Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club, Inc.Established in 1992
NARCOA Affiliate Club since 2014
LEGAL NOTICE: Operation of railway equipment, including motorcars, is governed by Federal, State and Railroad authorities. All rail property is owned by someone. Operation of any equipment on or around railroad property is only permitted with permission of the property owner or leasor. CVRTC will assist local, State, and Federal authorities in prosecuting illegal operators of railway equipment. Railway motorcar organizations now exist in most parts of the world. Please contact one of your local organizations. They have access to rail property, equipment information and SAFETY information. They are always looking to promote the hobby/sport and would love to have your help.
|The Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club is an association of railway motorcar enthusiasts dedicated to preserving motorcar history and right-of-way maintenance through active operation and stewardship.|
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|Open House||Wolfeboro||For Sale||Photos||Links|
|(Jule 16, 2022)
In addition to the Wolfeboro Branch, we also operate on the former Boston & Maine Portland Division main line with permission from NH DOT. Usually referred to locally as the Conway Branch. We maintain the track from approximately MP 111.5 to 118.9. This past Satruday we installed platforms at each end of the line to allow an easy way to turn the cars for the return trip back to seton. These are not so unlike the same motorcar platforms that the Boston & Maine would have installed for their MOW motorcar fleet. Lola seemed to be a bit disinterested in all the work. (S McInerney photos)
|(June 28, 2022)
The former MOW tie inserter was converted to mowing duty by past members years ago. The tractor mounted sickle bar has made mowing with the Gandy obsolete. Scott Fuller wanted to put the Nordberg Gandy to good use to rip out the beaver dams that flood the track each Spring and throughout the year. This was it's first test run. Impressive! (S McInerney photos)
|(June 18, 2022)
The June meeting was an Engine House Paint Party. The membership got to work after the business meeting. Most of the front of the building got a first coat. The BOD will schedule a couple of more paint days to complete the other three sides. (S McInerney photos)
|(May 13, 2022)
Any day is a good day to run the Wolfeboro Branch in a motorcar. As new members to the club, the Arnold's are really taking advantage of the Spring weather and the whole family jumps on their new MEC M19 for a ride down the line. (J Arnold photos)
|(April 16, 2022)
The first meeting of the year at Fernald was a Spring cleanup. All the members pitched in after the business meeting to spruce up the station and the engine house grounds. The second floor of Fernald was emptied to prepare for the new roof. The Board of Directors is hoping this is completed by the end of May. Many members took a ride out to Rt 16 after the work was done. (S McInerney photos)
|(April 10, 2022) The Mansur's and the Pepper's got an early start Spring running on the Conway Branch. They report removing some fallen trees and cleaning the flangeways especially at Polly's Crossing. The crossing fared well over the winter and they were able ride all the way up to Rt 16.(A Mansur photo). (SPM)|
|(April 2, 2022) The club held it's annual business meeting at the Tilton Freight House on Saturday, 2 April. Elections of club officers was carried out by the Board of Directors. Many topics were discussed including building maintenance (roofs), painting as well as major trail projects this year like the brush clearing.(S. McInerney photo). (SPM)|
|(November 15, 2021) A message from club President Bruce Stuart: Members, I just received a call from Leroy letting me know that long time member Arthur "Arti" Wiggins has passed away. Art has been with the club for many, many years and was a staple at our meetings until the past year or two due to ongoing health issues. Whenever we would have a function that would entail giving rides, he would always ask if I needed some weight over the drive's on the A-Car for some additional "tractive effort". The air horns on the front of the A-Car came off his plow truck from when he worked for the State crew. Art will be missed. I have no information regarding a service, but will have a card for members to sign at Saturdays meeting. Thank you. Bruce (Art in Center, D. Kotsonis photo). (BDS)|
|(August 29, 2021)
Jon Miner reports another safe, fun and productive day on the rails. Thanks to Ron, Chris & Amy, and Scott and Kathleen for joining me. We patrolled from Bridgewater to Meredith, stopping at the Ashland Depot (photo at left) for lunch on the return trip. We collected three bags of trash, as well as opening up sightlines at the crossings. The foliage trains will start soon.
|(August 21, 2021)
A Note from Open House Organizer Scott Fuller: I want to thank everyone that played a part in making it happen. Our NARCOA EC Tom Sopchak and his wife Terry had, I believe the longest drive, to get to Wolfeboro and without their willingness to do so, the event would not have been able to take place. We had eight motorcars giving rides, nine operators and Gator at the grade crossing flagging. There were more who covered registrations, sales of T-shirts and hats, helping with loading and unloading passengers and a number of other jobs that allowed the day to go smoothly.
Thank you to each and every one of you, it was a team effort that made the day an enjoyable success.
We had exactly 120 people from the public that registered and took a ride. Many of them rode at least two or three times! The weather cooperated for the most part with just one fifteen minute period of rain around noon time, but even the passengers on the open cars didn't seem to be bothered from getting a little wet. A lot of happy and smiling people were introduced to this hobby that we all enjoy.
(C Davis, R Libby photos)
|(July 31-August 9, 2021)
There has been a lot of activity on the recovered section of the Ossipee line over the past several weeks since its rescue. The trail needed maintenance before any mowing could occur as its been idle for several years. Every ride since has been a work ride of some level given the needed brush clearing, beaver activity and obstacle removal for the mowing. Thank you to all the CVRTC members who have contributed to this effort.
(S Fuller, B Stuart photos)
|(July 22, 2021)
Note from CVRTC President, Bruce Stuart: A hard road traveled! Polly's Crossing is completed! We will do our part to keep all parties happy and show our good faith. Perseverance got us here. Please get out and ride the line. A mowing date for this previously inaccessible section will be announced. Thank you to Jon M. for cleaning up the mile posts and setting about to get them painted. I like the idea of a September meeting there.
(B Stuart photos)
|(July 17, 2021)
Note from CVRTC President, Bruce Stuart: For what was projected as a rainy Saturday, CVRTC members had a fairly rain free window for most of the event. Twenty-eight members and eight cars attended the meeting. Rides on both the North and South side took place. Rain caught up with us by the end of the day, but all and all a super day for all involved. The Mountainview Station Restaurant and staff furnished us with a great lunch stop as well as the folks at the Sap House Meadery for an end of day place to relax. The Center Ossipee downtown area with all its turn of the century accoutrements, provides us with a quintessential feeling of a railroad town. We will be working on some improvements making it a little more railcar friendly when unloading. Great to see some new members enjoying the day and a good turn out for the meeting itself. Thanks everyone for making the time. Regards, Bruce.
(S McInerney photos)
|(July 11, 2021)
Patrol Report from Jon Miner: The hardest working track crew in NH was at it again, patrolling in central New Hampshire. We found a large oak down just inside the Plymouth yard limits. We picked up trash, cleared brush at bridge approaches, and painted switch targets. Thanks to Scott & John, Hank & Gary, and Ron! Another safe and enjoyable day on the rails.
(J Miner,S Fuller photos)
|(June 25, 2021)
Patrol Report from Jon Miner: A long day mowing on the Ossipee line for Bruce and I. We seton at 6AM and wrapped up at 5PM. In between we cleared and mowed both sides from Polly's Crossing to Route 16. There is manual cutting needed at the northwest quadrant of the Mountainview crossing for approximately 200ft to the north. We managed to collect two bags of trash.The line is in great shape. Get out and ride, keep your wheels shiny.
(J Miner photos)
|(June 12, 2021)
Patrol Report from Jon Miner: We had four trackcars today with a total of six members and guests. We covered about 15 miles while clearing crossing flangeways and improving the ROW sight lines. The weather was very good weather and it was a safe day. Many thanks to Brad, Ron, Chris, Scott and Johnny.
(J. Miner photo)
|(June 10, 2021)
President Bruce Stuart and Safety Chair Scott Fuller hatched a plan to keep the improvements to the west end coming. After Bruce had secured the steel via donations and delivered it to the work site, Scott arrived on Thursday morning with a trailer full of tools and they built the long planned "fix" for the steep incline to the Governor Wentworth Highway when headed east. They even managed to encompass some pieces of the old Wolfeborough Railroad engine 250 by utilizing some of the discarded boiler tubes out by the engine house. A few were cut up for spacers and gauge rods. Another load of gravel to finish the job should arrive this week.
(S. Fuller, B. Stuart photos)
|(May 22, 2021)
Patrol Report from Jon Miner: Good day on the White Mountain branch patroling for the Plymouth and Lincoln Railroad. The crew did some cutting but mainly clearing flangeways in the crossings after the winter road sanding. Many thanks to Chris and Amy, Ted, Scott and Ron. The photo was taken after turning at Silver Lake Road.
(J. Miner photo)
|(May 15, 2021)
Summary of minutes from the Secretary J Chadbourne: The business meeting came to order with a moment of silence for Peter Armitage who passed recently. Ballots were distributed to all members. The Treasurers report was read and accepted by the membership. After the votes were tallied Kathleen Fuller took her new position as Treasurer and the BOD thanked outgoing Treasurer Dave Kotsonis for his many years in that position. With the recent Wolfeborough memorabilia gift to the club by Rick Libby an Archive Committee was established to catalog and organize the content. Some of it for display in the recently renovated interior of Fernald Station. Scott Fuller was appointed as Safety Committee Chair and will lead the committee in updating the mentoring process. After discussion of some pending maintenance projects and the Trailmaster's Report the meeting adjourned at 11:23. There was a large contingent of cars at the May meeting and many members rode out to Rt 16 afterward.
(J. Mazzie photo)
|(May 12, 2021)
The BOD met via a Zoom meeting on Wednesday evening. Topics covered were enabling members to renew memberships on-line via the clubs website, Fernald Station's roof repair, painting the west end of the engine house, addressing the gravel between the rails over the causeways on the west end as well as many other minor items. Discussions helped frame up the agenda for the Annual membership wide Business Meeting to be held on Saturday 15 May.
|(April 10, 2021)
Patrol Report from VP Jesse Mazzie: It was a perfect 75+ degree day!!! Ron M. headed east followed by Jesse. Minor work at the crossings and small branches moved by Ron. We came across a cluster of large pine trees down beyond Clark Road. We cleared some of the smaller trees but we could not safely cut the large trees because we can not see if there is anyone walking on the trail from where we need to cut. We need a work party to safely accomplish that next weekend (Saturday 17 April) Heading back we met up with Hayden and patrolled west to Whitten neck cutting a downed tree and moving some light deadfall. Once cleard we headed on to Whitten neck and returned.
(J. Mazzie photo)
|(March 28, 2021)
From President Bruce Stuart: I want to convey a much deserved thanks to Scott and Kathy Fuller. I mentioned in a text that I was going to head over to Fernald and cover the roof with a tarp to prevent any damage to the interior. It was Kathy who insisted her and Scott make a trip north to get the station roof "safely" tarped using multiple hands opposed to one pair. We met at 10:00 AM and Scott laid out a plan. Two and a half hours later at the start of a steady rain, mission accomplished. I cannot thank the two of them enough with the help on a Sunday morning. While making this repair, we were able to take a good look at both gable end overhangs. Before the new shingles can go on, we will have to correct some previous work that was performed when the building was converted from an engine house for #9 to the present station.
