Mile 58.5: Willimantic, Connecticut
A snippet of 4 1890s USGS quadrangles showing the HP&F tracks in the Willimantic, CT area

Willimantic has always been one of the most important sites along the Hartford, Providence, and Fishkill. Timetables from 1913 reflect this, as the New Haven Railroad issued separate documents for "Lines West of Willimantic and New London" and "Lines East of Willimantic and New London." Three major routes met along the low-lying right of way between downtown and the Willimantic River:
1.) The Central Vermont, today's New England Central RR. Still active from New London to the CN interchange at the Canadian border
2.) The Air Line, which from NY&NE days was united with the HP&F. In later years, the HP&F stations from Hartford still saw passenger service for Hartford-Boston bound trains that switched from HP&F to Air Line at Willimantic. This is abandoned in the Willimantic area and is railtrail both coming in from the southwest and leaving to the northeast.
3.) The HP&F. It enters the Willimantic area as it crosses the Shetucket as the active Providence and Worcester Willimantic Secondary. The New England Central (former Central Vermont) turns alongside it soon after it crosses and the two have several intergchanges from Shetucket Plains Road Park all the way to Bridge St, where they become a single track. After Bridge St the tracks divide again, some heading north to Canada as the New England Central, some stopping locally as the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum, and one continuing almost to the bridge at the Willimantic River, after which the rails are removed and the line is a railtrail all the way to Manchester.
Willimantic is a great place to see the HP&F in many of its current states. In particular, having a museum with an interesting vintage collection in the middle of an active railyard allows for some fun photography and allows the past and present to blend.

As always, these photos proceed as if you were heading west from Providence towards the Hudson

Click on the thumbnail for the full resolution image
A 19th Century Seat Check, from the HP&F or one of its successors
A 19th Century Seat Check, from the HP&F or one of its successors. Note that it shows Willimantic as 58.5 miles from Providence, just as the 1913 timetable that organizes this site does.
The cover of the October, 1913 NYNH&H timetable
The cover of the October, 1913 NYNH&H timetable, showing that Willimantic was a dividing point for the railroad between its eastern and western parts. Courtesy of James Mortimer.
An advertisment for the Highland Express in the October, 1913 timetable
An advertsment for a new "Highland Express" train in the October, 1913 timetable seen above. This is Highland Express/Nutmeg service, and it lasted until Hurricane Diane destroyed an Air Line bridge in 1955. Although at this time the New Haven Railroad was operating the entire HP&F railroad, they were using different parts of it differently. Waterbury to Willimantic service was connected to service north on the Air Line connecting to Franklin and Boston. The two conductor's cash fare tickets below show the HP&F stops between Waterbury and Willimantic as listed with this service, and no other HP&F stops. Courtesy of James Mortimer.
A WWI era contuctors cash fare form 32 ticket
An early 20th century New Haven Railroad conductor's cash form 32 ticket, sold between New York and New Haven. It was not used on this line, but does list station stops along it. The ticket is undated but was with a collection of similarly weathered New Haven tickets with November 26, 1918 penciled on their backs.
A 1930s or later conductor's cash ticket
A mid-20th century conductor's cash form 3 ticket, sold between New Britain and Hartford and thus an artifact linked to this branch. It is undated, but does not list Crescent Beach, Sound View, or South Lymeas local stops along the Shore Line, so based on their dates of abandonment on the Tyler City Station site, this suggests this ticket is from the 1930s or later. Note that compared to the earlier form 32 ticket above, there are more local stops listed between Waterbury and New Britain. This too suggests it was used for servce between Waterbury and Boston, with a switch from the HP&F to the Air Line at Willimantic.
A view of the Shetucket River HP&F bridge from Plains Rd
At South Windham, the Central Vermont/New England Central railroad is running on the west bank of the Shetucket, with the HP&F running on the east side. At Shetucket Plains Road Park in Windham, the HP&F crosses the river to run parallel and slightly below the other railroad. The map shows that it's actually the HP&F that continues straight- the Central Vermont actually joins the direction it has been going. The Shetucket river is swollen in this picture because of recent extreme rain (1/2024.)
