Batten Kill Railroad

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Benjamin Maggi
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Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Benjamin Maggi » Thu Oct 29, 2009 11:45 am

I have seen a couple of pictures online showing some brightly painted RS-3 units. I don't know much about this line, but was hoping to get some pictures of it. Anyone able to point me in the right direction? Are their engines stored outside, or under cover? When is the best time to catch a train?

Thanks.
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Otto Vondrak
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Otto Vondrak » Thu Oct 29, 2009 3:39 pm

Benjamin Maggi wrote:I don't know much about this line, but was hoping to get some pictures of it.
You, and everyone else, Ben.
Anyone able to point me in the right direction?
Yes. From your location, east. :-)
Are their engines stored outside, or under cover?
Both. Kept in the enginehouse in Greenwich whenever possible, though they will often leave a locomotive near where they finish switching work at the end of the day in the warmer months. With frost coming, they'll probably be making the trip back to Greenwich to avoid storage outdoors.
When is the best time to catch a train?
This is a question that has pondered railfans for generations. Some say they have a regular schedule, and have actually claimed sightings. Others dispute the existence of the Batten Kill, and claim it is only legend.

In short, while they try to have regular work days, operation of said railroad depends on many factors:

- Working locomotive

- Has interchange been delivered to the junction at Eagle Bridge?

- Are customers ready to release cars?

- Is the crew available, or are they working on a more pressing project?

Ben, I strongly suggest you join the BKRR Yahoo group. Read some of the posts on that list, you'll start to get a feel for how the operations work. Then I would ask your specific questions. You realize they only run on weekdays, right?

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/BKRR/

See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BKRR

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pablo
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by pablo » Thu Oct 29, 2009 6:34 pm

Once upon a time, we would see the line operating regularly. Posts like these suggest to me that the line's best years are behind it, which is a shame.

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Otto Vondrak
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Otto Vondrak » Thu Oct 29, 2009 9:08 pm

pablo wrote:Once upon a time, we would see the line operating regularly. Posts like these suggest to me that the line's best years are behind it, which is a shame.
The line usually operates twice a week, they switch their customers (Cargill feed, Carovail seed, and the timber transload at Cargill). Sometimes they decide not to run for various reasons- too caught up in track work or whatever. Sometimes they can't get the engine started. Sometimes Pan Am or D&H doesn't show up with cars. It's also a seasonal business too, catering to agriculture. Because they're a small company, they pretty much dictate when they'll operate, and sometimes it's not on a regular schedule. It's also a bit out of the way- so it's not the easiest operation to shoot! Oh, and the WEATHER...
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thebigham
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by thebigham » Fri Oct 30, 2009 10:56 am

Business is very good on the Battenkill.

Just because you don't see pics or read about it, it doesn't mean business is bad.

This webpage has 18 pages of pics of the Battenkill from this year:

http://naphotos.nerail.org/show/?order= ... Battenkill

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Benjamin Maggi
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Benjamin Maggi » Fri Oct 30, 2009 3:03 pm

So... if I wanted to try and catch a train one day (meaning, commit essentially a whole day to tracking their train) where would be the best place to start? The Enginehouse in Greenwich? The D&H interchange?

Also, are there any indicators that would give me a clue as to whether they are going to run a certain day? I thought about calling them the morning of and asking but am not sure if that would work.

Greenwich is only about 30 minutes from my house, but if they only run during the week it might pose a challenge.
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Otto Vondrak » Fri Oct 30, 2009 8:21 pm

Benjamin Maggi wrote:So... if I wanted to try and catch a train one day (meaning, commit essentially a whole day to tracking their train) where would be the best place to start? The Enginehouse in Greenwich? The D&H interchange?
Even though D&H brings interchange, it's still the B&M/Guilford/PanAm line. Your day will begin wherever the engine is at... which could be Greenwich, could be Greenwich Junction, could be Eagle Bridge.
Also, are there any indicators that would give me a clue as to whether they are going to run a certain day?
Yes. Please join the Yahoo group I linked to earlier, good indicators are posted there all the time. The indicators are same that I posted above- customer need, interchange, crew and loco availability, etc.
I thought about calling them the morning of and asking but am not sure if that would work.
You could call the railroad, their number is listed. State who you are, your intentions ("Hi, my name is___, I'm from___, and I'm a railroad photograper..."). If they don't pick up right away, I find if you leave a number they may try to contact you.

Of course, keep in mind while they are a friendly bunch, they are a business, and all the normal rules of decorum apply.

Good hunting!

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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Otto Vondrak » Sat Nov 07, 2009 4:10 pm

Switching out Cargill a couple weeks ago...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ottomatic77/4078876755/

Visiting the enginehouse at Greenwich:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ottomatic77/4078876413
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rb
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by rb » Sun May 23, 2010 10:14 pm

Does anybody know where the log loads that originate on the BKRR end up?

oibu
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by oibu » Tue May 25, 2010 12:33 pm

I believe they are top quality hardwood veneer logs and go to a mill in Wisconsin or thereabouts. Sounds hard to believe but keep in mind much of the country doesn't have much quality hardwood- this is not your run-of-the-mill pulpwood move. There used to be a similar move on the Southern Tier from Deposit, Ny to somewhere in (IIRC) Michigan.

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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by rb » Wed May 26, 2010 4:23 pm

Fascinating. Thanks.

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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by B&M 1227 » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:06 pm

The Batten Kill is currently in the process of installing a second interchange track at Eagle Bridge. Some grading has been done and there's a big pile of ballast and new rail in the parking lot off Rt 67. It's nice to see some more effort put into their infrastructure, even if paid for by the state.
Did we ever hear a music sweeter than the one that thrills, as it floats along the Deerfield, as it echoes o'er the hills.
How we watch that little engine as it stalks across the plain; was there ever music sweeter, was there ever sight completer, than the coming of the train?
-E. A. Fitch

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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by thebigham » Fri Apr 26, 2013 3:02 pm


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Otto Vondrak
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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Otto Vondrak » Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:48 am

B&M 1227 wrote:The Batten Kill is currently in the process of installing a second interchange track at Eagle Bridge. Some grading has been done and there's a big pile of ballast and new rail in the parking lot off Rt 67. It's nice to see some more effort put into their infrastructure, even if paid for by the state.
That's good news! Switching at Eagle Bridge was usually a very tight operation...

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Re: Batten Kill Railroad

Post by Benjamin Maggi » Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:24 am

The pictures show the colorful #605 out. Is that the primary engine they have been using lately?
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