(K. Fuller photo)
|(February 23, 2021)
Some work has begun to improve the interior of Fernald Station. Club members have volunteered some time to give the interior of Fernald Station a rehab. The floor was sanded to remove the floor tile adhesive. Then the walls and ceiling were smoothed and patched with nearly five gallons of compound. The sanding has begun. This will be followed with paint on the walls and floor and urethane on the woodwork. Meanwhile other club members are working on a grant to replace the roof on Fernald AND the engine house. There are BOD plans in the works to have an exterior paint party this season for both structures. Left, Scott F is seen using the power sander. The motorcar season in New England is almost here!
(S. McInerney photo)
|(December 21, 2020)
Wishing all our motorcar buddies and families a great holiday! A note from club President Bruce Stuart:
Good morning, and a Merry Christmas to all of you. Yes, this has been quite a year for each and every one of us. Not just with our time together as a club, but with ourselves, our families and our friends. The constant navigation through waters unfamiliar to us, has fostered creative ways to chart those waters and ultimately reach our destination. I so look forward to not just seeing each of you as our season begins this coming spring, but seeing your smiles and expressions and sharing in your excitement of once again plying the rails. With the advent of this vaccine, the near future looks to be promising for a return to some semblance of normality with our club. The enjoyment we experience with setting on for an afternoon ride to the Miss Wakefield, or simply the social aspect we take in at one of our club gatherings. Hopefully, we won't find ourselves pining for those pieces of time out of our lives and everything Bedford Falls once again returns to our rails. I take solace in the fact that the lights still burn bright on the station platform, awaiting another year when voices fill the yard with conversation and the snap of two stroke engines echo off the tree line. Merry Christmas everyone. Bruce.
(J. Miner photo)
Work Ride Recap from Jon Miner: "Long, but safe day on the rails. We patrolled from Silver Lake Road to the Lakeport drawbridge in preparation for next week's excursion train. Took care of brush cutting a few spots where the hy-rail cutter missed. Ben Clark says "Thanks very much!" (J Miner Photo)
|(October 18, 2020)
A message from the club Vice President, Jesse Mazzie:
First, thank you to all those who came to this and all the M&B runs this year. Your participation and professional attitude towards safety first, last and always was noticed. Ten railcars gathered on a PERFECT fall day at Howard st. in Wilton. Set on went smooth and we gathered for our safety meeting. Once we set out it was slow and steady up the big hill due to the anticipated frosty rail. We stopped in Greenfield for lunch and some members went over and checked out the blacksmith shop that was working. After turning in Bennington we checked out the closed trestle and Contoocook river. On the way back we stopped at the historic Elmwood Jct. to see the remains of a historic area. We stayed on schedule and were off the rail in time with our thanks to the M&B for helping contribute to a great series of runs this year. (J Mazzie photos) (SPM)
The club rode to remember Art Hawkes by running his beloved Mountain Division. We enjoyed spectacular warm summer weather in October. It was so nice to have Brenda Hawkes join us on this somewhat "Adventure Excursion". Thanks to Brian and Sue for providing a seat for Brenda. Brenda remarked, "As I rode, I watched all the mile posts he had lovingly painted the whole length and laughed how well they were holding up and how precise they were painted. He was a perfectionist. Getting back just after dark was even perfect as he had no sense of time and almost always got back late and often after dark. Again our son Will and I thank you for this."
It was our pleasure Brenda and Will. Thank you for joining us. We were happy to do the full trip to the New Hampshire border and back. (B Leo,S Fuller, S McInerney Photos)
Meeting Report from Vice President Jesse Mazzie: This morning seven more Cotton Valley members took part in mentoring day at Fernald Station. We started off with classroom teaching on safety/operating rules, mechanical and lots of other motorcar topics. After a morning of classroom learning we headed out on the Wolfeboro line and upon arrival back at Fernald 5 new NARCOA Mentored operators were signed off on and the other 2 will get checked off next insurance season. Everyone did great and it was safe day. Thank you to Gordon, Danny and Mark from NEREX for coming over and congratulations to Jon M, Paul R, Kathleen F, Chris R, James I, Glenn F and Ken B on your work getting "your wings". (J Mazzie Photo)
Message from CVRTC President Bruce Stuart: "The family day gathering photos are attached here showing the summer time staples such as burgers, dogs and unbelievably sweet corn on the cob. Long time member Don Wendel is seen holding down the station bench and quietly observing the going on's. The ever growing fan club of Scott, crowd toward Scott and Kathy's car full of questions and advice on the operation of their two strokes. Leisurely conversations sprinkled in throughout the yard enjoying a great afternoon lunch compliments of Sean and Rick, thank you both for manning the grill." (S Stuart Photos)
Vice President Jesse Mazzie brought the meeting to order at 10:0 AM. It looks like our calendar will have several options to ride over the next two months. The next meeting on 19 September will be Family Day. Bring your family for a BBQ and rides on the branch line. We will have the gang trailer out and organized rides both east and west. After the meeting several cars headed east on the Wolfeboro branch. Some cars also went over to the freshly mowed Ossipee line. At left is a group photo of member cars lined up at Cotton Valley. Second photo is cars pushing over the crossing near the Mountainview Station in Center Ossipee ready to head north. (J Mazzie, S McInerney Photos)
Jon Miner led a crew on a work ride on the Winnipesaukee Scenic section of the Plymouth and Lincoln on Saturday. Ron M. brought his motorcar AND a trailer to help transport the debris that was collected along the ROW in the Laconia section. The work crew got a tour of the beautiful Laconia station after the work ride. Great to see renovation work is being done on the old Concord & Montreal RR station. (J Miner Photos)
The meeting was called to order at 10:00 AM by President Bruce Stuart. After the treasurer and membership reports Jon M gave notice of several work ride opportunites with our host railroads (Plymouth & Lincoln, Seashore Trolley, Milford & Bennington). James C and crew was thanked as he led a work party at the seton location in Center Ossipee last month. Members were also reminded about helping to keep the area outside the railhead (10 feet) clear of debris for the success of our sicklebar cutting. We will probably mow Wolfeboro with the deck mower before the end of August. Photos at left show the sicklebar running from Rt 109 to Sand Box Rd after the meeting concluded. Members went out ahead of the tractor to clear obstacles. (J Miner Photos)
MOW Report from James Chadbourne: We had a very successful morning on the Ossipee line today. Toby Lowry, Rick OBrien, Jon Miner, Norm Yeaton, and Hayden joined me as we went to town on the overgrown siding at Center Ossipee behind the Mountain View diner at 9:00 AM. With a good set of tools and a willing crew we made short work of it. It will need mowing and the dirt in the gauge near Mountain View will have to be removed by the tractor. We were all set off and safely on our way before 13:00. After the main work was complete the five of us rode the line to Pollys Crossing. There were 3 or 4 trees (photo) we had to stop and remove. Video link below from the return trip crossing the swamp south of MP B113/I26. Jon was stopping at each MP to record an accurate GPS fix on them. B115 seems to be missing. (J Chadbourne Photos)
After many delays and postponements caused by the global pandemic, the club was able to finally hold it's annual business meeting. Usually held every year in March (stated in club by-laws), it was strange to sit down for the first time as a group in 2020 in June! Elections were held, updates from the Trail Master, Membership Secretary and many other agenda topics discussed. Some trackcars headed east to the Miss Wakefield after the meeting. Some maintenance was performed on the 60" deck mower. (C. Sullaway Photo)
Jessie Mazzie Trip Report: After a well organized set on we had a brief safety meeting and headed out on the line for a safe 36 mile round-trip excursion. We had a nice lunch stop at the Harvester Market in Greenfield. They seemed very happy to have our business and the food was great. Once in Bennington at the turnaround point, we took a walk down to the falls at the dam. On the way back we stopped at Elmwood Junction where Boston and Maine Historical Society historian, Rick Kfoury, gave an informative talk about it's importance and activity in the remote section of New Hampshire. The group headed back to Wilton and set-off expeditiously. A big thank you to Jon Miner and David Maher for doing the over-the-road flagging. A very big thank you to all the members who turned out for this event. Both our railroad pilot and the owner of the railroad were present and very impressed with our professionalism and safety oriented attitude. (J. Mazzie Photo)
Jon Miner Trip Report: Thanks to James, Jesse, Sean, and Norm for a fun and safe day of operations at the Seashore Trolley Museum. We didn't keep track but since we pretty much ran hourly, we racked up about 20 miles. As a bonus, we never had to turn the cars around! The weather was almost perfect... with the exception of a downpour that occurred as we finished our final run. The Seashore staff had fun taking some motorcar rides too. The staff also provided lunch for the operators. We all look forward to doing this event in the future. (S. McInerney Photos)
Jesse Mazzie Trip Report: Had a wonderful day on the rails of New Hampshire. Three cars headed east from Fernald to meet Scott and Kathleen who were already out on the line. The scenery was great and the mowing is perfect. We all had lunch at the Miss Wakefield Diner. They accomadated us with outside seating. On the way back we had a meet with Hank and gang at Cotton valley. After returning to Fernald, two cars headed out seton at Silver Lake. We had a great ride there too! A few small trees had to be cut and moved but it was short work for Hayden‘s chainsaw. We also cleared the remains of a flooded beaver dam off the track where at one point it was under water. (S Fuller & J Mazzie Photos)
On Sunday CVRTC in union with the Cotton Valley Trail Committee (CVTC) addressed the trail flooding east of Cotton Valley. PVC pipe was installed in a manner that will hopefully foil the efforts of the local beaver population. The objectives were to provide enough water to support the beavers and other wildlife it attracts but in a controlled manner to preserve the rail bed from flooding and erosion. Water was over the railhead during the past week until trail volunteers cleared the debris from the culvert areas. The fury civil engineers were busy with their nocturnal repairs after each cleaning. The groups will monitor the new installation to gauge effectiveness, water levels and consider modifications or improvements if needed.
A few club members gathered in an impromptu teleconference meeting today. The effort was to test if the club could use this method to conduct some business during the governors request to stay at home until 4 May during the virus outbreak. The Board of Directors will test this a bit more and decide if they might want to use it in place of our April meeting which has been cancelled. It seemed to be a great way for the BOD to get together and accomplish some tasks that do not require presence at Fernald. Jesse Mazzie photo.
The Board of Directors in cooperation with State of New Hampshire health authorities have cancelled the business meeting that was to be held at the Tilton Freight House. At this time, the BOD will schedule the annual business meeting on the club's regular April meeting at Fernald. If there are improvements in the health event and restrictions on gatherings are lifted to allow such an activity we will next meet on Saturday, 18 April. We hope all members stay healthy and safe.
Spring is coming! Don't forget to mark your calendar for the annual season opener CVRTC Business Meeting on 28 March. Check the Events page for details on the where and when! (Bruce Stuart photo from early February)
(February 29, 2020)
A Leap Year BOD meeting was held at Vice President Jesse Mazzie's home this year. The four hour meeting covered a lot of ground. Decisions about family membership, operation and capital expenditures were covered. Some of these changes are reflected in a new version of the by-laws. The Directors are prepared to explain the results at the Annual Business Meeting on 28 March. Please see the Events page for details on the where and when of this important CVRTC meeting.