A view across a baseball field at Shetucket Plains Road Park
A view across a baseball field at Shetucket Plains Road Park. The two railroads are visible on the viaduct behind the field, with the HP&F in front and lower (1/2024.)
Looking back towards Plainfield and the Shetucket River bridge.
Looking back towards Plainfield and the Shetucket River bridge. The near track is the HP&F- note the "Begin track warrant control" sign here that matches the one at the Railroad St. crossing in Plainfield (1/2024.)
Looking towards Willimantic at Shetucket Plains Rd Park
Looking towards Willimantic at Shetucket Plains Rd Park. The difference in grade is obvious- the HP&F is the closer track to the camera (1/2024.)
Approaching the Plains Rd bridge at Shetucket Plains Road Park
Approaching the Plains Rd bridge at Shetucket Plains Road Park. Note the telegraph pole (1/2024.)
The twin rail bridges over Plains Rd
The twin rail bridges over Plains Rd. The near bridge is still lower than the far one and carrys the HP&F tracks that crossed the Shetucket (1/2024.)
The twin rail bridges over Plains Rd.
The twin rail bridges over Plains Rd. The HP&F is on the left, the 28 mile marker is for the New England Central towards New London (1/2024.)
Looking southeast from Windham Mills State Heritage Park across the Willimantic River.
Looking southeast from Windham Mills State Heritage Park across the Willimantic River. The river is flowing east, and is one of the major tributaries of the Shetucket, which we last saw in Shetucket Plains Road Park. Between here and there the Natchaug River joins the Willimantic to form the Shetucket. The railroad is on the far bank and on the near bank we see part of Willimantic Linen Company Mill № 2. (1/2024.)
The former Windham Road Bridge, now the Windham Garden on the Bridge
The former Windham Road Bridge, part of Willimantic Linen Company Mill № 1, now the Windham Garden on the Bridge. A set of two train bridges is visible at the far end of the bridge. They are still at slightly different grade, but between Shetucket Plains Road Park and here they've had at least one interchange, behind Russ Road. (1/2024.)
Another view of the former Windham Road Bridge.
Another view of the former Windham Road Bridge. The southern of the twin rail bridges is seen spanning the former road and now pedestrian space (1/2024.)
Looking East on the Willimantic River from the former Windham Road Bridge. Willimantic Linen Company Mill  № 2 is on the north side of the river; the tracks are on the south side
Looking East on the Willimantic River from the former Windham Road Bridge. Willimantic Linen Company Mill  № 2 is on the north side of the river; the tracks are on the south side (1/2024.)
The northern of the two rail bridges above Windham Garden on the Bridge
The northern of the two rail bridges above Windham Garden on the Bridge (1/2024.)
The southern of the two bridges over Windham Garden on the Bridge
The southern of the two bridges over Windham Garden on the Bridge (1/2024.)
The two bridges over Windham Garden on the Bridge
The two bridges over Windham Garden on the Bridge (1/2024.)
Looking out under the northern of the two bridges at Windham Linen Company Mill № 1
Looking out under the two bridges at Windham Linen Company Mill № 1. Today the building is known as ArtSpace (1/2024.)
Looking out under the northern of the two bridges at Windham Linen Company Mill № 1
Looking out under the northern of the two bridges at Windham Linen Company Mill № 1. Today the building is known as ArtSpace (1/2024.)
Looking west along the Willimantic River from the Windham Garden on the Bridge.
Looking west along the Willimantic River from the Windham Garden on the Bridge. We can see the tracks are still on the south side of the river. They will cross over to the north side and proceed to the downtown yard and station site on a pair of trestles just west of the South Street Bridge (the one with the frogs and thread bobbins on it.) Note how swollen the river was at this time. (1/2024.)
