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Topics - Ben Rockney

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Bridgton & Saco River Railway / Bridgton Junction on Google Earth
« on: September 02, 2013, 01:56:27 PM »
Hi all,
I've seen quite a number of posts dating from a few years ago under the topics "Locating Bridgton Junction" or "Visited the Junction."  I too visited The Junction in mid-July with my brother. Not having done a lot of research in advance, we were able to locate the main line, the turntable pit, the foundation of the Engine House, but really had no idea of how things were once arranged there and how the raised NG main line related to the rest of the yard.

Since then, I have received from the Bridgton Historical Society a good photograph of the original B&SR RR ROW and track map dating from 1916.  (Rob C. posted a similar photograph on February 22, 2013.)  I have superimposed the track, road, and building outlines on Google Earth.  The match with the terrain today is really striking.

A .kmz file that can be opened in Google Earth can be downloaded here from the Google Earth Community server:!topic/gec-history-illustrated/Yyn8xeBjeM8

The view shows the narrow gauge main line looping around from northeast to southeast to parallel the standard gauge line where freight and passengers could be transferred.  In the yard, note the turntable pit, the single stall engine house where engines were refilled with water, and the coal shed where they were refueled.  The original path of the highway was parallel to the yard and survives today as the dirt road named "Train Junction" on Bing Maps and Garmin GPS systems.  As trains left The Junction heading north, they crossed the highway and entered a steep uphill grade through what is today a gravel pit.  That rising grade along the road can easily be viewed in Google Maps' street view.  Mike F. and Duncan M. have photos of many of these places on NERAIL but this GE file should help getting oriented.  

After our July visit to The Junction, we followed the ROW up to Bridgton and then headed over to Weeks Mill and then down to Alna where we met my granddaughter and her parents for a first visit to the WW&F.  I can't tell you how impressed I was with the work you all are doing there and am looking forward to returning with them for the Victorian Christmas.

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