Left to right, Scott's Nathan, Bruce's A5,James' new truck, Pauls trip to NC, Toby's M19 hibernating!
(February 4, 2020)
As we wait for season opener CVRTC Business Meeting on 28 March, some of our members have tackled a few projects on their motorcars. Some have focused on trailers or their tow vehicles. Bruce and James have acquired new trucks to help get their motorcars to Fernald or our host railroads. Bruce has also acquired a Fairmont A5. Scott has set his sights on a Nathan air horn project for his MT-14. Tony found his brake parts. Paul R has traveled to North Carolina to ride in the warmer weather on the Red Springs and Northern RR. Sean has improved his Woodings seating height and angle and added some new lighting. Some members are still hibernating!
|(16 November 2019)
Message from the Club Vice President, Jesse Mazzie:
Club President Bruce Stuart was on business travel and VP Jessie Mazzie took the gavel for today's meeting. It was cool so it was held in Fernald Station with the warmth of the wood stove. A card was passed around to sign for Art Hawkes who has been ill. Jessie re-iterated the dues increase voted on by the membership at the Octtober meeting. The dues for 2020 will be $50. The dual axle trailer discussed and approved by vote at the October meeting was picked up by Ron Mitchell and it's now stored in the engine house. This will facilitate moving the tractor easily for maintenance and with mowing operations over in Ossipee. More consideration was given to adding hy-rail gear to the tractor and some potential sources for used gear was discussed. The dates may slip into early 2020 to repair the roof on Fernald as "winter is coming". The meeting ended at 10:30. A few cars ran the line out to Rt 16. Left, Jesse and Liz enjoy a snow filled gauge ride at the season closer. (SPM)
|(3 November 2019)
Message from the Club President, Bruce Stuart:
Today's volunteer day went well with approx 21 volunteers. They spent about 4 hours out on the line cutting at three different locations. The curve as you leave the first wetland area after Cotton Valley is now completed. An area around Moxie Junction got some attention too. The last section along the river around the picnic table is also cleared. There are now one or two areas along the river section that we could place some benches for a nice riverside view. Several downed trees from the recent wind storm were cleared from the trail just east of Clark Road too. The Seven Lakes Snowmobile Club tackled that job. Thanks guys! Expect more published volunteer days next season with CVTC. See everyone at the next meeting. (SPM)
|(20 October 2019)
Frosty morning at Canterbury as the group seton. We had five motorcars
and eight members and guests. Our mission for the day was to clean up
any storm damage between Canterbury and the former Winnisquam depot, as
well as do some more cutting along the causeway and campgrounds.
The storm damage was less than expected, but the chainsaws came in handy. Chris took this picture as we got ready to clear a tree near the Lochmere siding.
Received an email from the Hobo Railroad, saying "Thank you-- we really appreciate your assistance and support.". That really sums up the impact that our club members make! (JWM)
|(19 October 2019)
The club gathered in the engine house for the monthly business meeting. We welcomed
a new member and discussed the days activity. What else! Cutting the corridor out
near Frost Crossing. We have been busy clearing any obstructions that are in the
path of the new seven foot sicklebar. The ROW has never been bigger since the
Boston & Maine Railroad left town.
Pictured left is the tractor leaving Frost Crossing and heading east to Cotton Valley siding. Right, Vice President Jesse Mazzie "contemplates" the awesome fall foliage of northern New Hampshire where we ride, then proceeds to cut down half of it! :-) (SPM)
|(13 October 2019)
It was pretty cloudy as Jon drove past Franconia Notch and Cannon Mountain,
and the forecast still called for a chance of rain. It wasn't sounding like
a great day for a foliage excursion in Northern New Hampshire.
We had nine motorcars, with members, guests, and Roger, our railroad pilot for the day. It was easy to seton at Hazens, with plenty of parking in the NHC transload yard. After our safety briefing, we headed west to Whitefield on the former B&M trackage to the ball signal. From there, we reversed direction, heading east to Waumbek Junction, then north on former Maine Central track to Coos Junction, where we returned to B&M tracks for the trip to Groveton.
The sun came out, and we had some great views of foliage. To the left, one of Amy Read's pictures. (JWM)
|(12 October 2019)
Today was "Members Day", Jon and his son Dave started their day with
hardy breakfast at the Kennebunk McDonalds. The brush cutting mission
today was to open up several culverts. These are built with massive
granite blocks. After following the inspection trip back to the
Visitors Center, they switched over to the Butler Grove Lead, and gave
rides all the way over to the Highview Barn; even shuttling some
Museum staff. Hey, why walk when you can ride?
To the left... TC-42 is perched on the mainline; those granite blocks are about two feet thick, the culvert opening three feet high. Jon thinks he might be done for the season, but already thinking about spring, and continuing to build our relationship with the museum. (JWM)
|(23 September 2019)
We hit the big screen! Well.... maybe just the large flat screen in your living
room. The WMUR Chronicle crew with Sean McDonald payed a visit on the Monday after
our September meeting. We will be featured in an upcoming series about trains in
AND they loved us so much that they will be back to shoot all the intros and wraps for the week long show about trains. The date will be announced shortly. The week long series should air in November on Channel 9.
Pictured left to right, President Bruce Stuart looking on as club member Jon Miner is interviewed by Sean McDonald. Videographer Paul utilized the gang trailer to get some "dolly" shots of railcars on the adjacent track. Frank enjoys a conversation with host Sean McDonald. (SPM)
|(21 September 2019)
The usual business meeting was held. After the meeting we headed east to do more
pre-cutting of small saplings and bushes to help speed up the sickle bar cutting
with the tractor. Check out a short video of our weed-whacking adventure
on our YouTube channel: Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club
To the left we see the usual ROW discussions taking place and to the right Toby wrestles with the Stihl. We have more cutting to do so please ask the Trail Master, Bruce Stuart, for the latest task list. (SPM)
|(14 September 2019)
Jon and Chris enjoyed a cool Fall morning, continuing to push back the bushes
along the STM mainline. They were joined on the return trip by Charlie, head of
the track department, who pointed out a couple of more spots need attention. At
this point, there is no longer anything hitting the trolleys, so we're focusing
on clearing around culverts, and poles bases to make inspections easier. Everyone
is happy with the work we've been doing, and the professionalism we bring.
Next trip over is scheduled for their "Members Day" on October 12. (JWM)
|(7 September 2019)
Today's crew was Frank, Tommy, Hayden, Collin and Jon. The crew took
advantage of the nice cool weather to finish their cutting in the
Northfield swamp. Due to the wetlands, this is a spot where the State of
NH cannot spray.
After lunch at Tilton House of Pizza, they went all the way south to White Mountain Junction (Concord), before returning to Canterbury. Great day, and a big thanks to the crew at WMUR for an accurate forecast! (JWM)
|(26 August 2019) Another Mowing Monday on the Wolfeboro branch. This time we traveled from Fernald Station to the western end of track at Route 28 in downtown Wolfeboro. Hayden L. cleared enough saplings the previous Wednesday to allow us to take the mower west! The rails are now clearly seen as you pass the trailhead along Rt 28 in town. So get out there and enjoy the West End! (SPM)|
|(25 August 2019)
We got to run from Canterbury up to the Tilton Freighthouse.
Big thanks to Frank, Tommy, Chris, Hayden and two Jons... The crew took advantage of the nice cool weather to do some serious cutting in the Northfield swamp. We have a little bit more to do on the north end to finish up the job. Due to the wetlands, this is a spot where the State of NH cannot spray. (JWM)
|(17 August 2019) There is a new addition to the furniture in Fernald Station. As many of you know we have been slowly planning to update the interior of Fernald Station so that it may look a bit more like how it did in the 1970's during the heyday of the Wolfeboro Railroad. Gator and Deb Truman have donated a nice old rolltop desk that looks perfect in the office area on the first floor. Thank you from all the members! (SPM)|
|(17 August 2019) Thank you to all the people who came to Fernald Station this year to ride with us. We had a great time and the weather did not deter us from having some fun. We love having an Open House each year and look forward to many more in the future. We gave rides to nearly 100 individuals. Whole familys piled onto the gang trailer to enjoy the ride on the old Wolfeboro Branch. (SPM)|
|(9 August 2019)
Jon headed over for another productive day cutting back brush at the
Seashore Trolley Museum. At this point, we're no cutting stuff that was
hitting the finely restored trolleys, but we're improving sight lines, and
clearing around platforms, trolley poles, and catenary supports.
In the picture, TC-42 has stopped at "Morrison Hill", and Jon will grab the "Orange Work Paddle" before heading out on the mainline. They've got a pretty simple, but effective system. The next trolley out will see that the work paddle is missing, so they'll expect to find someone on the line. Jon will also put his sweeps down before continuing. He's found that if the sweeps are down in the Vistor Center area, they pick up grease and plow the pea-stone ballast in the walking areas.
Interested in helping out... get in touch with Jon and he can provide more details. (JWM)
|(28 July 2019) Big crew today! Jon and David were joined by Hank and Lili, as well as Bill. Bill also works in the Museum's Restoration Shop. Thanks to Hank for taking the picture, as we sit on the Biddeford track with some old PCC cars. (JWM)|
|(20 July 2019)
The monthly business meeting started at 10:00 AM. Bruce and Jesse covered NHOHVA
status, Fernald's need for a new roof and the work needed for the new sickle bar
on the club tractor. After the business meeting some club members went east and
some west to improve the sight lines at the crossings.
Photo Left: As the new owner of a Woodings CBI, one of our newest members (and among the youngest), Hayden takes a spin in his first motorcar. The smile says it all! Photo Right: Tommy wields the cutter at a crossing west of Fernald. (SPM)
|(14 July 2019)
On Sunday, Jon and David headed over for another early morning.
Repeating what worked before, they got two hours of cutting done,
before meeting the Inspection Crew at Talbott Park. David learned
how to apply grease to the insides of the trolley rail. After
following the trolley back and setting-off, the guys rode the
first revenue run and chatted with the crew about future cutting.
Pictured; David stands next to TC-42 at the Library Crossing, in front of Tower C. (JWM)
|(5 July 2019)
A year ago, Jon visited the Seashore Trolley Museum and noted that
branches were touching or nearly touching in several places, potentially
damaging their finely restored equipment. This was certainly an issue
that Jon, and the Cotton Valley membership, has expertise in.
On Friday, Jon headed over for an early morning, getting several hours of cutting done before backing into the Biddeford Spur, and waiting for the inspection trolley to come out to the Talbott Park loop. Jon would then follow it back to the Vistor Center.
It's great to be able to leverage the Club's expertise and help out the short lines and heritage railroads in New England. (JWM)
|(4-5 July 2019) Jon and Clif could almost be called the "Minute Men of Weed Whackers". Juggling schedules at the last minute, and over the holiday, they were able to help clear around signal cabinets and a customer siding in Concord. Clif's photo shows the forrest tunnel! (JWM)|
|(30 June 2019) On Sunday Jesse, Chris and Pete patrolled New England Southern on a shakedown run before the NEREX Vermont run. Other than stopping for a black bear it was an uneventful and safe run. (JM)|
|(29 June 2019)
Great day up at the Mount Washington Regional Airport! Scott, Kathleen, and
Jon and David got to meet a lot of interested people, as well as enjoying
all the sights and sounds of an air show, classic car show, small engine
show, and craft show. But wait... there's more... steam trains, steam boat,
fried dough, french fries... and a couple great looking Chevy Colorados!