The trestles over the Willimantic River as seen from the Willmantic Pedestrian Bridge
The trestles over the Willimantc River as seen from the Willimantic Pedestrian Bridge (1/2024.)
Another view of the trestles over the Willimantc River as seen from the Willimantic Pedestrian Bridge
Another view of the trestles over the Willimantc River as seen from the Willimantic Pedestrian Bridge (1/2024.)
One of the best ways to see the former station site at Willimantic is via the 1906 pedestrian footbridge over the depot and yard area
One of the best ways to see the former station site at Willimantic is via the 1906 pedestrian footbridge over the depot and yard area (1/2024.)
A close up of the plaque explaining the bridge's history
A close up of the plaque explaining the bridge's history (1/2024.)
A representative view from on top of the Willimantic Foot Bridge
A representative view from on top of the Willimantic Foot Bridge (1/2024.)
Looking back towards Providence and the bridges across the Willimantic River from the footbridge.
Looking back towards Providence and the bridges across the Willimantic River from the footbridge. On the southernmost track is a string of covered hoppers, one of which is identifiable as TSBY 710066 owned by the Great Lakes Central RR (Tuscola and Saginaw Bay Railway) and built 6/1980. On the adjacent track are Greenbriar Management Services gondolas AOKX 42321, 42361, and 42309, all built in 8/2022. (1/2024.)
A similar view from track level, on a day when the yard was empty
A similar view from track level, on a day when the yard was empty (1/2024.)
Another shot of the cars in the eastward facing photo above. The gondolas seem to have steel billets, wheras the covered hoppers have some sort of yellow, granular material
Another shot of the cars in the eastward facing photo above. The gondolas seem to have steel billets, wheras the covered hoppers have some sort of yellow, granular material (1/2024.)
Looking northwest from the Willimantic footbridge.
Looking northwest from the Willimantic footbridge. The most notable thing is the large derelict brick building at 760 Main Street,currently known as the Pouya building and in the hands of a developer who owns other Willimantic properties. This building appears behind the historic depot in many photos, and is a landmark for tying the past to the present. The depot would be tracksde, between the yellow dumpster and the blue Iowa Northern Railway boxcar 8022, which was built in 1/1979. Also visible are Great Lakes Central Railroad (Tuscola and Saginaw Bay Railway Co) covered hoppers 710028 and 710036, the latter of which was built 5/1980, and Wisconsin Central Gondola 54037., which was built in 8/1995. (1/2024.)
A c.1909 postcard showing the depot in front of 760 Main Street
A c.1909 postcard showing the depot. Compare the large brick building behind the depot (760 Main Street) to its derelict 2024 version in the photo above. This postcard was published by the H.C. Murray Co. of Willimantic, Conn and was their № 111. It was made in Germany and postmarked at Hop River on August 16, 1909.
The other side of the cars in the previous photo.
The other side of the cars in the photo above the postcard. This shot is looking west towards Bridge St and Hartford. It shows that although the wide yard remains at the depot site (which once served 3 railroads heading in 6 directions) by Bridge Street there is only a single track that crosses the street (1/2024.)
The site of the depot at track level
The site of the depot at track level (1/2024.)
A vintage whistle sign, west of the depot
A vintage whistle sign, west of the depot (1/2024.)
A modern mile marker, secured to a vintage New Haven concrete post style marker
A modern mile marker, secured to a vintage New Haven concrete post style marker. It reads 23, which is the milage from Plainfield along the old HP&F. This photo is looking west (1/2024.)
A distance marker for the New England Central
A nearby distance marker, apparently made from an old rail, showing the milage along the New England Central near the above HP&F mile marker. It appears to be 29 miles and some extra, which seems appropriate based on the 28 mile marker we saw in Shetucket Plains Road Park. This photo is looking west (1/2024.)
A look back east at the depot site.
