As you've probably figured, October is one of my favorite months. And New England is - IMO - one of the best places on the planet to enjoy it. Fortunately for me, some of the best places are within easy reach. The only downside is that if I'm out and about, I'm not in the basement working on the layout. But no matter how hardcore a model railroader you may be, it's hard to be in the basement on a bright, sunny, fall day. So these past couple of weekends, layout work has taken a back seat while I get outside for some brisk autumn air. Here are a few shots from my recent trips...
|Stafford Springs, CT on the former Central Vermont Rwy (now New England Central)|
|Palmer, MA station on the former Boston & Albany (where the Central Vermont crosses). The station has been restored to a must-see/must-eat-at restaurant called The Steaming Tender.|
|The "blue cabooses" in Deerfield, MA, along the B&M's Connecticut River Line. Visiting these is an annual event for me and the Missus (I get this same shot every year going back close to 20 yrs now).|
|East Deerfield Yard on the old Boston & Maine, now PanAm/Norfolk Southern. Some pretty cool power laying over.|
|East Deerfield Yard from the "Railfan Bridge"|
|Former New Haven Railroad freighthouse in Shelburne Falls, MA - now the site of the Shelburne Falls & Colrain trolley museum.|
|#10 originally ran on the SF&C and has been beautifully restored and is fully operational.|
|Hoosac Tunnel, MA on the former Fitchburg RR/Boston & Maine. I haven't visited here in probably close to 20 years, so I'd forgotten how impressive it is. This is the east portal and very accessible (unlike the western portal). Used to be double-tracked, and electrified during the steam era.|
|Looking east from the tunnel at some beautiful foliage. Those are former catenary towers along the left.|
|Bridge over the Deerfield River just east of the tunnel. The Hoosac Tunnel & Wilmington Railroad connected with the B&M on the other side of the river.|
|Looking across the bridge at the former station site. The HT&W branched off to the left to head north to Wilmington, VT.|
|Heading over to Adams, MA I happened across the Berkshire Scenic Rwy's new operation, including this recently-restored Budd Car.|
|In New Haven RR green & orange, the BSR's SW-8 switcher provides the power. Unfortunately, either they weren't running that day or had already ended ops.|
|Beautifully restored station at Adams, MA with the end of the BSR foliage train on the main.|
Living in southern New England this time of year is like living in Disneyland, between the beautiful foliage, the quaint villages, and the railroading. I haven't even gotten to the steam train yet, but that's coming. I tend to follow the foliage as it peaks from north to south, so I have a little bit of time yet before it gets to the lower Connecticut River Valley.
In the meantime, I'll soak up all the modeling inspiration I can from these sojourns outside of the basement.
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