Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club

Established in 1992
NARCOA Affiliate since 2014

LEGAL NOTICE: Operation of railway equipment, including motorcars, is governed by Federal, State and Railroad authorities. All rail property is owned by someone.  Operation of any equipment on or around railroad property is only permitted with permission of the property owner or leasor.  CVRTC will assist local, State, and Federal authorities in prosecuting illegal operators of railway equipment. 

The Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club is an association of railway motorcar enthusiasts dedicated to preserving motorcar history and right-of-way maintenance through active operation and stewardship.
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About CVRTC Safety Events Calendar Trail News Membership
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Bill Wheeler

(17 December 2017) Bruce Stuart reports that long time member Bill Wheeler has passed this weekend. Bill has been a member of CVRTC since 1994. For many of our current members, they might not have had the opportunity to have met Bill or to have seen him around the engine house. But, there was a time before contending with some health issues, Bill was an absolute staple in the ranks of CVRTC. (JWM)

New England Southern

(21 & 22 October 2017) It's been a busy month on the New England Southern Railroad, as they're taking advantage of the cool fall days to get track work projects done. Our members have been helping out with pulling spikes, and sorting tie plates. On the left, Jon and Clif start cutting on the right-of-way near Manville Road, the State will be dumping the old fill in this area. On the right, Norm and Jon have finished bringing good tie plates to Canterbury, and have patrolled down to "Overlook" to keep track on the river's erosion. Thanks to everyone who has been helping out! (JWM)

Clearing the Trail

(12 October 2017) The Thursday Gang has been out patrolling the line, and keeping it open for everyone to enjoy. To left, we see a large a tree that came down, blocking the corridor. Dave reports that the guys spent a half hour with a chain saw, cutting up the tree and clearing the trail. (JWM)

Trail Ceremony

(30 September 2017) Despite the rainy weather, around 100 people showed up for the Golden Spike ceremony and motorcar rides along the newly completed trail section. To left, Club President Bruce Stuart shares his thoughts and praises all other groups involved. He put out a challenge to get the younger generations involved, insuring that the trail will continue to be maintained in the future. (JWM)

Improvements at Cotton Valley

(13 September 2017) Jessie and his dad were out at Cotton Valley today with the Club's tractor, digging holes to set posts for the new guardrail for the parking area. This will protect vehicles, by keeping them away from the rails, and reducing any obstruction of maintenance equipment. The ribbon cutting for the next trail segment is scheduled for Saturday, September 30th (JWM)

Clothing Order

(10 September 2017) The Club will be placing an order for T-Shirts and long sleeve denim shirts. Get in touch with Dave by email, or call him at 603-431-7044 if you're interested. (JWM)

September Meeting at Fernald

(10 September 2017) After the club meeting at 10:00 AM was over members headed both west and east of Fernald Station for some trail work. Ken and Cliff moved signs and cut down low hangars while Sean pulled the deck mower and Bruce ran the sickle bar machine to the first causeway. Ron and gang headed east and placed a temporary guard rail at Cotton Valley. They also dropped off gauge rods at Clark Road for the final bridge work over the stream.

To the left, Bruce is taking a look back west at the wide swath that the sickle bar affords us. A short video of the mowing heading west. (JWM/SPM)

New England Southern

(26 August 2017) Our track crew was blessed by good weather, as we patrolled north from Canterbury to Lochmere. We cut back sight lines, and cleaned out the flangways at several crossings. Our lunch stop was the Dippsy Doodle, and we're happy to announce that the quality of the food and service has improved back to how it was several years ago. Thanks to the seven members and guests that made it out today!

To the left, from back to front, we have Ron, Frank, Clif, Tony and Jon's motorcars; five different Fairmont cars, spanning the ages. Frank's car is a 1930s off the Rutland RR, and Jon's is a 1986 from the S.D. Warren paper company. (JWM)

Open House

(13 August 2017) Great day for the Club's Open House. See you next year! (JWM)

M & B Excursion

(6 August 2017) The club enjoyed a great day of motorcaring on the Milford & Bennington Railroad. Closely associated with the host railroad, club member Steve Medlyn, organized a perfect day on the rails. The Greenfield Historical Society was very gracious offering the use of their facilities and even providing lunch for the entire group at our mid-day break. We ran the full length of track from the old Wilton Depot to near the end of track at the old Bennington Depot. Special thanks to the roads owner, Peter Leishman and the small army of flaggers who kept the consist moving through all the crossings. Thank you Steve and Pat! (SPM)

Day Out With Thomas

(July 30, 2017) We finished off the second weekend in great style. We had good weather all three days, and kept fairly busy, packing our cars full of excited kids.