A look back east at the depot site. It's obvious that the two extant railroads, the HP&F (P&W Willimantic Secondary) and the New England Central, veer right (south) at the end of the yard to cross the Willimantic River. The missing railroad, the Air Line, would have continued straight for a bit and then curved left (north) as can be seen in 1934 CT Aerial survey photograph 09089 (1/2024.)
A look at the Bridge Street crossing, facing north
A look at the Bridge Street crossing, facing north towards the Windham Town Hall. Note that it is only one track despite the size of the yards east (and as we shall see, west) of the crossing. A sign directs visitors to the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Musuem, which is a fair jaunt down the tracks to the left. Immediately left of the road is a small concrete platform that was briefly a stop on Amtrak's Montrealer in the early 1990s. (10/2023.)
The former Amtrak platform, just west of Bridge Street
The former Amtrak platform, just west of Bridge Street (10/2023.)
The former Amtrak platform, just west of Bridge Street
The very west end of the Amtrak platform. Note that the yard is widening to multiple tracks again, and the former freight office (with the mansard roof) (1/2024.)
The Willimantic Freight Office
The Willimantic Freight Office (1/2024.)
Looking back towards Bridge Street, with both the Willimantic Frieght Office and the Windham Town Hall visisble
Looking back towards Bridge Street, with both the Willimantic Freight Office and the Windham Town Hall visible. 3 gondolas are present, all owned by Connecticut Waste Processing. JAMX 1035 was built in 5/1981, JAMX 1112 was built in 8/1980, and JAMX 2024, the last one on the train, is very new, newer than 7/2022. (1/2024.)
Looking west towards the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum
Looking west towards the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum. CSX Transportation covered hopper CSXT 252583 (built 4/1981) is in focus as part of a long string of covered hoppers. Its Seaboard Coast Line heritage is evident (1/2024.)
Looking back east towards Bridge Street and Providence
Looking back east towards Bridge Street and Providence, with the string of hoppers nowhere to be seen. It's a long drive down to the museum. Note that the revenue tracks (up and left) and museum track (lower) are well separated here (1/2024.)
Looking west into the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum.
Looking west into the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum. I love this shot for both showing this section of the Willimantic railyards, but also some great museum pieces. From left to right, we have the Versailles Operator's shanty, the M6 Metro North trainer cab, and the Columbia Junction Roundhouse. We then have on its own track Reading Railroad Osgood-Bradley Coach RDG 910 (1902). On the next track right, we have a small train consisting of New Haven Terminal 0413 (General Electric, 3/1943), Conrail Caboose 19882 (7/1944) (also here,) New Haven Osgood Bradley Coach 4414 (1907), and New Haven Osgood Bradley Baggage Car NH 3841 (1906). One track over is GE 44 Ton Locomotive 0800 (12/1950). In the foreground is the operator's shack from the former Niantic River (NAN) Bridge. On the revenue tracks outside a long train of gondolas is parked, including (just out of shot, but included in the shot below) Coastal Distribution CDEX 16235 (4/2016.) (9/2023.)
A similar shot to above, but a bit more right
A similar shot to above, but a bit more right so that Coastal CDEX 16235 is visible. I love shots from this museum because of the opportuntity to get modern and vintage equipment in the same shot (9/2023.)
A look back east towards the museum gate from inside
A look back east towards the musuem gate from inside. We see at least two revenue tracks just outside the museum fence, and the far track, the NECR main, is occupied by a train containing a bulkhead flatcar JTSX 900054 (built 6/1991 Joseph Transportation,) covered hopper NAHX 503645 (owned by General Electric Rail Services,) and covered hopper AEX 21412, owned by Anderson's. In the foreground is the former operator's cabin from the Niantic River (NAN) bridge (6/2022.)
Two of the CERM's Osgood Bradley holdings, Reading RDG 910 (1902) and New Haven Baggage car NH 3841
Two of the CERM's Osgood Bradley holdings, Reading RDG 910 (1902) and New Haven Baggage car NH 3841 (1906.) One of the hoods of GE 44 ton locomotive 0800 is peaking out from behind the baggage car, and outside the museum on the revenue tracks we can see a train of centerbeam flat cars(6/2022.)
