Work has started on the lower loop--- in fact much of the grading of the track base has been done--- thanks to Clee. At the current rate of progress the tack bed should be essentially in place before the winter freeze. The bed will likely settle a little after the spring thaw and should be firm and stable by late spring. A sketch of the track plan is on the right; click the thumbnails to enlarge the images. The pond will be larger than shown on the sketch.
This photo was taken from north of the driveway looking south. The tunnel under the driveway is to the left off the photo. The culvert is on the creek overflow channel that is not shown on the diagram above. The section of steel track on the right will be part of the grade crossing over the driveway.
This photo was taken about 100 feet south of the previous photo looking southwest. The left branch of the switch leads to a future truss bridge over the creek. The right branch leads to a future grade crossing and then onto a future second switch for a siding.
This is the view of left branch over the creek. The truss bridge described at the end of this section will be used for this crossing.
This is the view looking southwest from the switch. There will be grade crossing near the pieces of concrete and then a siding. The pieces of concrete will be used to stabilize the creek banks.
This photo shows where the track will travel on the west side of the pond. This is a good place for the pond in that the ground is wet here; the ground most places was dry and hard when these photos were taken.
This is the far south end of the new loop. Note that the roadbed closest to the camera will be on the existing grade. Further on fill is required as the track turns toward the north. The track will be essentially flat over the entire loop ---- probably the longest flat section on the entire railroad.
This photo looking north was taken between the new track bed and the existing track. There will be a second new bridge over the creek just to the left of the existing bridge. This second bridge will use I beam construction similar to the existing bridge. The new bridge will be shorter, narrower (single track) and about 18" lower elevation.
This photo taken from the existing bridge shows the new track bed between the two new creek crossings.
This photo taken from the existing tack bed looking to the northwest shows the new track bed and the location where the truss bridge will be erected over the creek.
This is the I beam that will be used for the creek crossing beside the existing bridge. The beam has been cut in half since the photo was taken. This bridge will be 15 feet long.
This is a prototype truss type railroad bridge.
We plan to use this 4" X 4" steel tube for our the truss bridge. After this photo was taken the steel has been cut in more manageable sections in preparation for transport to the workshop of Bruce the fabricator.
This sketch shows our truss bridge design. One difference from the prototype is that there will be no guillotine cross braces. We'll also skip the pedestrian fence --- we'll use some cables if needed.