This is Dry Fork tunnel #1 (37.234365, -81.639281), about 470′ or so. This is looking north from the trestle over the Rift-Berwind Road and Dry Fork River in West Virginia. Bridge facing date is 1912, with a 1911 date on the trestle abutment. Pending further research, I’d say the line here dates to the late 1800s, when the coal mines began to open up. Our general theory with the lines in the area is that they blasted out the tunnels, leaving them unfinished if they were stable and ran the line over timber trestles until either the trains got heavier or the timber began to deteriorate, then they switched to the current configurations. It’s a theory.
Dry Fork tunnel #2, centered at 37.222078, -81.633671. It’s about 478′ long. 1912 date. Thanks go to Lee Stone for the picture…I was still fussing with my camera after taking the dusty slide…plus, I wasn’t interested in climbing a long fill again. Wonder why? As of this date, it doesn’t bother me at all.
This is a long one. It’s 4,688′ or so and centered at 37.152524, -81.693367, near Bandy VA. Interesting design on this portal. Since I’d just made a production of sliding on my belly down the 30′ or so embankment coming up here, I wasn’t in the mood to trudge over to the other portal to check it. You can, if you want to.
Yeah, it’s not a tunnel, but I’ve gotten interested in documenting the remaining train stations in our area. Some are pretty tarted up and some are gone. Some have character.
This one, which appears to be on the road to renovation, is in Meadowview VA. It’s pretty much standard issue train station.
The railroad came to Meadowview around 1856 and kept the community prosperous until the 1950s. Meadowview, also known as Meadow View, is near Whitetop Mountain.
We’re just off Hwy. 627 about a mile south (as el cuervo flies) of Bandy VA. This tunnel is centered at 37.128412, -81.699718. It appears to be about 501′ long. There’s a trestle a little bit past this northern portal that goes over 627, but, since I lost my notes on this journey, I don’t recall the date on the trestle. Btw, I’ve replaced both the voice recorder and the eTrex with newer models. I tried them out last Sunday as we explored the old town of Bulls Gap…first railroad there was built by slave labor in 1857. I’ll be posting it to www.unclebobstravels.com soon.