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Eastern Railroad Discussion > A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.


Date: 09/13/20 07:34
A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

A major cleanup of mine waste has been ongoing at Ehrenfeld,PA near South Fork over the past few years and a new park has been created on a portion of cleaned up land.

The park was dedicated several days ago so I paid a quick visit yesterday.

The park is called "The Mainline Memorial Park" and is dedicated to veterans of the South Fork, Ehrenfeld, and Fifficktown area.

The park offers a partial view of the NS Pittsburgh Line and it also provides for parking for railfans to walk up onto a nearby road overpass to watch and photograph train action.

Pic 1...Signage at the entrance to the park.

Pics 2 and 3...A glimpse of the NS Pittsburgh Line with an empty gypsum train parked on the siding..awaiting its next loading at the Huff powerplant.

Dave W.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/20 07:36 by dwi189.








Date: 09/13/20 07:40
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

Pic 4...A flag display at the park...Benches are engraved with memorials of veterans from the area.

Pic 5...Another view...

Pic 6....Plenty of parking space.

Dave W.








Date: 09/13/20 07:48
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

In addition to this park, I took a walk West from Fifficktown toward Mineral Point on the old 'Streetcar line' roadbed which was improved into a walking/biking trail around 15 years ago.

I used to hike this path when it was a muddy Jeep trail in the early 2000's to get shots of the "Big Viaduct" at the oxbow in the Conemaugh River.

Pics 7 and 8 show the trailhead and parking...This is located a few minute drive West from the Ehrenfeld Park...Dave W



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/20 08:07 by dwi189.






Date: 09/13/20 07:53
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

Pics 9 and 10..A waterfall and memorial are a short distance in from the parking area...Dave W.








Date: 09/13/20 07:56
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

A pic of the trail and a glimpse uphill from the trail of another reclaimed and cleaned up strip mine operation..

Dave W.






Date: 09/13/20 08:00
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

For anyone that might have hiked back here in the past to shoot Big Viaduct, you will be sorely disappointed nowadays as the view has completely grown in over the past 20 years.

Perhaps some volunteers with chainsaws can remedy this...Dave W.




Date: 09/13/20 08:05
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

To sum up, The Fifficktown to Mineral Point trail no longer provides a good view of trains, but for those that enjoy walking in a quiet peaceful setting on a former Streetcar roadbed, this trail suits that just fine....It is approximately a 2 or 2.5 mile walk each way from end to end on this segment of the trail.

Another segment runs West from Mineral Point to the Portage RR Staple Bend Tunnel.

Dave Williams.



Date: 09/13/20 11:16
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: rev66vette

It sounds great! Thanks for sharing this info.



Date: 09/13/20 15:20
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: Steinzeit2

Well, let's see:
  -  it faces south, with a high hill in the background
  -  absolutely no shade, for either benches or parked cars
  -  can't see your car from the rr side of the bridge
  -  next to what looks like a sewage treatment plant

Looks like they checked most of the boxes for Municipal Railfan Park........  Another waste of taxpayer dollars, in my opinion.

SZ



Date: 09/13/20 16:08
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

Steinzeit2 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Well, let's see:
>   -  it faces south, with a high hill in the
> background
>   -  absolutely no shade, for either benches or
> parked cars
>   -  can't see your car from the rr side of the
> bridge
>   -  next to what looks like a sewage treatment
> plant
>
> Looks like they checked most of the boxes for
> Municipal Railfan Park........  Another waste of
> taxpayer dollars, in my opinion.
>
> SZ
_______________________________________________________________________________________________
The cost to create the park was minimal as the park was created as a byproduct of a 3 year multimillion dollar project to remove a huge mountain of mine tailings from an abandoned coal mine that had been polluting the Conemaugh River for years.

The space to create the park was used to stage mine cleanup equipment and materials so when that project was completed, they just put down some gravel and volunteers installed benches with donations from families and organizations.


The park is also to be used for a parking area for the 9 mile Path of the Flood bike trail that runs from Fifficktown to Mineral Point and onward to the Staple Bend Tunnel and to Franklin and Johnstown, PA.

The park was not created solely for railfans.....It also pays tribute to military veterans who lived in the South Fork area and is part of the trail system.... Train watching is just one of the benefits of the park.

That treatment plant is not a sewer plant....It is a plant that was installed 40 years ago to treat the water in the Conemaugh River which had been polluted by years of mine runoff.

My Grandfather worked in that mine all of his life and my Parents were born and raised on the other side of those tracks in that town.
Dave Williams



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/20 16:16 by dwi189.



Date: 09/14/20 12:32
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: ljs252

Thanks for the pics and info. Walked into big viaduct on that trail a couple times with my dad in the late 90's in conrail days. Sad to see the overgrowth that was a great location.

Posted from Android



Date: 09/14/20 15:09
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

ljs252 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Thanks for the pics and info. Walked into big
> viaduct on that trail a couple times with my dad
> in the late 90's in conrail days. Sad to see the
> overgrowth that was a great location.
>
> Posted from Android
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
I don't know what held the vegetation back from growing until the early 2000's before it started growing like crazy there.......Remains of steam cinders on the ground?  Effects of air pollution from the Johnstown steel mills into the 1990's?

Dave W.
 



Date: 09/15/20 06:34
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: Lackawanna484

Thanks for the visit to the trackside park.  Looks like a nice place to take a break.
 



Date: 09/15/20 14:05
Re: A new trackside park on the NS West Slope.
Author: dwi189

Lackawanna484 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Thanks for the visit to the trackside park. 
> Looks like a nice place to take a break.
>  


You're Welcome, Lackawanna ..Dave W



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