Lots of brochures were handed out; expect some potential new members and visitors at the August Open House. (JWM)
|(28 June 2019)
Sunny and hot day in the Capitol region; Thanks to Norm, Clif, Sam, Scott, Ryan, Will and Russ... great day for CVRTC members and guests.
We did a little bit of cutting at Lambert Road and a few misc places. The State of NH should be cutting it this year, so we're not going to expend a lot of effort until after that.
Stay hydrated... stay cool.. stay safe! (JWM)
|(16 June 2019)
Thanks to Dave M, Al D, Pete L, and Jon M for helping out at CSRR's
Fathers Day event, giving rides to enuthuiastic vistors. The day started
out with the arrival of #7470; so great to see, smell, hear, and feel
coal-burning steam power back in the Valley! It was probably the first time
that TC-42 has seen live steam!
Each Valley train would come down to Conway, with an hour layover. Visitors got to try their hand with a mini-excavator, driving spikes, spraying water from CSRR's firetruck, and locomotive and caboose tours... and the always popular motorcar rides, with a 400ft round trip. Once the train left, we had an hour long break before the next train.
To the left, several pictures taken by Eric G. Pete and Jon watch the steam engine perform a run-around in the morning. In the second picture, the guys are coming through the switch, and back to the loading platform. Over the photographer's left shoulder is the Conway freighthouse. (JWM)
|(15 June 2019)
A note about Family Day from Vice President Jesse Mazzie
"What a fantastic day on the rails. A huge thank you to Ken, Bill, Bruce and Sean who did lots of behind the scenes work to make this event a success. Hayden and I patrolled west into town then returned for a short club business meeting. After the meeting 5 cars including the big A car headed over Rt. 109 to ride our scenic west end. The track and flangeways are clear so please enjoy this beautiful portion of track. Upon our arrival the hard working team served a great lunch to us all. I'm still full as I write this message. After enjoying some social time cars headed east for a great sunny excursion on these New Hampshire rails. We were happy to have with us long time friend of the CVRTC, Peter Dearness and his wife attend the BBQ and motorcar ride. The group headed toward Rt 16 for great trip with outstanding weather. Thank you again to all that came and all that volunteered to make this day happen.
Interesting historical side note: While taking Pete on a tour of Fernald, upstairs in the station he told me in 1974 a young Mr. Dearness ventured into the upstairs office of Fernald station to meet Don Halleck, the founder of the Wolfeboro Railroad. He wanted to find out about what it took to run a railroad as he was looking at getting into the business. Forty-five years and three short lines later the rest as they say is, History." (JMazzie)
|(26 May 2019) CVRTC Members enjoyed a great day on the former Maine Central Mountain Division, in exchange for their efforts over the last year. Jon and Hank did a great job piloting the group, and the weather couldn't have been much better. We started our day, setting on Redstone, then backing down to the Saco River bridge. From there, we headed West, clearing Mountain Junction, and backing into North Conway. Track permit in hand, we headed to Fayban, making stops in Bartlett and Crawford. (JWM)|
|(18 May 2019) Finally a warm and sunny Spring day in New England! The May meeting started at 10:00 PM with a good gathering. After the business meeting the group headed west on the line to the Moose Point Rd. crossing to repair a broken rail. Scott Fuller brought his portable Onan powered welder and Al Dumais had his van full of tools. The club tractor was used to excavate the crossing. It was a busy crossing today as there was a canoe/kayak event on Lake Wentworth. Other members made good use of the time and cleared some winter deadfall. We will need to do a lot of cleanup like this on the line before we deploy the new 7 foot sickle bar. (SPM)|
|(11 May 2019) Six trackcars, and ten CVRTC members and guests, made up the crew for today's patrol. A big, "THANKS!", to Hayden, Hank, Marty, Sam, Leroy, Clif, James, Kathleen, and Scott for coming out today. The crew seton at Canterbury, and worked north to Lochmere, and then continued up to Winnisquam. The focus of the work to was improve sightlines, and dig out flangeways at crossings. (JWM)|
|(27 April 2019) New England Southern recently held a memorial luncheon for the former Treasurer, Kenneth Coombs, of NEGS. Several CVRTC members were in attendance. Seen here are Jon Miner and Jesse Mazzie with NEGS owner Peter Deerness at the Merrimack Valley Railroad offices in Northfield. The office is the former Boston, Concord and Montreal freight house for Tilton. (JWM)|
|(20 April 2019) Winter was an uninvited guest at our April Meeting. While the tracks at Fernald appeared clear, it only took a short trackcar ride East, and around the corner to find ice and snow still covering the railhead. Jon hiked west, and found similar conditions on that side of the road too. The Wolfeboro Railroad is one of the few places in New Hampshire where the rails generally run in an East-West orientation, and as such, the snow melt occurs a little later in the season. Members worked to clean up around the enginehouse, including some trees falling toward the trail. (JWM)|
|(13 April 2019)
Opening day for the New England Southern Railroad, and the White Mountain
Branch! Jon and his crew of Hayden, Collin, Sam, Leroy, Nick, Scott, and guests
patrolled 40 miles round trip, clearing the winter's damage. To their
surprise, very little storm cleanup was needed. Our patrol did uncover
several issues that we reported to the Track Department; they'll
get out before trains start running.|
It's great to be back on the rails, and more importantly, working safely and professionally with local railroads. (JWM)
|(March 6, 2019) The Board of Directors met this past Saturday, 2 March. Treasurer Dave Kotsonis & wife Nancy were kind enough to host the gathering. In attendance were President Bruce Stuart, Vice President Jesse Mazzie, Secretary James Chadborne, Directors Leroy Tripp Sr, Russ Hoyt, Clif Mills and members Sam Plourde and Sean McInerney and of course, Dave Kotsonis. We will post the highlights on the club's Yahoo group soon. Photo: Jesse Mazzie. (SPM)|
|(January 5, 2019) The board has moved to a new venue this year and scheduled the annual season opener business meeting at the Merrimack Valley Railroad Freight House in Northfield, NH. It is on Saturday, 30 March at 10:00AM. See the Events page for location details and Google map links. For the Boston & Maine Railroad fans in the club, this property was once the freight house for Tilton, NH. The Tilton station, located on the opposite side of the river (now the bank parking lot) was razed in the late 1950's. It is also the home of the Caboose Train. The club will be offering coffee and juice along with donuts and pastries. Please feel free to bring a baked good to share. The doors will open at 9:00 AM and the meeting will start at 10:00. The board is putting together the agenda now so please send any items that you would like to see covered. (SPM)|
|(October 27, 2018) Due to a reschedule of the October business meeting AND very heavy rains along with all the flash flood warnings, attendance was understandably low at the October business meeting at Fernald. Instead of fixing the broken rail at Moose Point crossing, some of the work typically done at the November meeting was done this Saturday. Our usual winter preparedness drill. We don't have a photo from the meeting so here is one of the enginehouse at Fernald from 1973 near the inception of the Wolfeboro Railroad. (BDS)|
|(October 26, 2018) The atrocious weather this fall has prevented many of us from attending the October meeting. It was moved because of a rail event that could not be re-scheduled. An unfortunate side affect to that along with the weather was failing to allow us to see the culmination of Dave Bowles Memorial Garden project. Its beautiful. The thoughtful stonework and flowers will be there to greet us in the Spring. The board would like to thank all those members who assisted Dave with this project for the club. It was the last thing Dave did for the club before his passing. (SPM)|
|(October 13, 2018) Steve Medlyn reports that the club had a great day on the rails at the Milford & Bennington RR Saturday. From the "feed bag" put on by the Greenfield Historical Society to all the great views to Bennington and back, it was a fun day for all. Thanks to all the participants for a safe and beautiful ride. Thank you for hosting Steve. Please pass along our gratitude to Peter and the RR. Photo credits: Will Scopa. (SPM)|
|(October 9, 2018) It is with heartfelt sadness that I bring to the membership news of the passing of Dave Bowles. Dave always made it a point to be at any important event or lend a hand with club activities. Whether it was cutting down the trees that surrounded Fernald Station, moving the clubs tractor to my house for repair, using his background as a civil engineer or using his experience with the Veterans Cemetery in helping with the CVRTC Memorial Garden. David wanted to be a part of it all. He was extremely involved with the snowmobile club and several other entities that embraced his involvement. He was very committed to anything and everything. Dave was 84. He didn't believe in slowing down and could be methodical in his explanation of his thoughts on a project. I'll miss those thoughts now. I will apprise the membership of any service and dates. Both David and Mrs. Bowles are, and have been very involved with their church. Rest in Peace David. (BDS)|
|(6 October 2018) Today was a typical fall day in central New Hampshire. It started out with a little fog, and the sun attempted to poke through. With track permit in hand, and a safety meeting, the crew headed out to work. The primary task was to dig out the flangeways at the crossings. The crew finished some cutting in Northfield, and added reflective stripes to the switch targets. In the picture, the guys have stopped in Northfield for lunch at the Tilton House of Pizza. Left to right... Tom, James, Hayden and Frank. Jon took the picture; his trackcar, the only modern Onan today, is out of view to the left. (JWM)|
|(15 September 2018) Great day for a meeting, especally when your office has four wheels and a wide open view of New Hampshire. Today's meeting was hosted by the Silver Lake Railroad; big thanks to Neil and Bruce for putting this together. To the left, Jesse's picture shows the group during our morning Safety Briefing. Bruce went over the condition of the line, and noted the one dirt crossing that operators had to pay attention to. The line had been mowed earlier this week, and we had already run a track patrol this morning! Members got to make several round-trips between the Siler Lake depot and Boulder Road. The Club will be working with the local snowmobile club to open up more of the line for trackcars. (JWM)|
|(12 September 2018) The regular monthly meeting is being held this Saturday at 10 AM at the Silver Lake Railroad which is in Madison New Hampshire, many of you probably are familiar with it. If you were not it is also on the Ossipee branch but further north. If you were new to the club with the area put this address in your GPS. 1381 Village Rd, Madison, New Hampshire 03875 (JWM)|
|(18 August 2018) We had a great day on the rails Saturday! The club had a blast hosting its Open House for the third year in a row. So many smiling faces on both young and old! Thank you to all the club members for making it a great event for those that attended. Dave did a fantastic job keeping us all in sync in a safe manner and the whole operation ran very smoothly. Thank you to the car operators, exhibit work in Fernald, release and tickets, concession and crowd control. An additional thank you to those who helped expand the food offerings, awesome! I also observed many of you in great conversations with our guests. I am sure the community appreciated our efforts so lets keep it growing. These neighbors gave us a great reason to share our passion for railroad history. The weather held for our 160+ riders, most of which were new to motorcars but on the other hand I spoke with a few people who have ridden with us for many years too! Always a fun time at CVRTC. Thank you all! (SPM)|