A small locomotove, a caboose, and a coach
This is the front of the small train seen in the photo from the gate. At left is New Haven Terminal 0413 (3/1943) and in the middle is Conrail caboose 19882 (7/1944.) At right is the front of New Haven Osgood Bradley coach 4414 (1907.) The plan is for the Conrail caboose to be restored to its New Haven glory days, but I do kind of like it in Conrail blue (6/2022.)
The Columbia Junction Roundhouse
Columbia Junction Roundhouse. Also visible is the turntable, as well as the noses of the Central Vermont Boxcar 43022 (1929), the Northeast Utilities 25 Ton Locomotive (1958), and the Maine Central Railbus  (6/2022.)
The nose of an FL9 and a modern centerbeam flat car
In the foreground, Connecticut Department of Transportation EMD FL9 (11/1960). In the background on the revenue tracks, Canadian National Centerbeam Flat car 626310 (11/2004) (our best guess from blurry photos.) (6/2022.)
Cab view from FL9 2023 looking east towards Providence
Cab view from FL9 2023 looking back east towards Bridge St and Providence. Prominently visible are the train of centerbeam flatcars, as well as Central Vermont Alco S-4 8081 (9/1955). (6/2022.)
A view out the cab window of the FL9
A last look at the train of centerbeam flatcars, CN 626310 (11/2004) appears to be visibile out the cab window of the FL9 (11/1960.)
Looking west towards Hartford with an S4, an FL9, and an 8600 series coach
Looking west towards Hartford, we see Central Vermont S-4 8081, CDOT FL9 2023, and New Haven 8600 Series Coach NH 8673 (PC/MBTA/Cape Cod 2569) (1947-1948). (6/2022.)
An FL9 and two 8600 series coaches
A nice shot of New Haven RR survivors: NH FL9 2057 (CDOT 2023) in the foreground, with NH 8673 (PC/MBTA/Cape Cod 2569) coach behind and in the far distance, NH Coach 8695 (PC/MBTA/Cape Cod 2591.) Also note the vintage 1937 American Bridge Co bridge in the distance past NH 8695- the remaining HP&F track towards Hartford goes under that bridge, but the New England Central Mainline, here with our train of centerbeam flatcars on it will not- it veers north to cross under Route 66 closer to the camera. (6/2022.)
A close up of an 8600 series coach
A final shot from inside the museum yard, this gives a detailed view of NH 8673 and a distant view of NH 8695, as well as the 1937 Route 66 bridge. Also just visible is SPV-2000 Metro North 293 (11/1981). (6/2022.)
Looking down on the New England Central from Route 66
Although the museum tracks are laid along the right of way to Hartford along the old HP&F, the rump remaining track that is still used as a siding in revenue service isn't connected to the yard track, it diverges from the New England Central main just before that railroad curves north to head under Route 66 in its own underpass. This photo does a decent job showing this. In the woods at far right, we can see one of the NH 8600 series coaches on the museum tracks. The gondola in the foreground has been switched onto the HP&F tracks towards Hartford at the last interchange with the New England Central, just behind the trees to the left. The railroad running towards the camera is the New England Central and this shot is taken from the overpass over it. We are looking back towards Willimantic (10/2016.)
The New England Central overpass
A photo of where I took the previous shot from, looking still towards Willimantic along the New England Central. This overpass has since been updated (10/2016.)


The next few photos are going to be along the New England Central and not the HP&F. There are two reasons for this
1.) The Willimantic Secondary being open today relies on being able to interchange with the New England Central here. So seeing where it goes next and some of the locomotive power it has is tangentially relevant
2.) One of the photos will help orient us to see where the HP&F goes next
Looking north along the New England Central
Looking north towards Storrs and Canada along the New England Central. Note there are two locomotives and a covered hopper (10/2016.)
