The Bombay & Moira

Slightly more than one hundred years after abandonment, you'd think there would be no traces left of the B&M. You'd be right. Or at least, very close to right. To the careful observer, there are still traces. Starting in Moira, the railbed is clearly visible on the aerial photo:

Moving north, to the Russell Road, the railbed to the south has been planted with Scotch Pines. They look to be thirty to fourty years old now. They were clearly planted in rows aligned with the direction of the railbed. To the north, the railbed is a driveway:

At Best Road, the railbed is completely wooded over from the south. If you peer through the woods and brush, you can see an embankment next to the river. On the other side it is a level/straight road to the north:

Further north, on the Dow Road, the road on the railbed coming north from Best Road is gone. No trace. Full overgrowth. The embankment is visible on the ground, and from the aerial photo, but the embankment is totally disused. On the other hand, to the north, the railbed is used as a driveway for two trailers, and appears to continue to the north as a four-wheeler trail:

The four-wheeler trail continues past West Road:

The four-wheeler trail continues past Snyder Road:

I couldn't go down this jeep trail. It looked drivable, but it's posted private property:

South of Lantry Road, there is some brush which blocks a good view of the railbed. With a little peering you can see through it to a field, and a mostly open area through which the railbed ran. North of Lantry, the railbed seems to be used as a farmer's road, to access his fields:

In Bombay, the railroad joined the former Grand Trunk Railway, now CSX. There was a wye, so that trains could go east or west on the Grand Trunk, or trains from either direction on the Grand Trunk could head south on the B&M. There was also a passing siding on the Grand Trunk. No sign of it anymore, except the grade of the railbed itself. Where the wye took off to the east from the B&M is totally brushed over. Where it joins the Grand Trunk to the west is, like the passing siding, completely gone. Even the drainage ditch has been dug through the former location of the wye.

Now we come to the really interesting part. You can see, from the map (above left), where the B&M joined the Grand Trunk. AND, the remains of a switch are still there! Could it be that the junction has survived a hundred years? To answer my own question: probably not. If you look at the 1915 map (above right) carefully, you will see a short stub track at the exact same location. Very likely, they left the stub track in place for some reason. Terry Goodrich writes to say that the stub served the GLF store, which later became Bombay Agway.

Chris Granger has been researching the Ottawa Division, which included this line at one point. Mike Kudish in his book Railroads of the Adirondacks, has but these two paragraphs. If you are interested in Adirondack railbeds, you MUST purchase his book.

Russell Nelson
I have other railroad stories on my home page.
Last modified: Fri Nov 17 09:26:13 EST 2006