There was some thought that we might have been creating confusion and delay, and Sir Topham Hatt came over to inspect our operations. He found that we were very useful, and operating to the highest standards.

Later Hank invited the band over, and they put on a moving concert!

Thanks for everyone's efforts this year! (JWM)

Roy Frendberg

(July 27, 2017) The Club lost lost time member Roy Frendberg. (Pictured on the left)

He was an avid rail enthusiast and enjoyed spending time at the Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club in Wolfeboro, NH, the Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, ME and the Edaville Railway in Carver, MA. Many friendships were made and treasured. He will be remembered for being kindhearted, caring, thoughtful and always willing to help friends, neighbors and others. "It was a good life!". (JWM)

Len Abrahamson

(July 16, 2017) The Club lost lost time member Len Abrahamson. Lenny, as most knew him, was active not only in the CVRTC, but an Industrial Arts teacher, active with drag racing and past president of the local snowmobile club.

Sean recalls mentoring him on his first NARCOA excursion. Lenny had already operated his M9 plenty on the Wolfeboro, and "you knew in the first 100 yards that he was more than capable of operating a motorcar"

Lenny enjoyed modeling the Boston & Maine railroad, and would show up at Dave's house during the Tour de Chooch, always bringing some new locomotives to run.

He was a real likable guy, and we'll miss his easy smile and contributions to the Club. Rest in Peace!

Services will be held at Peaslee and Son Funeral Home in Wakefield NH this coming Sat at 11am for those members who would like to attend. Cards can be addressed to 30 Clark Rd, Brookfield NH, 03872 (JWM)

July Meeting

(July 9, 2017) Nice day for a meeting... unless you stayed home recovering from the Crawford Notch ride the day before! Eighteen members showed up for the meeting. Gator, Jon and Jesse showed up a bit early, and went right to work, cleaning up the trash around the porta-potty, and painting and replanting the whistle post. We hope to start work on the Memorial Garden as soon as the dead pine tree can be removed. There's still a little cleanup work to be done before next month's Open House. That is Jesse's MT-19 sitting in front of Fernald Station. (JWM)

Crawford Notch

(July 8, 2017) CVRTC members that volunteered during last year's Day out with Thomas™ events had another great day patrolling through Crawford Notch.

We had a safe, accident-free trip with twelve cars and 25 riders. The day started off with a safety talk at eight. After our arrival at the North Conway depot, Paul Hallett thanked us for the help the CVRTC does during the Thomas weekends, finishing up with a short safety talk. Off to Fabyan with stops in Bartlett and Crawfords. On our return trip, we met the North Train at Crawfords, where we waited for it's departure before we followed it back down, meeting the Valley Train in Bartlett, and then following it to Mountain Junction, where we bent the iron, and contined to Redstone. But there's more... we continued east to the Saco River bridge, which is decked over for snowmobile use.

Thanks to all of the participants who helped make this another safe and enjoyable trip! (JWM)

New England Southern

(June 25, 2017) Six cars and nine crew members patrolled for NEGS today. We inspected the new Sewells Falls crossing, and trimed the sight lines. Clif showed us the progress that has been made on the historic signal cabinet.

Picture was taken in the Canterbury Yard, one car had already been setoff and loaded up. (JWM)

Crawford Notch

(June 24, 2017) Another great day through the Notch was had by the CVRTC members that volunteered during last year's Day out with Thomas™ events.

If you don't like the weather in New England... wait a couple of minutes. The weather Gods change their minds; we only had a very short light mist during seton and some rain through the Notch which was over by the time we arrived at Fayban. Other than that we had warm temperatures, sunny skies with a nice cool breeze the rest of the day.

We had a safe, accident-free trip with nine cars and 18 riders. The day started off with a safety talk at eight. After our arrival at the North Conway depot, Paul Hallett thanked us for the help the CVRTC does during the Thomas weekends, finishing up with a short safety talk. Off to Fabyan with stops in Bartlett and Crawfords. On our return trip, we met the North Train at Crawfords, where we waited for it's departure before we followed it back down, meeting the Valley Train in Bartlett, and then following it to Mountain Junction, where we bent the iron, and contined to Redstone.

