removed from the road at the south end of the station platform; its to bad… because you have Silver Lake on the other side of that road which the tracks run a long for about a ½ mile or so. Who knows maybe they’ll come up with some money to put the tracks back or have another train set on that side of the road for a scenic ride along the lake possibly going all the way to West Ossipee Station (aka. Mount. Whitter Station).
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Postby GP40MC 1116 » Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:49 am

Someone needs to get some pictures of these things :-D
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Postby NHN503 » Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:49 am

I don't know how much further they can go as they have yet to even seek permission to use the line, at least that is was NH DOT was stating a few weeks ago.

I hope they can get it up an running as it would be a nice addition to the area, and would help to keep the line open. Also as an additional place to ride our speeders if they would allow! :P
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Postby musehobo » Sun Feb 18, 2007 12:41 pm

Last year I talked to one of the men working with the owner. From what I understand the ride is free but you have to sign a waiver. The NH DOT is really the one holding things up.
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Postby NHN503 » Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:06 pm

musehobo wrote:Last year I talked to one of the men working with the owner. From what I understand the ride is free but you have to sign a waiver. The NH DOT is really the one holding things up.


How can NH DOT be holding it up? According to NH DOT Bureau of Rails, no one from SLRR has applied for permission to utilize that section of the line, only expressed interest in possibly running on it. Thus no operating agreement has been issued.

As long you have your paperwork, idea, and possible insurance in order, NH DOT is easy to work with.
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Postby b&m 1566 » Sun Feb 18, 2007 2:31 pm

I'm not sure if this means much but the New Hampshire Railroad Revitalization Association reports the Silver Lake Railroad will be up and running. Maybe something as been worked out with the state; I can't see the association reporting such information, if it wasn't Okayed by the state. I would assume insurance would be the big factor here? Click on the link http://www.nhrra.org/minutes/200701.doc it’s the 2nd to last paragraph at the bottom of the page that tells about the Silver Lake Railroad.
Still no website for this tiny little railroad, or... I just can't find it.
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Postby NHN503 » Mon Feb 19, 2007 2:58 am

b&m 1566 wrote:I'm not sure if this means much but the New Hampshire Railroad Revitalization Association reports the Silver Lake Railroad will be up and running. Maybe something as been worked out with the state; I can't see the association reporting such information, if it wasn't Okayed by the state. I would assume insurance would be the big factor here? Click on the link http://www.nhrra.org/minutes/200701.doc it’s the 2nd to last paragraph at the bottom of the page that tells about the Silver Lake Railroad.
Still no website for this tiny little railroad, or... I just can't find it.


Humm dunno on that one. The reply we got from NHDOT when we asked about the RR was on Jan 27th.
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Postby NHN503 » Wed Feb 21, 2007 2:09 am

From the NH DOT 2003 Study
Although the State owns the corridor from Route 28 to the Conway/Albany town line, there are
some property issues that would need to be resolved as part of a reconstruction project.
The parcel of former railroad property immediately north of Route 113 in Silver Lake (MP
126.20) to the end of the freight house (MP 126.30) is now privately owned. The Department
would have to purchase this parcel or obtain a railroad easement before the railroad can operate
again. Bureau staff members have contacted the current owner, who is receptive to restoration of
rail service.
The section of rail from approximately MP 131.30 to MP 132.00 is located adjacent to Alvin J.
Coleman & Sons’ property and haul road, and the business operation is using the railroad
property for storing equipment, materials, and vehicles. It has also placed large boulders
between the rails on a portion of the line as a guardrail for trucks using the adjacent haul road.
This area of encroachment is on both sides of Madison Road (Route 113). The encroachment on
the railroad line in this area would need to be resolved before train service can be restored.
Some encroachments also exist on the corridor owned by the Conway Scenic Railroad, north of
the Albany-Conway town line.
9
Otherwise, most of the railroad line is relatively free of encroachments, but some appear to exist
at MP 115.00 (junk car yard) and MP 117.90 (mobile homes and sheds). Another potential
encroachment problem is a church building adjacent to the line in Center Ossipee.
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