Last October, I mentioned news of a possible resurrection of railroad service that was the old Saratoga and North Creek Railroad. There was a proposal by a California-based railroad company, United Rail, to take over the former SNCRR’s holdings and operate boutique train tours. That never came to fruition.
So now the next option seems to be … tear out the rails entirely, and open up a rail trail for hiking, biking, and snowmobiling.
The current plan would be to keep a line of track that runs from Remsen to Tupper Lake, while tearing up the track that runs from Hadley to North Creek, and eventually regrading those lines for foot traffic and cycling. The trail would then run all the way from Hadley to Tahawus.
There’s still a ton of logistics involved with this – removing track, regrading it, getting former rail companies to agree to abandonment, all that. But it worked with the Albany County Rail Trail, as former D&H rail lines from Albany to Voorheesville were converted into a popular walking / cycling attraction.
Here’s a link to the Upper Hudson Rail Trail site, along with their proposals.
Look, I understand the reasons behind this. Not only are tracks sitting idle, but nobody’s making any money. At least with some sort of rail trail in place, these municipalities can make some money on tourism and recreational licenses. There’s always a way to make money, isn’t there?
Just something to think about on a Sunday morning. At least I’m thinking about this, and not thinking about COVID-19. So that’s a positive.