Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Cape Cod RR system

Cape Cod has a rather extensive railroad system, although it's rarely used any more. It'll take me a while to get all the links, pics, and GEarth files in, but I intend to get a fairly comprehensive overview. For now:
The sole entrance is Buzzards Bay Railroad Bridge, a 544-foot vertical lift bridge - the 2nd longest in the US. Within 1/10 mile, the main line splits in two. One now-defunct line heads down to Woods Hole, while the other heads north along the canal. It services the waste-to-energy plant and heads east. At the Yarmouth Wye, one end heads south into Hyannis, where it ends just past the station. The other end heads east, then ends at Rt. 134 in South Dennis. The old bed has been converted into the Rail Trail, which runs up into Westfleet to the Marconi National Seashore, where marconi transmitted the first transatlantic radio messages. Some of the old tracks leading to Provincetown are still faintly visible.
Links:
Cape Cod Central Railroad map
Map of Old Colony Railroad from 1901
Mass. Gov. site on the Rail Trail, with history of the RR
Map of the Rail Trail
NPS guide to Marconi National Seashore

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