|(11 August 2018) We've had a busy summer on the New England Southern, including two back to back work rides. Under the threat of rain, our crew of Collin, Jim, Hayden, Clif, Frank, Tommy and Jon (behind the camera) got cutting done at milepost C21 and Noyes Rd. After lunch at the now famous Tilton House of Pizza, they trimmed around some of the old semaphore signals. (JWM)|
|(16 July 2018) Our President and Trail Master decided to spif up the line before the July meeting. He was out after work this week mowing the line with the deck mower finishing at dusk (under Cliff's Fernald lights). The line looks good for the July meeting this Saturday. (SPM)|
|(16 June 2018) Family Day at Fernald! It was a great day with fellow motorcar club members. Gator, Debbie and Bill helped us put on the feedbag! Thank you to that team for a great meal with the strawberry shortcake! Thank you to those who provided the pot lock dishes as well. Afterwards we took family rides with Bruce's A5 and the gang car along with other motorcars. We took one final ride in the mid afternoon out to Rt 16 and back. The weather was perfect with the best of company. (SPM)|
|(3 June 2018) Club members who volunteered at Conway Scenic Railroad last year were rewarded with a ride from Redstone to Fayban on Sunday. The weather could not have been any better! Lilli snapped a picture of the group when they stopped at the Mt Willard section house location. We'll look forward to scheduling a second excursion for later this year. (JWM)|
|(19 May 2018) Despite the best intentions of the weather forcasters trying to scare everyone away, members were greeted at Fernald by sunny blue skies. Bruce and Jon got an early start, and were soon joined by lots of other members. Jesse and Peter started worked on replacing ties in the yard, with others cleaned up inside the enginehouse, and started hanging up the wooden railroad signs that the Club had purchased. (JWM)|
|(5 May 2018) Trying hard to bring in new YOUNG blood to the hobby. The Club represented Railroading in the Transportation section at the New Hampshire State Jamboree held at Loudon racetrack. The local BSA group, Daniel Webster Council, hosted the weekend event. Over 3000 scouts and leaders were in attendance and our foot traffic was pretty good. We had two cars. One was a two-stroke so the older Scouts could crank start it. Not too many takers though... LOL. Good time for the club members too! We handed out a lot of club brochures. Thanks to Bruce Stuart, Tony Aftuck, Jerry Kelley and Clif Mills for assisting. (SPM)|
|(21 April 2018) Members met on a sunny Saturday at Fernald. Before getting started Bruce and Sean surveyed the tree work clean up. Jesse lubricated the tractor/backhoe and got it started. Peter brought a professional leaf blower to blow down the engine house and yard, Pete also did an initial assessment on the Gandy getting it running. Once it is running will we have a training class for those interested. Many members gathered for a short meeting where some painting of the engine house was discussed as well as reroofing Fernald. Also discussed was returning the Gandy back to a tie inserter again. We also learned about a possible run on the Milford-Bennington line in May. After that members set out to clear trees taken down by the contractor and clearing up all the slash. Many hands make light work. Then Sean and Dave took down the two small dead trees behind Fernald. After that Jesse went to the 109 crossing and removed material between the rail so our crossing to the west side will be easier. Clif demonstrated his work on the solar system and electric lights inside Fernald. There is enough solar to power a computer. He has movies on the former WRR 250. Many members helped with the clean up and other tasks unseen by this author. A thank you to all that came to a well attended April meeting. We had new faces as well a few old faces come back too :-). 2018 is off to a great start. (JM)|
|(11 March 2018)
Here are the results of the elections:
|(10 January 2018) The board has scheduled the annual annual business meeting for: Sunday, 11 March at 10:00am. The meeting will be held at the same location as last year: Lake Shore Park, 2600 Lake Shore Road, Gilford, NH. For the Boston & Maine Railroad fans, this property was once owned by the B&M and sold lakeside cottage lots to the employees. The original ROW and Lake Shore Park depot (heavily modified) can still be easily seen. The board will be offering coffee and juice along with donuts and pastries. Please feel free to bring a baked good to share. The doors will open at 9:00 AM and the meeting will start at 10:00. The board is putting together the agenda now so please send any items that you would like to see covered. (JWM)|
|(17 December 2017) Bruce Stuart reports that long time member Bill Wheeler has passed this weekend. Bill has been a member of CVRTC since 1994. For many of our current members, they might not have had the opportunity to have met Bill or to have seen him around the engine house. But, there was a time before contending with some health issues, Bill was an absolute staple in the ranks of CVRTC. (JWM)|
|(21 & 22 October 2017) It's been a busy month on the New England Southern Railroad, as they're taking advantage of the cool fall days to get track work projects done. Our members have been helping out with pulling spikes, and sorting tie plates. On the left, Jon and Clif start cutting on the right-of-way near Manville Road, the State will be dumping the old fill in this area. On the right, Norm and Jon have finished bringing good tie plates to Canterbury, and have patrolled down to "Overlook" to keep track on the river's erosion. Thanks to everyone who has been helping out! (JWM)|
|(12 October 2017) The Thursday Gang has been out patrolling the line, and keeping it open for everyone to enjoy. To left, we see a large a tree that came down, blocking the corridor. Dave reports that the guys spent a half hour with a chain saw, cutting up the tree and clearing the trail. (JWM)|
|(30 September 2017) Despite the rainy weather, around 100 people showed up for the Golden Spike ceremony and motorcar rides along the newly completed trail section. To left, Club President Bruce Stuart shares his thoughts and praises all other groups involved. He put out a challenge to get the younger generations involved, insuring that the trail will continue to be maintained in the future. (JWM)|
|(13 September 2017) Jessie and his dad were out at Cotton Valley today with the Club's tractor, digging holes to set posts for the new guardrail for the parking area. This will protect vehicles, by keeping them away from the rails, and reducing any obstruction of maintenance equipment. The ribbon cutting for the next trail segment is scheduled for Saturday, September 30th (JWM)|
|(10 September 2017) The Club will be placing an order for T-Shirts and long sleeve denim shirts. Get in touch with Dave by email, Kot2B@comcast.net or call him at 603-431-7044 if you're interested. (JWM)|
|(10 September 2017) After the club meeting at 10:00 AM was over members headed both west and east of Fernald Station for some
trail work. Ken and Cliff moved signs and cut down low hangars while Sean pulled the deck mower and Bruce ran the sickle bar
machine to the first causeway. Ron and gang headed east and placed a temporary guard rail at Cotton Valley. They also
dropped off gauge rods at Clark Road for the final bridge work over the stream.
To the left, Bruce is taking a look back west at the wide swath that the sickle bar affords us. A short video of the mowing heading west. (JWM/SPM)
|(26 August 2017) Our track crew was blessed by good weather, as we patrolled
north from Canterbury to Lochmere. We cut back sight lines, and cleaned out
the flangways at several crossings. Our lunch stop was the Dippsy Doodle, and
we're happy to announce that the quality of the food and service has improved
back to how it was several years ago. Thanks to the seven members and guests
that made it out today!
To the left, from back to front, we have Ron, Frank, Clif, Tony and Jon's motorcars; five different Fairmont cars, spanning the ages. Frank's car is a 1930s off the Rutland RR, and Jon's is a 1986 from the S.D. Warren paper company. (JWM)
|(6 August 2017) The club enjoyed a great day of motorcaring on the Milford & Bennington Railroad. Closely associated with the host railroad, club member Steve Medlyn, organized a perfect day on the rails. The Greenfield Historical Society was very gracious offering the use of their facilities and even providing lunch for the entire group at our mid-day break. We ran the full length of track from the old Wilton Depot to near the end of track at the old Bennington Depot. Special thanks to the roads owner, Peter Leishman and the small army of flaggers who kept the consist moving through all the crossings. Thank you Steve and Pat! (SPM)|
|(July 30, 2017)
We finished off the second weekend in great style. We had good weather all
three days, and kept fairly busy, packing our cars full of excited kids.
There was some thought that we might have been creating confusion and delay, and Sir Topham Hatt came over to inspect our operations. He found that we were very useful, and operating to the highest standards.
Later Hank invited the band over, and they put on a moving concert!
Thanks for everyone's efforts this year! (JWM)
|(July 27, 2017)
The Club lost lost time member Roy Frendberg.
(Pictured on the left)
He was an avid rail enthusiast and enjoyed spending time at the Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club in Wolfeboro, NH, the Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, ME and the Edaville Railway in Carver, MA. Many friendships were made and treasured. He will be remembered for being kindhearted, caring, thoughtful and always willing to help friends, neighbors and others. "It was a good life!". (JWM)
|(July 16, 2017)
The Club lost lost time member Len Abrahamson. Lenny, as most knew him, was active not only in the CVRTC, but an Industrial Arts teacher, active with drag racing and past president of the local snowmobile club.
Sean recalls mentoring him on his first NARCOA excursion. Lenny had already operated his M9 plenty on the Wolfeboro, and "you knew in the first 100 yards that he was more than capable of operating a motorcar"
Lenny enjoyed modeling the Boston & Maine railroad, and would show up at Dave's house during the Tour de Chooch, always bringing some new locomotives to run.
He was a real likable guy, and we'll miss his easy smile and contributions to the Club. Rest in Peace!
Services will be held at Peaslee and Son Funeral Home in Wakefield NH this coming Sat at 11am for those members who would like to attend. Cards can be addressed to 30 Clark Rd, Brookfield NH, 03872 (JWM)
|(July 9, 2017) Nice day for a meeting... unless you stayed home recovering from the Crawford Notch ride the day before! Eighteen members showed up for the meeting. Gator, Jon and Jesse showed up a bit early, and went right to work, cleaning up the trash around the porta-potty, and painting and replanting the whistle post. We hope to start work on the Memorial Garden as soon as the dead pine tree can be removed. There's still a little cleanup work to be done before next month's Open House. That is Jesse's MT-19 sitting in front of Fernald Station. (JWM)|
|(July 8, 2017)
that volunteered during last year's Day out with Thomas™ events
had another great day patrolling through Crawford Notch.
We had a safe, accident-free trip with twelve cars and 25 riders. The day started off with a safety talk at eight. After our arrival at the North Conway depot, Paul Hallett thanked us for the help the CVRTC does during the Thomas weekends, finishing up with a short safety talk. Off to Fabyan with stops in Bartlett and Crawfords. On our return trip, we met the North Train at Crawfords, where we waited for it's departure before we followed it back down, meeting the Valley Train in Bartlett, and then following it to Mountain Junction, where we bent the iron, and contined to Redstone. But there's more... we continued east to the Saco River bridge, which is decked over for snowmobile use.
Thanks to all of the participants who helped make this another safe and enjoyable trip! (JWM)
|(June 25, 2017)
Six cars and nine crew members patrolled for NEGS today. We
inspected the new Sewells Falls crossing, and trimed the sight
lines. Clif showed us the progress that has been made on the
historic signal cabinet.
Picture was taken in the Canterbury Yard, one car had already been setoff and loaded up. (JWM)
|(June 24, 2017)
Another great day through the Notch was had by the CVRTC members
that volunteered during last year's Day out with Thomas™ events.
