Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12-11-06, 09:40 PM   #1
Mooo
I am the Eggman
Thread Starter
 
Mooo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 696
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
riding the ghost railroads.

Not far from our house is an old railroad bridge abutment. It's back in the woods a little ways, and you can still see a couple of ties on the roadbed. Downtown, you can see a couple of vacant lots that used to be rights of way. Most of this was pulled up in the late '70's. A little research, a little imagination, and you can still see signs here and there where the right of way was: a little raised, straight line in the middle of a corn field, a strange little cut on the side of a hill, a peculiar bend in a road. Google earth helps, because you can see some straight lines where there shouldn't be any.

So my winter project, IF I get ambitious enough, is to take the old bike out and try to trace some of the railroad tracks within 10 miles from home, and take a couple of pics. I get bored with pointless riding in circles; having some thing to go see, or some reason to ride really helps with motivation. Also, winter is better than summer for this since the undergrowth is less, and you can actually see some things much better.

I'd save the in-town stuff for those days when I can just grab a half hour or the temperature is well below freezing.

Ideally, the bike would pre-date the year the track was pulled up. That won't always be possible, as there is some around here that was pulled in eighteen fiftyfive.
Mooo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-06, 11:18 PM   #2
mastershake916
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Nor~Cal
Bikes:
Posts: 1,691
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Gonna make a rail-bike?\
EDIT: pulled up, nevermind, but rail-bikes are still cool.
mastershake916 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 04:24 AM   #3
pastorbobnlnh 
Freewheel Medic
 
pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Ascending or Descending the NH Mountains NW of Concord!
Bikes: Snazzy* Schwinns, Classy Cannondales, & a Lonely '83 Santana Tandem (* Ed.)
Posts: 10,246
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Here in the NH mountains, the old railroad beds are fairly well maintained, without the tracks, by the snow mobile clubs. I hope to ride them as soon as they are snow packed on my Snow Cycle. Good luck on your expedition. Here's a picture of what I'm riding.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Snow Cycle Side 4.JPG (87.7 KB, 51 views)
__________________
Bob
Dreaming about riding in NH's summertime!

Visit my websites:
FreeWheelSpa.com orpastorbobnlnh.com
pastorbobnlnh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 05:49 AM   #4
East Hill
Lanky Lass
 
East Hill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Take a deep breath, and ask--What would Sheldon do?
Bikes: Nishiki Nut! International, Pro, Olympic 12, Sport mixte, and others too numerous to mention.
Posts: 21,514
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
That sounds like a fun idea. Mr. East Hill and I were told by one of the old-timers who lives outside the town of Rainier (on Johnson Creek Road), here in Washington, that there used to be old logging railroads where we've gone mountain biking. There is so little trace of them that we can barely see the traces, and in some cases, the tracks were overlaid by roads. But you can still trace them on Google Earth. It's like doing your own archaeology.

East Hill
__________________
___________________________________________________
TRY EMPATHY & HAVE LOVE IN YOUR HEART, PERHAPS I'LL SEE YOU ON THE ROAD...
East Hill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 07:52 AM   #5
T-Mar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 11,896
Mentioned: 27 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 162 Post(s)
The old rail beds in my area have been a used as recreational trails for over twenty years. They are great for casual riders and a historical perspective, but they get boring pretty quick, as any grades are very shallow and the curves very gradual.
T-Mar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 08:07 AM   #6
Rusty Valiant
Traffic Frightener.
 
Rusty Valiant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Ottawa
Bikes:
Posts: 146
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Great Idea!
One of my big rides I've planned for when the snow melts is along the trans Canada trail to my Grandparents' cottage. The section between there and Ottawa is a part of the old CP rail line that was torn up. There's some great old finds along there too, given that the rail access ceased years ago and buildings were abandoned. There's a really neat one room schoolhouse just sitting in the woods beside it.
Looking forward to pictures.
Rusty Valiant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 12:43 PM   #7
tolfan
Novist senior member
 
tolfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Amish Country
Bikes: have about 30 bikes right now
Posts: 1,519
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
cool idea. here in lancaster there is the cow highway you've given me the idea to ride it.
tolfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 08:07 PM   #8
Mooo
I am the Eggman
Thread Starter
 
Mooo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 696
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Mar
The old rail beds in my area have been a used as recreational trails for over twenty years. They are great for casual riders and a historical perspective, but they get boring pretty quick, as any grades are very shallow and the curves very gradual.
Ah, but those are easy to find. We're talking about hidden stuff. Like geocaching.
Part of the fun is in finding some sign that the track was there. An 8' paved or gravel path is fairly easy to find.
The other part is getting there on a bike that was built before the track was pulled up.
Mooo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 09:32 PM   #9
seely 
The Rabbi
 
seely's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 5,087
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
That sounds like a lot of fun! We used to have a house in the DEEP south portion of IL, and there were miles and miles of 19th and early 20th century railbeds, many still had bridges and a gravel topcoat. In fact, our lot had one of the original 20th century gravel roads running through it you could still faintly see. I always wanted to explore those railbeds. Unforunately, the only ones around here are so torn up they are impassable or they have been developed into a doublewide-stroller/rollerblader path. Enjoy it and know I'm envious!
__________________
commuter turned bike mechanic turned commuter (also a Velocity USA employee, but this is my personal account)
seely is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 09:37 PM   #10
intron
Senior Member
 
intron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 309
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seely
Bikeforums misses you, sydney.
Jack of all trades, master of none.
intron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-06, 09:44 PM   #11
seely 
The Rabbi
 
seely's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 5,087
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh, the Jack of all trades is a reference to me... I'm the do-all guy at the bike shop, but I'm not particularly great at anything. But yeah, I do miss Sydney's harsh wit.
__________________
commuter turned bike mechanic turned commuter (also a Velocity USA employee, but this is my personal account)
seely is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-06, 01:11 PM   #12
Mooo
I am the Eggman
Thread Starter
 
Mooo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 696
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Here goes...
#1: the former PRR bridge over the Flat Rock River. Before it was the Pennsylvania it was the Madison & Indianapolis, the first railroad in the state. In the background, not really visible, are the foundation bits for the former interurban railroad that ran to Indianapolis.


#2:
The interurban bridge abutment from within what is now a well groomed neighborhood. The track used to run through this yard.
Mooo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-06, 02:21 PM   #13
rmikkelsen
Senior Member
 
rmikkelsen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Plaistow, NH
Bikes: '78 Chris Kvale, '87 Paramount
Posts: 460
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
http://www.makezine.com/blog/archive...elocipede.html

"The wheels have rubber bands 3 ins. wide and 3-16 in. thick on the tread, which make the machine run easily without jar, and also without noise, so that the rider can catch the sound of approaching trains."

At least approaching trains won't be a hazard for you!
rmikkelsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:04 PM.