Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby Chessie GM50 » Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:55 am

pierrerabbit wrote:Chessie - No. This is across the river from neshanic (the white bridge). If you look at Google Maps, type in "Neshanic Station NJ", it will pinpoint the intersection of Elm, Mill Ln, and River Rd. Follow Mill Lane travelling East, and the map even shows where the tracks cross. There is an awesome photo oportunity of an NS freight travelling over the tunnel.


I'll see how far I can walk today. It would be nice to get out there myself, not to mention, use some new glass...
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby pierrerabbit » Sun Dec 07, 2008 11:15 am

My son and I plan on going down there soon. :-D
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby Kaback9 » Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:13 pm

Chessie GM50 wrote:
pierrerabbit wrote:Chessie - No. This is across the river from neshanic (the white bridge). If you look at Google Maps, type in "Neshanic Station NJ", it will pinpoint the intersection of Elm, Mill Ln, and River Rd. Follow Mill Lane travelling East, and the map even shows where the tracks cross. There is an awesome photo oportunity of an NS freight travelling over the tunnel.


I'll see how far I can walk today. It would be nice to get out there myself, not to mention, use some new glass...


Good luck with the winds out there!
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby pierrerabbit » Sun Dec 07, 2008 4:31 pm

Windy? Yeah. Went to the tunnel today, here's some shots. Sorry, my timing was off, no NS trains going over the tunnel.
1. Eastbound shot of the ROW. Mother Nature has reclaimed it:
Image
2. Westbound view:
Image
3. Eastbound view:
Image
If you visit, wear boots. The ROW has become a creek.
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby Kaback9 » Sun Dec 07, 2008 4:51 pm

Wow nice shots I told ya it was windy!
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby Chessie GM50 » Sun Dec 07, 2008 5:27 pm

pierrerabbit wrote:Windy? Yeah. Went to the tunnel today, here's some shots. Sorry, my timing was off, no NS trains going over the tunnel.
1. Eastbound shot of the ROW. Mother Nature has reclaimed it:
Image
2. Westbound view:
Image
3. Eastbound view:
Image
If you visit, wear boots. The ROW has become a creek.


Hmm, when were you there? If I went this afternoon, I'd have seen you... just a bit too windy for me.
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby pierrerabbit » Sun Dec 07, 2008 7:07 pm

We were there around 10-11 AM, dressed in many layers. If you go, it is somewhat rough back there, mud, sticker bushes, downed trees, lots of water, like I mentioned, the ROW has become a creek. One of the fascinating things we found was that some of the cut stones used for the walls were engraved with letters. Were theses the initials of the stone cutters?
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby blownb310 » Sun Nov 26, 2017 10:16 am

pierrerabbit wrote:Not sure of the exact dates, but there were occasional freights on the branch into the 70's. My guess is the tracks between Somerville and Three Bridges were torn up around '75-'76.
I moved into Neshanic Station in '79. The tracks were fully in place [albeit somewhat overgrown] from Three Bridges, past the Neshanic RR station, and over the bridge crossing the South Branch of the Raritan River well into 1980. I was 16 at the time and trying to build a track speeder to ride the route. I never finished it. I then got my driver's license and bought an old Pontiac to restore instead. :)
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby carajul » Mon Jan 22, 2018 3:02 pm

The fed gov't agency regulating RRs at the time forced abandonment of the branch in 1974 from Somerville to Flemington because the tracks were so bad and the only customer left was getting tank cars filled with chemicals. From that point on, the tanks came up from the other end from the BelDel.

The row thru the Duke estate has been obliterated and a paved road called "railroad street" built on top of it. I guess the Duke family bought the row when the CNJ was in bk.

I can't imagine the shape of the bridge in the later years. Rumor is that the CNJ crews would put the loco in notch 1 and walk along side their train, fearing the bridge would collapse.

I think Neshanic Station is just what locals call the area around the old train station. The name of the town is actually Branchberg.
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby SemperFidelis » Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:39 pm

Still a supporting pier for the railroad bridge along the ROW to the south of Somerville.
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Re: Abandoned tracks in Hillsborough, NJ

Postby ShoreRoad » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:11 pm

The old ROW from Neshanic through to Somerville has a number of different owners. Somerset County and the towns were (are?) trying to acquire a greenway from Somerville to the county park at Woodfern. They have bits and pieces in place but have not been able to complete it:

- Black River & Western owns from Riverside to points west.
- Public vehicle ROW along Woodfern Road to Main Street in Neshanic owned by Township of Branchburg
- Private owner from Main Street to abandoned bridge
- County owns half of bridge and base of bridge across the river in Hillsborough
- Private owner from River Road across old ROW to Mill Lane/Riverside Drive (Hillsborough tried and failed to acquire this parcel a few years ago)
- Somerset County owns from Riverside Drive to the woods between the Drive and Conrail
- Private owners from that area to Beekman Lane near Flagtown
- PSE&G from Beekman Lane to Roycefield Road in Hillsborough
- Duke Farms Foundation from Roycefield Road through Duke Farms to 206
- Borough of Somerville and NJTransit to Somerville Rail Station
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