The two locomototives visible from the overpass, as seen from Recycling Way
This shot was taken of the two locomotives from Recycling Way, the road to the recycling plant that intersects Route 66 between the HP&F and New England Central overpasses. NECR 437 is an EMD GP40-2 built in 10/1979. NECR 3039 is also a GP40-2, built in 6/1974, but the GP402-LW variant made for Canadian National. The shot does a good job showing the difference between the standard cab on NECR 437 and the Canadian comfort cab on the 3039. (10/2016)
A New England Central Train
Eight years later, New England Central GP38AC 3851 (built 4/1971) and Buffalo & Pittsburgh GP38-2 3511 (1/1972) are in the same spot with a train of covered hoppers. The 2016 shot was taken from Recyling Way, the road in the foreground. This is taken from Route 66, which shows a small vacant space between Recycling Way and the highway. The next shot will be taken from this space, directed under the 1937 overpass over the HP&F (1/2024.)
Looking towards the HP&F under the Route 66 overpass
This shot is taken from the vacant lot in the above photo. The 1937 American Bridge Company bridge carries Route 66 over the HP&F. Note the very distinctive telegraph pole- this is along the HP&F right of way and we'll see it in future photos (10/2016.)

Now we go back to looking at the HP&F right of way from up close.
Looking south and east from Route 66
Looking south and east from Route 66, a bit futher west than last  the last time we looked in this direction to where the HP&F left as a spur from the New England Central, we can see the roundhouse, a black gondola parked on what passes for the HP&F mainline at this point, and NH 8695 and Metro North 293 parked at the end of the museum track (10/2023.)
This photo shows the end of the museum trackage
Looking south and east from Route 66. This photo shows the end of the museum trackage, and a decent view of Metro North 293 and NH 8695. The track outside the museum yard follows the HP&F right of way under the Route 66 bridge and almost as far as the Willimantic River.(10/2016)
Looking back east from the Route 66 road bridge
Looking back east from the Route 66 road bridge. From background to foreground, we can see the train of covered hoppers and gondolas that NECR 3851 and BPRR 3511 are pulling along the New England Central (see photo above,) and how far away its overpass is from the HP&F's (see above for the front of that train.) We then see the empty HP&F mainline passing under this 1937 American Bridge Company bridge. We see the Metro North 293 and New Haven 8695 in their usual place at the end of the museum track. Finally, we see the distinctive telegraph pole that we could see under the overpass from the New England Central yard (1/2024.)
The historic road bridge and its builder's plaque
The historic road bridge and its builder's plaque (1/2024.)
The HP&F mainline west of Route 66
The HP&F mainline west of Route 66. Despite it being in a heavily industrial area, this little stretch seems almost bucolic, like the Valley Ralroad in Higganum. Google Earth photos shows that these tracks have been in use relatively recently, though  (1/2024.)
One final siding
One final siding. The mainline continues into the waste processing center behind Mackey's Home, Farm and Pet Supply (1/2024.)
In the junkyard behind Mackey's: the western end of active rail service on the HP&F for many miles.
In the junkyard behind Mackey's: the western end of active rail service on the HP&F for many miles. According to Google Maps, this is about 1.5-1.7miles west of the original Willimantic Depot, making this about 60 miles west from Providence and 24.5 miles west from Plainfield. Officially, the railroad is abanoned from this point west to North Main Street in Manchester (milepost 81 from Providence, about 21 miles west of here.) No train has run east of Burnside (milepost 86, 26 miles west of here) since 2017, according to information on the Connecticut Southern Railroad Facebook page (1/2024.)
The beginning of the Hop River Trail's residency on the HP&F mainline
The beginning of the Hop River Trail's residency on the HP&F mainline. This very new paved section of the Hop River Trail is reminiscent of the Washington Secondary between Cranston and Summit. We are looking east towards Providence: the junkyard behind Mackey's is visible, as is in the distance the 1937 American Bridge co bridge carrying Route 66 above the HP&F. The HP&F goes straight to that bridge, but obviously the Hop River trail curves to a parking area at Mackey's and also a junction with the Air Line trail. (1/2024.)
