N&W Cripple Creek Extension

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Sat Nov 27 19:42:31 EST 2010

WOW!!!! Do you have anymore OLD NC branch trackcharts? Perferably Gossan branch, Reed Island br, and the Lineberry br???

I will go over to Cripple Creek in the next day or two (if I can get the time from my work) since I live about 15 minutes away, and snap some "today" shots..

I will HIGHLY document the Norma Branch as it is today, and related ruins. But be aware, I may take me a few days to get the photos online.

Feel free to contact me directly I will help out anyway I can. I know "most" of the NC branch by heart.

Also, have ya'll seen the NC Branch map on the VT site?? This was the "idea" to connect to the Cape Fear and Yadkin Valley near Lambsburg!

I link to it here..


Andy Jennings
andyj74 (AT) embarqmail (DOT) com

----- Original Message -----
From: NW Mailing List
To: NW Mailing List
Sent: Saturday, November 27, 2010 4:10 PM
Subject: Re: N&W Cripple Creek Extension

On Thu, Nov 25, 2010 at 10:21 AM, Jim wrote:


Did you notice two and possibly 3 switchbacks on the map? Now if we could find N&W track charts for that time period they would fill in the rest of the story.

Did you say "track charts"? Go to http://www.brucebharper.info/nwrwy/CrippleCreek.html for 1927 track charts for the Ivanhoe to Speedwell portion of the North Carolina Branch, including the Norma Branch. Note the change of web address, I maxed out the space available to staff in the VT filebox system, so I moved to some server space I have where I host some other web sites.

The track charts are probably second or third-generation copies of blueprints made in the early '90s when Grant Carpenter and I and some of the others in the Blacksburg bunch were chasing the last days of the North Carolina Branch and tracking some of the old branches after the line shut down. Someone had a contact in the N&W engineering department who had legitimate access to the charts to make a copy. Depending on what has been transferred to the historical society, the chart may be in a drawer somewhere in the archives. I tried to clean up the negative photocopy and convert it to a positive and sharpen it when I scanned the pages. I'll work on scanning the rest of the chart as I can.

In the meantime, the track chart at Cripple Creek shows the short piece of track that leads to the turntable shown on Dr. Randolph Chitwood's map and the branch running behind the station. It also shows the Norma Branch climbing quite a bit, with some 16-degree curves in there, with the N&W portion ending just after crossing a 127-foot bridge, at an elevation of 2,287 feet.

Grant and I did manage to make it up that way and I remember seeing the Raven Cliff furnace, but I don't remember going through Cripple Creek. I'll have to dig out my slides from our trips down that way to add to the site, to document the end of service on that line.

I'm ready for a road trip.

Bruce in Blacksburg


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