If you don't like the weather in New England... wait a couple of minutes. The weather Gods change their minds; we only had a very short light mist during seton and some rain through the Notch which was over by the time we arrived at Fayban. Other than that we had warm temperatures, sunny skies with a nice cool breeze the rest of the day.
We had a safe, accident-free trip with nine cars and 18 riders. The day started off with a safety talk at eight. After our arrival at the North Conway depot, Paul Hallett thanked us for the help the CVRTC does during the Thomas weekends, finishing up with a short safety talk. Off to Fabyan with stops in Bartlett and Crawfords. On our return trip, we met the North Train at Crawfords, where we waited for it's departure before we followed it back down, meeting the Valley Train in Bartlett, and then following it to Mountain Junction, where we bent the iron, and contined to Redstone.
Thanks to all of the participants who helped make this another safe and enjoyable trip and everybody was off the rails and headed home by 5:45. See you all on July 8th. Don't forget to check your brakes and bring release forms for each participant. (JWM)
|(June 15, 2017) Must be nice to be retired! The Thursday Gang was out for a track patrol today. Looks like five cars headed eastbound on the mainline at Cotton Valley. (JWM)|
|(June 11, 2017) Great day full of motorcar rides, great food, and a little bit of work restoring a whistle post. Photos taken by Edward. Overhead photo by Jesse. (JWM)|
|(June 5, 2017)
Bruce reports that the bridge is finished. The recent weather has rained out
on starting the Memorial Garden. Bruce and Dave will try for later this week.
Bruce spoke with contractor regarding brush chipping; no problem with holding off
for a couple of weeks until the base of the trail is established. It will be a lot
easier to move the chipper and tractor up the line utilizing the trail opposed
to negotiating the ties. We've had a chance to take a look at what we're dealing
with regarding brush. Not as much, or big as first thought. Mike said that because
of the amount of fill they're digging out of the embankments, they are going to fill
the holes with as much brush as they can, and cover it. Will be a huge help for us.
See everyone this weekend for our Family Picnic Day. (JWM)
|(May 30, 2017) The new bridge timbers are installed, and the rail has been replaced. The line is now re-opened all the way to the Miss Wakefield Diner. Use caution over the bridge, as some spikes still need to be driven. (JWM)|
|(May 27, 2017) We had three trackcars and five members and guests along for a great day on the rails. This spring NEGS expanded their trackage from Sargent Street (C17.61) to Silver Lake Road (C21.90). Today's focus was brush trimming along this section. In the picture, Sam is just finishing turning his Woodings car, while Hank waits to spin his little M9. Out of the picture to the left, Jon has already turned his MT-14. After a morning of cutting, the crew headed back to Tilton, having lunch at the Tilton House of Pizza; across the street from the former station at C18.38 (JWM)|
|(May 21, 2017) Lots of work getting done today. Repairs were made to the enginehouse roof, wallboarding and mudding progressed in the Fernald Station, and crews went east to Pike Brook to remove rail sections in advance of the State of New Hampshire rebuilding the bridge deck. New sixteen foot timbers will be installed to support the rails, and will be big enough to install guardrails, and still be wide enough for the snowmobile trail groomers. On the right, Jeff Johnson is seen here helping repair the interior walls of Fernald Station. (JWM)|
|(May 1, 2017) Don't forget that because of Mother's Day, our May meeting is held on the 3rd Sunday. This year, it will be May 21st. Looking forward to a nice spring day. Stay tuned for more information regarding the projects we'd like to get done. (JWM)|
|(April 23, 2017) Norm Yeaton represented the Club at the annual Hooksett Lions Club show. (JWM)|
|(April 22, 2017) We had our first track patrol of the year on the White Mountain Branch, running up to Tilton, and lunch at the Tilton House of Pizza. Along the way we inspected and marked ties for this summer's tie replacement project, as well inspecting the new crossing at Sewells Falls, and identify vegatation that needs to be trimmed. We also noticed that we should repaint mileposts this year. (JWM)|
|(January 2, 2017)
Happy New year!
We hope you are doing well. The 2017 Cotton Valley Membership Application
has been put on the Membership page.
Please fill out, and mail the application, along with a check for $30 to:
CVRTC Membership Secretary Dennis Heffernan PO Box 2220 York Beach, ME 03910
Send your application and dues as soon as possible but no later than February 18. Don't forget to indicate whether your application is for a single individual or for a family. Membership cards and rosters will be handed out at the annual meeting.
Please make every effort to send your application/check BEFORE the annual meeting - by February 18 at the latest - in order to allow time to print membership cards, as well as print the roster.
Thanks and we look forward to seeing you at the annual meeting in March. (DH)
|(October 12, 2016)
Hello fellow CVRTC members,|
After a lot of thought and soul searching I have decided to hang up my hat as the organizer for the Thomas events at the CSRR.
I started out ten years ago helping Wayne and Tiny running three motorcars with Thomas only being a three day event.
Today Thomas has evolved into a two, three day weekend event requiring more cars and people. When I first started we didn't have flaggers or even a fence running parallel to the tracks to keep everybody away from the track cars.
Today that is not the case, as you can just look around and see all the changes that have been made over the years in the name of safety.
While I am very proud of the job you all have done over the years, I am extremely proud of never having had an accident or having somebody get hurt. Without your help and dedication this would not have been possible, and it speaks volumes for everything that you have done over the years.
So with this said, I want to once again thank all of you who have helped me over the years. Dennis and Stacie have volunteered to take up the reins and will be running the Thomas event next year. I know you will give them all the help they need, as you had done for me. Continued success with the Thomas event and keep up our safety record.
The best to all of you.
|(October 9, 2016) CVRTC members were greeted by a dreary, overcast day at Fernald Station. After the monthly meeting, a small group headed out to patrol the Wolfeboro line, inspecting the newly constructed trail sections, and breaking for lunch at the Miss Wakefield diner. The group returned west, all the way to Wolfeboro Falls. (JWM)|
|(September 11, 2016) The club had a special visitor to the monthly club meeting this Sunday. Chris Gamache, Chief for the New Hampshire Bureau of Trails made a surprise visit at Fernald Station. Mr. Gamache had nominated our President, Bruce Stuart, for a Trail Advocacy Award. This award is given by American Trails, a national organization that works on behalf of all trail interests. The award demonstrates the national recognition of motorcars as a peer trail user among snowmobiles, hiking, horseback riding and any other means or contrivance to navigate a trail. Bruce earned this by his dedication to railroad history and focus on our recreational pursuits of riding the rails. We've worked closely with Trail Chief Gamache over the years and appreciate his inclusive efforts to keep our hobby alive in the state trail system. We were delighted with his visit on our Family Day and his consideration of CVRTC for this kind of recognition in the trails community. (SPM)|
|(August 27, 2016)
Six club members have responded for this weekends' work party. Sunday,
8am - 1pm will work for the majority of members. Members will be meeting at
Cotton Valley at 8am and installing gauge rods on the downgrade, eastward, leaving
Cotton Valley. We definitely could use some additional help that day.
Additional spike mauls and grub hoes would be a big plus. The digging won't
nearly approach the amount of effort it took to install the initial ones that
were put in two weeks ago. There are many spikes creeping upward and they
will need to be spiked back down.
This latest effort on our part will virtually get us to the 1st culvert in the wetlands that Ron and members rebuilt 6-8 years ago. At that point the trail goes beside the rail for quite some distance. The Club's interest will be as well protected as practical up to that point. There are some bridge culverts to address and one or two more sections of gauge rods to get in before mid Oct. After this year passes, the bulk and majority of work on our part will be over. Bruce says that he, as well as all our membersr will be looking forward to bringing some fun back into the mix.
Bruce can't stress enough, fluids, electrolytes and breakfast should be a high priority Sunday. Look forward to seeing all. (JWM)
|(August 14, 2016) Members held a quick meeting early Sunday morning, then headed out east of Cotton Valley to install gauge rods in the sections of the right-of-way in the marshes. Two deer could be seen at the far end, where the track disappears back into the woods. Thanks for everyone's hard work! (JWM)|
|(August 13, 2016) It was a nice day in central New Hampshire, lower temperatures and slight overcast. The crew cut several trees, keeping the line clear. Everyone was packed up and headed home before the forecasted thundershowers rolled in. The owner of the railroad extended a big thanks to the CVRTC members and their guests for their work today. (JWM)|
|(July 31, 2016) Ready. Set. GO! Dave reports a great second week up in North Conway at the Conway Scenic Railroad participating in their Day Out With Thomas. The crew lucked out with the weather and missed the heat for the most part with an hour and half delay on Saturday due to rain. For all of you who helped out this year, thanks go out to all of you in making it another successful and safe event. Pictured is the crew that helped out on Saturday. (JWM)|
|(July 24, 2016) Ready. Set. GO! We had a great first week up in North Conway at the Conway Scenic Railroad participating in their Day Out With Thomas. Come on up next week, visit with Thomas, Percy, and Sir Topham Hatt! Pictured is the crew on a bright sunny Sunday morning. (JWM)|
|(July 21, 2016) In an impromtu visit (CVRTC had a three hour notice), Senator Shaheen stopped by to speak with TRAC and CVRTC on Thursday, 21 July. The Senator wanted to know more about the trail and to see, first hand, the results of Federal RTP grant money. Bruce Stuart, CVRTC President, gave the Senator a ride out over the Lake Wentworth causeways and back. She enjoyed the ride and the scenic views from the motorcar. (SPM)|
|(July 10, 2016) Quiet morning at Fernald Station preceeding the Club's July Membership Meeting. (JWM)|
|(June 12, 2016) Great day for a meeting... Jon reported some fog and rain through Alton, but all cleared up before meeting time. After reading the President's Report, and the rest of the meeting, we adjourned our brief meeting, and members headed out to the Miss Wakefield Diner for lunch. Jessie's drone snapped a picture of the group at the east end of the line. (JWM)|
|(June 4, 2016)
As guests of the Conway Scenic Railroad, and in exchange for Club members'
efforts during last year's "Thomas the Tank Engine" event, participants were
rewarded with an excursion on the former Maine Central Railroad line through
The trackcars were set on at Redstone and went as far as Fabyans this year. A total of ten cars with 23 people made the trip. After holding a Safety Briefing at 8:00am, the group proceeded west to Mountain Junction, then backing down the former Boston & Maine trackage to the North Conway depot.
Of all of the trips Club members have made over the years up through the Notch, Dave K believe this was the best trip ever had. We had no safety issues due to the attentiveness of the whole group. We had no breakdowns (a first), and we had just gorgeous weather. While at Crawford's we were able to see climbers repelling off Elephants Head and when at the Hattie Evans homestead we saw two climbers climbing the cliffs along the tracks. Dave guesses the only negative thing about the trip was that we saw no wildlife along the tracks but they encountered many hikers hiking along the rails.