This 2016 photo, shot from a moving car crossing the Route 66 bridge over the Willimantic River, shows the train bridge before being rehabbed and refitted into the current trail bridge
This 2016 photo, shot from a moving car crossing the Route 66 bridge over the Willimantic River, shows the train bridge before being rehabbed and refitted into the current trail bridge. According to Jack Dougherty, a biking blogger and fan of the East Coast Greenway, the bridge was opened to the public in October, 2019. (10/2016.)
Looking south down the Willimantic river
Looking south down the Willimantic River from the train bridge back to the car bridge in the above photo (1/2024.)
Looking north up the Willimantic River
Looking north up the Willimantic River from the train bridge (1/2024.)
Looking east towards Providence on the train bridge
Looking east towards Providence on the train bridge (1/2024.)
Looking east from the west bank of the Willimantic
Looking east from the west bank of the Willimantic. One thing that makes the geography hard to understand around here is that Willimantic hasn't existed as an independent city since 1983, when it merged back into the surrounding Windham. So we have been looking at photos in Windham since the site of the South Windham depot. We are currently standing in Columbia, looking back at Windham. In addition to this confusion, the Hop River is the border between Columbia and Coventry to the north, so we'll only briefly be in Columbia (from here to the derelict Bridge 2.53) before entering our second Coventry along the HP&F, Coventry, Connecticut. Jack Dougherty's biking blog has a good map describing this. (1/2024.)
Looking west towards Manchester and Hartford at the end of the Willamantic River bridge
Looking west towards Manchester and Hartford at the end of the Willamantic River bridge (1/2024.)
Looking back east towards Willimantic and Providence
Looking back east towards Willimantic and Providence. The straightness of the right of way is very clear here- we're still pointing right at the 1937 American Bridge Co. bridge of Route 66 over the railroad. You can see it when you zoom in (1/2024.)
Looking east towards Manchester and Hartford
Looking east towards Manchester and Hartford (1/2024.)
Looking east at a small spare rail holder in Columbia
A seemingly intact spare rail holder. This is one of three I know of along the HP&F; there's one holding rails, with a sign explaining it, in Vernon. We found a partial one, along the active Willimantic Secondary, at the depot site in Baltic. My father, Bernard Dowd, who found the Baltic one after I overlooked it, remembers that these were common around the New Haven system (1/2024.)
Another look back east at the railholder
Another look back east at the railholder. Amazingly, the right of way is still so straight that the 1937 Route 66 Bridge is still visible (1/2024.)
Looking west towards Manchester and Hartford
Looking west towards Manchester and Hartford. In the foreground, there is a small cement structure, presumably used to hold a sign, signal, or crossing equipment once. Ahead there is a modern cement culvert through a viaduct carying Flanders Road. This culvert doesn't have much of a past (it was put in when the road was rebuilt) or a future (the plan is to replace it when the trail is reopened to the public)(1/2024.)
The cement structure in detail
The cement structure in detail (1/2024)
The culvert in detail
The culvert in detail. Note that access is prohibited and that the trail beyond is posted closed to the public. This is because of the derelict condition of Bridge 2.53 (1/2024.)
On top of the culvert on Flanders Road looking west towards Hartford
On top of the culvert on Flanders Road, looking west towards Hartford. Note that this section of the trail is posted closed to the public (1/2024.)
One last look from Flanders Road ad the HP&F roadbed running west
One last look from Flanders Road at the HP&F roadbed, which is running elevated and parallel to the Hop River as it emerges from behind the barn in this photo. There's about ⅓ of a mile between this shot and the derelict Bridge 2.3 over the Hop River, where the next section begins (1/2024.)

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(c) 2016-2024 Timothy M Dowd. Last Modified @ 21:55 EST on 2024-01-31
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