Thanks to all of the participants who helped make this another safe and enjoyable trip and everybody was off the rails and headed home by 5:45. See you all on July 8th. Don't forget to check your brakes and bring release forms for each participant. (JWM)

Thursday Gang

(June 15, 2017) Must be nice to be retired! The Thursday Gang was out for a track patrol today. Looks like five cars headed eastbound on the mainline at Cotton Valley. (JWM)

June Family Day and BBQ

(June 11, 2017) Great day full of motorcar rides, great food, and a little bit of work restoring a whistle post. Photos taken by Edward. Overhead photo by Jesse. (JWM)

Trail News

(June 5, 2017) Bruce reports that the bridge is finished. The recent weather has rained out on starting the Memorial Garden. Bruce and Dave will try for later this week. Bruce spoke with contractor regarding brush chipping; no problem with holding off for a couple of weeks until the base of the trail is established. It will be a lot easier to move the chipper and tractor up the line utilizing the trail opposed to negotiating the ties. We've had a chance to take a look at what we're dealing with regarding brush. Not as much, or big as first thought. Mike said that because of the amount of fill they're digging out of the embankments, they are going to fill the holes with as much brush as they can, and cover it. Will be a huge help for us.

See everyone this weekend for our Family Picnic Day. (JWM)

Pike Brook

(May 30, 2017) The new bridge timbers are installed, and the rail has been replaced. The line is now re-opened all the way to the Miss Wakefield Diner. Use caution over the bridge, as some spikes still need to be driven. (JWM)

New England Southern

(May 27, 2017) We had three trackcars and five members and guests along for a great day on the rails. This spring NEGS expanded their trackage from Sargent Street (C17.61) to Silver Lake Road (C21.90). Today's focus was brush trimming along this section. In the picture, Sam is just finishing turning his Woodings car, while Hank waits to spin his little M9. Out of the picture to the left, Jon has already turned his MT-14. After a morning of cutting, the crew headed back to Tilton, having lunch at the Tilton House of Pizza; across the street from the former station at C18.38 (JWM)

May Meeting

(May 21, 2017) Lots of work getting done today. Repairs were made to the enginehouse roof, wallboarding and mudding progressed in the Fernald Station, and crews went east to Pike Brook to remove rail sections in advance of the State of New Hampshire rebuilding the bridge deck. New sixteen foot timbers will be installed to support the rails, and will be big enough to install guardrails, and still be wide enough for the snowmobile trail groomers. On the right, Jeff Johnson is seen here helping repair the interior walls of Fernald Station. (JWM)

May Meeting

(May 1, 2017) Don't forget that because of Mother's Day, our May meeting is held on the 3rd Sunday. This year, it will be May 21st. Looking forward to a nice spring day. Stay tuned for more information regarding the projects we'd like to get done. (JWM)

Hooksett Model Railroad Show

(April 23, 2017) Norm Yeaton represented the Club at the annual Hooksett Lions Club show. (JWM)

New England Southern

(April 22, 2017) We had our first track patrol of the year on the White Mountain Branch, running up to Tilton, and lunch at the Tilton House of Pizza. Along the way we inspected and marked ties for this summer's tie replacement project, as well inspecting the new crossing at Sewells Falls, and identify vegatation that needs to be trimmed. We also noticed that we should repaint mileposts this year. (JWM)

Happy New Year

(January 2, 2017) Happy New year! We hope you are doing well. The 2017 Cotton Valley Membership Application has been put on the Membership page.

Please fill out, and mail the application, along with a check for $30 to:

CVRTC Membership Secretary
Dennis Heffernan
PO Box 2220
York Beach, ME 03910

Send your application and dues as soon as possible but no later than February 18. Don't forget to indicate whether your application is for a single individual or for a family. Membership cards and rosters will be handed out at the annual meeting.

Please make every effort to send your application/check BEFORE the annual meeting - by February 18 at the latest - in order to allow time to print membership cards, as well as print the roster.

Thanks and we look forward to seeing you at the annual meeting in March. (DH)

See the archives for postings from 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023

Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club, Inc.
P.O. Box 417
Wolfeboro Falls, NH 03896

©2003 Cotton Valley Rail Trail Club, Inc.