Dave hopes that everyone enjoyed the ride as much as he did, and until Thomas arrives for another Day Out With Thomas, and we all get together again, have a safe summer and happy motor caring. (JWM)
|(May 24, 2016) Sean Hurley, a reporter from New Hampshire Public Radio, came up to our May meeting and put together a short segment on the history and present day activities of the Club. In case you missed it on the radio, or just want to hear it again, visit the NHPR website. (JWM)|
|(April 30, 2016)
Five trackcars and a crew of ten... Nice day for the first work ride of
the season. The crew patrolled from Concord to Tilton, helping to get
ready for an upcoming tie project, and clearing some leaners before they
bent over far enough to impact train operations.
Thanks for everyone's hard work today! (JWM)
|(February 24, 2016)
The annual Business Meeting has been scheduled for Sunday, March 13th
at 10:00am, at Lake Shore Park (2600 Lake Shore Road, Gilford, NH)
This is the same location that we used last year. Originally a Boston & Maine Railroad property which contains the last standing water tower. The Lake Shore Park depot can be seen as well. Breakfast will be served at 9:00am.
Looking forward to see you all there... (JWM)
|(January 14, 2016)
Happy New Year! We hope you are doing well. The 2016 Cotton Valley Membership Application as been put on the Membership Page.
Please fill out and mail the application, along with a check for $30 to:
CVRTC Membership Secretary
Send your application and dues as soon as possible but no later than February 21. Don't forget to indicate whether your application is for a single individual or for a family. Membership cards and rosters will be handed out at the annual meeting. Please make every effort to send your application/check BEFORE the annual meeting - by February 21 at the latest - in order to allow time to print membership cards, as well as print the roster. Thanks and we look forward to seeing you at the annual meeting in March. (JWM)
|(November 8, 2015) The motorcar season in Wolfeboro has drawn to a close. The usual items were crossed off the list to prepare the engine house and station for winter. The sign was removed from the front of the engine house. A motion was passed to address the pine trees overhanging the Fernald Station. Two new members also joined us for the last meeting of the year. Thanks to Clif for installing a solar powered lighting system at Fernald Station. We can now fly Old Glory 24 hours a day. After the meeting a contingent of ten members proceeded toward a private crossing near Mast Landing to repair a broken rail. Roy provided the cutting torch and Bruce, our Trailmaster, provided the labor. Others pulled out some old timbers that made up the ancient crossing and new clean gravel fill was put in its place. After a few hours the gauge was brought back in and both the club and the owner of the private crossing were very pleased. (SPM)|
|(October 18, 2015) It was a frosty morning, but the sun was out and by seton time it had warmed up. Thanks to James, Clif, Ron, Frank, Tom, and Jon for coming out today. The crew patrolled the southern-most 17 miles of the White Mountain Branch, and performing some vegatation management. The crew even saw some snow during lunch... Jon is hoping for some good weather in November so he can schedule "just one more" ride this year. (JWM)|
|(October 11, 2015)
Great day for a quick meeting... and a ride out to the diner. Fall foliage
was peaking. Ron, Jon, Frank and his guests headed out to the diner.
Finding the parking lot full.. Ron and Jon headed back, while Frank and his
guests stayed for lunch. Heading back west, they met Hank and his guests.
Great fall colors, and the line was in good condition! (JWM)
|(September 26, 2015)
Great day for a joint meeting with the Boston & Maine Railroad Historical
Society. The day started with a quick introduction and Safety Briefing, then
a short ride out to Cotton Valley while the grill heated up.
After lunch the group headed out to ride the entire line. (JWM)
|(September 19, 2015) After our set-on and safety briefing given by Paul Hallett, operations manager of the Conway Scenic Railroad, we headed out on our patrol to Hazans at 8:00am. Without a doubt we had gorgeous weather on our trip, beautiful skies, a very slight breeze and warm temperatures the whole day, and let us not forget an accident free day.The picture of the group was taken at the Hattie Evans memorial on our return trip. If you every get a chance to read the book "LIFE BY THE TRACKS", it is a wonderful read about the Evans family years in the Willard house. Dave would like to thank all of you once again for making this trip possible by helping at the "Thomas the Tank Engine" and "Railfan Day" events, and to the CSRR for letting us ride the rails. See you in the spring for our second Notch ride. Regards to all. (JWM)|
|(September 5, 2015) Arthur and Jon went up to the Conway Scenic Railroad to support their Railfans Day. With the handcar, they showed off roughly 80 years of evolution. Great weather, a fun crowd, and now only two weeks until we run up through Crawford Notch. (JWM)|
|(August 29, 2015) Today was a great day for a work ride on the White Mountain Branch. The six car crew set on at West Portsmouth Street (845416A) and patrolled north, clearing sight lines at each milepost. To improve safety, by spreading the crew out (ie, less people with power equipment working in the same spot) the crew was divided into two teams, and divided up the even and odd mileposts. Another benefit is that each team got to travel two miles between work sites. (JWM)|
|(August 23, 2015) Clif and James displayed their trackcars at the Concord Model Railroad Club's 30th Annual Show. (JWM)|
|(August 9, 2015)
Good turnout of members, about 25, for today's meeting. The sky was a
little dark at first, with a drop or two of rain, but the weather turned
out to be mostly sunny. The rail-trail was fairly busy today... with at
least one lady stopping to tell us how much she appriciates our Club's
efforts to maintain the entire trail.
After the meeting, Bruce, Sean, and Jon went west with the hy-rail sickle mower; while Pete and Roy took their cars east toward the diner. The crew almost made it back with the mower, but fouled plugs on the main engine. Jon pulled it back to Fernald with his MT14.
We've got a busy month ahead of us... check the calendar for upcoming events! (JWM)
|(August 1, 2015)
Quick track patrol this morning. We pulled up alot of the creaping vines
and Concord grapes. Patrolled up to Canterbury, then ate lunch at the crew
picnic table. Due to the expected hot temperatures, we planned a short day.
From left to right, we see Tom, Jon, Frank, Pete (sitting) and David.
We've developed a very good relationship with the New England Southern Railroad; our work ethic and safety record makes us a valuable asset maintaining this State of NH owned corridor. (JWM)
|(July 26, 2015)
All went well on the second week of Thomas. Despite weather, another good crowd.
We started giving rides around 9:30 AM and ran till 4:30 PM each day. Except for lunch, all four cars ran nonstop carrying full cars of Thomas fans.
Once again, Thank you to all the people that helped out for these two weekends. (JWM)
|(July 19, 2015)
All went well on the first week of Thomas. With the CSRR running Thomas as
well as an extra Percy train this year, there seemed to be more people on
We started giving rides around 9:30 AM and ran till 4:30 PM each day. Except for lunch, all four cars ran nonstop carrying full cars of Thomas fans.
Once again, Thank you to the people that helped out this past week and to our members who will be helping out next week. (DK)
|(June 27, 2015) After setting on in Canterbury, the crew patrolled to Winnisquam, surveying the trimming that had to be done on the return trip. These very rails used to host the Allouette as it ran between Montreal and Boston as a joint B&M and CP train. In the picture, from left to right: Ron, Tom, Frank, Nancy, James, Clif, Roy and Pete. Jon is behind the camera! Picture was taken just south of the NH-3 crossing, and the Winnisquam station is to the left of the picture. (JWM)|
|(June 14, 2015) The Club held it's June meeting under sunny skies. We discussed upcoming events and work to be done on the rail cooridors. One project will be the removal of the leaning pine trees, (in the treeline, above Ron's car) which are leaning over the Fernald station. We're also working on the interior of the station. (JWM)|
|(March 8, 2015) The Club's Annual Meeting and Election of Officers will be held on Sunday March 8th at the Lake Shore Park Club House in Lake Shore Park, Gilford NH. (The address is 2600 Lake Shore Road Gilford NH 03249). Park in front of the club house or up behind the club house. Pancakes, coffee, juice, and donuts will be served, starting at 8:30 AM. (JWM)|
|(February 14, 2015) The Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club Board of Directors met at Dave Kotsonis', club treasurer, recently. The three hour meeting covered a lot of ground. Many items such as membership, trail work, grants and safety were discussed. The board also voted to renew its NARCOA Affiliate membership. The minutes will be published shortly. The traditional March meeting will be held at a new venue. Stay tuned for the announcement on the Yahoo Group or a call from Dennis, the Membership Secretary (JWM)|
|(November 22, 2014) It's with great sadness that the Cotton Valley Rail-Trail Club mourns the passing of John Rives. John was an enthusiastic member, and he and his wife Linda enjoyed volunteering during the "Thomas the Tank Engine" events at the Conway Scenic Railroad. It may be little known that John's skills at clock repair kept the station clock in North Conway ticking. (JWM)|
|(October 19, 2014) Frank, Tommy, Pete, James and Ron joined up with Jon on a brisk Fall day for a nice track patrol for the New England Southern Railroad. We cut several leaning trees, as well as cutting up some which were blocking the track. Ron and Jon both fouled plugs... but everyone made it home on their own power. Teamwork and being prepared made it a safe day for all. Weather permitting... we'll get one more track patrol in this season. (JWM)|
|(September 2014) The NARCOA Board votes to accept the Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club as an NARCOA Affiliate. (JWM)|
|(September 14, 2014) Great day for members to get together for a ride over the line and some great conversation and food. Roy captured the mood with some pictures of the event. (JWM)|
|(September 6, 2014) The club members who helped out this year at Thomas made the annual ride up through the Notch this Saturday. Except for having to change a couple of spark plugs we had no break downs and it was a very smooth ride. We also had great weather all day until we started to load our trailers for the ride home. At that point the skies opened up and we got soaked, and wouldn't you know it, as soon as the last car was loaded the rain stopped and we where treated to a gorgeous rainbow. We also did some work for the CSRR moving a very large rock that was close to the track near the Gateway. With the help of Jon's lining bar and the many hands of the male operators, we where able to get the rock moved. (JWM)|
|(August 17, 2014) Clif brought his trackcar down to Concord to promote the Club and the motorcar hobby at the 29th Annual Model Railroad Show. (JWM)|
|(August 14, 2014) This week's Thursday Gang included Clif, Don, Leroy, Russ, Sam and Harry (6 cars). Debris from Wednesday's storm was removed from Fernald to NH-16, including an 8 inch birch that had fallen on the walking path at Cotton Valley. Guests, one way to NH-16, included a State Legislator and his wife. Water extremely high and on return all four culverts were left flowing freely. Overhanging trees were also trimmed on the return trip. (JWM)|
|(August 9, 2014) Leroy took a picture of CVRTC members displaying their trackcars at the Union Station. The New Hampshire Northcoast mainline is on the other side of the station, between the station platform and the white frieght house. Clif, Sam, Leroy and Bruce helped represent the CVRTC. (JWM)|
|(July 13, 2014) Early start to the day. Members met at 6am at Fernald to start moving equipment and supplies out to Clark Road. Several trees had recently fallen and had to be cleaned up. All told, 16 members were present today, with five motorcars, tractor and chipper. After the meeting, a crew headed west to mow into Wolfeboro. (JWM)|
|(June 8, 2014) Great weather day to be out on the rails, whether it was on foot, by bike, or patroling the line by trackcar. Roughly thirty members and guests attended the meeting, and afterwards half a dozen trackcars patrolled east to the diner, surveying the next section of the trail to be completed, checking the water depths of the various beaver ponds, and cutting low hanging limbs to improve sight lines around curves. (JWM)|
