Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Last Days Of The Palmer Branch

Chasing the D&H up the Adirondack Branch and over to Corinth/Palmer had always been one of my favorite things to do.  When I learned in 2001 that the IP Mill in Palmer was shutting down, I knew I had to get some end-of-the-branch photos.....

A quick trip to see the Station Master at Saratoga Yard told me when the 7304 was heading North.  In the days prior to 9/11, I drove into Saratoga Yard like it was a public-roadway.  After 9/11, it was like night and day!

Instead of starting down on Daniels Road, I set up shop at The Petrified Gardens Road in Greenfield.  I've always liked this spot and wanted a shot here!

There's a lot of real estate between Petrified Gardens Road and 9N in South Corinth.  At 15 mphs I waited a Looooooonnggggggg time!

It seemed like an eternity, but here's the 7304 crossing 9N on her way to the Junction with Palmer.

I'm one of those railfans who likes to take a photo of a train after she's passed me!  By the way, the caboose was used to push out of Palmer and back onto the Adirondack Runner at the junction.  The whistle on the caboose was used for several crossings in Corinth.

Here she comes, approaching the Main Street Crossing in Corinth!  Besides this crossing, there was also a crossing on Center Street and 9N.  I've always dreamed of having a home with a railroad right between mine and a neighbors house.  Living here would have been a dream!

Taking it slow across Main Street in Corinth.  The Palmer Branch left the Adirondack Runner near MP A.54 and headed to Corinth heading South.  The switch was on a run-a-round near the old Corinth Station and after crossing the bridge over West Mountain Road she headed towards Palmer.

I loved watching trains move down Palmer Street.  I'll bet it was fun for our guys in the cab.  In the background are Corinth Central Schools.

 Notice how our caboose is at the back of the train now.  When the train gets to the junction in Corinth, it moves to the back (front?) of the train for the trip to IP at Palmer.  At this point our train enters 'The Park.'

We've arrived at our destination at International Paper and the crew prepares to switch the plant.  At this point, we are beyond the gate inside the plant.  Was I supposed to stop at the gate and the guard who was waving to me???

Our engineer, Eric Rogers waits while the old-timers 'Pipe' and 'Sparky' check their paper-work.

Here's a view from the cab.  If you weren't on your toes there was a chance of sending a car to Spier Falls via the Hudson River.  Switching inside the plant was for skilled engineers.  It looked to me like it would have made a neat switching layout!

 Heading back out via the Canyon.  When the day is done and train returns to Saratoga Springs it will be long after 6 pm.

 Here's where I ran the gate.  I didn't know where I was going, maybe that's why the guard didn't come after me!  I'm still sad that the IP Mill is gone and I can't chase a train into Palmer.  The trains lasted until October and that's when the Mill finally shut down.  It took almost 10 years, but thank God that trains can be chased up the Adirondack Runner thanks to the Saratoga and North Creek Railroad.

All photos by Gino DiCarlo, May 15th, 2001.