|(May 24, 2014) Big thanks to Jon, Cliff, Connor, Cullen and Roy for trimming brush on Saturday. The weather cleared up for seton, and stayed sunny for most of the day while the group worked. Some brief, but heavy showers came in the afternoon, as the group headed back. To the left, Cliff took an picture after clearing out around milepost 18, and a picture of the group after crossing NH-140 and taking a break at McDonalds. (JWM)|
|(April 19, 2014) We opened the White Mountain Branch on a beautiful spring day. Despite hearing that the line was clear, we found several downed trees along the way. The large crew made short work of cleaning the winter's debris out of the flangeways. JB Mentzer snapped a picture of our group, as we travelled south back into Tilton. How many of you knew the B&M logo was still on the bridge? We had several guests along with us, learning about railroad track inspections, and getting hooked on the hobby! (JWM)|
|(March 9, 2014)
The Club's annual Business Meeting and Elections was held on Sunday, March 9th at the Corner Meetinghouse in Belmont, NH. Officers and Board members were elected as follows:
|(December 2, 2013) Sam, Clif and Leroy patrolled to the Miss Wakefield Diner today; specifically to take care of a big downed tree out past Cotton Valley Crossing. They found a few other surprises along the way including a big oak just past Bryant Road. There are some other "leaners" to be concerned about, and the crew stopped on the way back and picked up the picnic table and brought it back to the enginehouse. (JWM)|
|(November 24, 2013) Five members braved the cold weather for a day on the rails. The group patrolled all the way to C22, felling a large leaner to clear the line for a future equipment move. The strong winds brought down more trees, and five more blowdowns had to be cleared on the way back south. To the left, the group stopped at McDonalds for hot coffee and lunch! (JWM)|
|(November 10, 2013) Twenty-seven members were present at the November meeting. In the old Fernald Station, the Board of Directors held a short 30 minute meeting before the general meeting. Topics of membership and trail maintenance activity were covered. The general meeting began shortly after 10:00 AM where Bruce Stuart covered the agenda for the day. Many members were impressed with the new mower rig loaded with "Yankee Ingenuity". The machine has already been used to mow the east and west end of the line. It cuts an 18 foot wide path on the ROW with its long sickle bar. This greatly improves the sight lines for all trail users year round. The engine house was prepared for season shutdown. There will be a BOD meeting in January or February before the annual season opener meeting in March. (SPM)|
|(October 26, 2013) Five members and guests spent a crisp October day working along the White Mountain Branch. We cleared sightlines around mileposts and crossings. In the picture, the crew is working around milepost "C1", just outside Concord, and within sight of the former Page Belting company. This section of track was relocated, allowing for the development of Horseshoe Pond, and the Grapone Center. (JWM)|
|(October 13, 2013) About two dozen members and guests attended the October meeting. After a brief meeting, and updates on the trail conditions and upcoming efforts, a group of eight members headed out to patol to the diner. The sink hole was filled in, and the stop sign at Byrant Road was stood back up. A large amount of stone dust has been delivered at the end of the line, and in the process the State's end of track sign was snapped off. Be aware as you approach the end of the line that the sign is no longer there! (JWM)|
|(September 8, 2013) Food must be ready... everyone is headed toward the enginehouse to grab a hotdog, burger, or chicken sandwich. Follow that up with coleslaw, potato salad, and several desserts! Great day for a meeting, 44 members and guests attended. After lunch people headed out for a ride on the line. (JWM)|
|(August 24, 2013) Great day, and a SAFE day on the rails. From front to back, Jon, Peter, Ron and Clif did some light trimming. Here, they're picking up brush left by the State's trimmer, and improving the sight lines around MP C9, just south of Canterbury, NH. (JWM)|
|(August 11, 2013) Fernald Station; Two dozen members and guests were present for the Club's August meeting. Pictured are Ron, Jon, and Clif's trackcars as they get ready to patrol the line after the meeting. (JWM)|
|(August 10, 2013) Several members had their trackcars on display at the Union, NH station. This restored station is on the Ossipee Line, next to active trackage used by the New Hampshire Northcoast Railroad. The former freighthouse now houses an HO Scale (1/87th) layout depicting the local stations. (JWM)|
|(July 28, 2013) Great day on the New England Southern. Nine members and guests worked to cut brush in several locations. Pictured to the far left is the Merrimack River bridge after the brush was cleared from the approaches, and a group picture as the group clears the brush from the east side of the track at Boyce. We patrolled 42 miles of track, and to the delight of the guys in the open cars, the rain held off! (JWM)|
|(July 20, 2013) This was second weekend of entertaining Thomas the Tank Engine fans up at North Conway. This had to be the hottest weekend ever! In this picture, taken on Saturday, we see John, Jon, Russ and the Mahr's trackcars. Cranmore ski area is in the background! The station looks empty, Thomas must be headed down to Hussy Farm, and the other train off to Bartlett. (JWM)|
|(July 14, 2013) About a dozen members attended the July meeting, with an equal number up in North Conway supporting the Conway Scenic Railroad. After the meeting some members headed into town, while Jon and Tom headed to the diner for lunch, then trimmed mileposts on the return trip. (JWM)|
|(June 22, 2013)
The day after the Summer Soltice and the longest daylight of the year, we
hosted the longest and best attended work ride this year. Seven trackcars,
fifteen members, forty-four miles round-trip, and one meet with the southbound
NEGS train. Most importantly we had a SAFE day and got a lot of trimming done.
On behalf of New England Southern, Jon extends a big THANKS to everyone who
Dave captured the colorful group just north of the Sewells Falls crossing, just as they started working on the sight-lines. (JWM)
|(June 9, 2013)
Again, a good crew showed up for some early morning trimming and mowing on the west end,
Nearly twenty members and guests were present for the meeting, with a similar sized group up at Conway Scenic.
Roy's photo captures the group inside the enginehouse. (JWM)
|(May 26, 2013) Jessie reports that the recent rains have produced high water along the line, but not yet on the rail. He also found one tree down east of Bryant Road, and took care of several leaners. (JWM)|
|(May 25, 2013) Brief day on the rails today, after meeting at the seton location and discussing the weather we decided to chance it. We took care of the heavy trimming between MP3 and MP4, and patrolling to Sewells Falls Road and back. To the right, Jon snaps a quick picture of Pete and Clif, before moving TC-42 ahead. The weather held for the most part, with the heaviest spinkles falling as the group setoff. (JWM)|
|(May 19, 2013)
A good crew showed up for some early morning trimming on the west end,
preping the right of way for some mowing. The crew discovered a pile of
gravel partially blocking a crossing, but Colin and Conner had already
cleared enough of the pile so trackcars could get by. Thanks guys!
Twenty two members and guests were present for the meeting, including two new members. Bruce, our newly elected President, outlined his ideas for trailwork, especially thanking everyone for their efforts.
After the meeting, members headed out both to mow the west end, and patrol east. Jon, David and Pete headed for lunch at the Miss Wakefield Diner, and proactively cleared several "leaners". Due to the lack of rainfall, the beaver ponds were quite low. (JWM)
|(April 27, 2013) Today was opening day for the White Mountain Branch. Fourteen members, guests, and railroad officals patrolled the line. Several trees had come down under the weight of the winter snow, and grade crossings flangeways had to be cleared out. To the left, Jon took a shot of the crew at the Merrimack River bridge. The hopper car was left on the bridge to block snowmobilers. From right to left... Roy, Chi, Frank, Peter, Jim, Jeff, Pete, Diane, Leroy, David, Linda, Clif and Norm. To our delight, the Dipsy Doodle was open for lunch! We had a safe day on the rails, and it was great to see everyone on the rails. (JWM)|
|(April 14, 2013) Roy reports "It was overcast and cool but we had a good crowd at the meeting." Thirty-three members attended. Primary discussion was about the extention of the walking trail from Cotton Valley, east to NH-16. Gator and Deborah have made a beautiful picnic table to replace the old one out on the line. Linda donated a lawnmower that can used around the enginehouse. All the Club signs were put back up on the enginehouse, and members moved all the equipment was moved outside so the enginehouse could be given a spring cleaning. Annual maintenance work was done on the backhoe and other trail maintenance equipment. Members cleaned up leaves, and inspected rail heads and flangeways at grade crossings for sand, or any other winter snow plowing damage. Everyone was eager to get back out on the rails! (JWM)|
|(April 6, 2013) Jon reports that he swung by Mountain View and Fernald on his way from the Conway Scenic Railroad Rules Class. Spring has come, and the snow and ice are slowly receeding, revealing the ribbons of rails hidden below. The first picture is taken looking north at Mountain View, the passenger station is located just over the photographer's right shoulder. The former grain building (O.L. & C.A. White ?) still stands. This track is the former B&M Conway Branch. Next, Jon swings by Fernald, noting there is still ice and snow over the enginehouse leads. Fernald is on the former Wolfeboro Branch. Both lines are maintained by Cotton Valley members, and available for use at any time. Hopefully the warm New Hampshire days will be good for maple syrup and clearing the lines! (JWM)|
|(March 10, 2013) Roy reports that roughly 34 members attended the Annual Business Meeting. Newly elected officers are Bruce Stuart (President) and Dennis Heffernan (Membership Sec), while Leroy Tripp, Russell Hoyt and Doug Zukowski were elected as Directors. (JWM)|
|(March 10, 2013)
Roy reports that the 2013 Renewal forms are in the mail.
Dues for this year is $30.
Roy is retiring as Membership Secretary after 10 years and so will not be on the Ballot for re-election. If you are interested in being the Membership Secretary please let him know and your name will be added to the Ballot. Presently, one member is interested in the position.
As you will see in the Renewal letter Ron is retiring as President, and also there is an unfilled opening for a Director, and there could be a couple more openings depending on who we elect to fill these positions.
In the past we have almost always re-elected the present management to continue on with their operation of the club. This time we will need some new candidates to step forward and serve. If you can be one of these individuals and would like your name on the Ballot, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday March 8. (JWM)
|(Feburary 24, 2013) New Membership and Roster forms are now available. See the Membership Page to download the forms. (JWM)|
|(Feburary 19, 2013) Working on a new design for this year... same look on the front, but easier to manage behind the scenes! (JWM)|
|(Feburary 14, 2013)
Two weeks ago,
during a wind storm, the left front part of the roof was blown off the rafters
and left a large hole in the roof. The roofing material is still on the roof,
only folded up at a 90 degree angle. Bruce, Leroy, and I braved the snow this
morning and met at the engine house to nail the roof down. Bruce did all the
work, I held the ladder, and Leroy gave his moral support. The roof is fixed for
the rest of the Winter, but will have to be looked at in the Spring to make
Dave provides two pictures of the enginehouse roof, taken before the repairs were made. (JWM)
|(Feburary 7, 2013) Dave reports that he was up in Wolfeboro today and swung by the engine house. He wanted a before and after picture of all the snow. After looking at the engine house he noticed the roof didn't look right. (JWM)|
|(January 12, 2013) Jesse provides this picture of the snow softly falling on the depot at Fernald. (JWM)|
See the archives for postings from 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022
P.O. Box 417
Wolfeboro Falls, NH 03896
©2003 Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club, Inc.