Monthly Archives: December 2015

Miles Glacier Station

Here’s one of my recent acquisitions – an old glass plate negative clearly showing the two-story station at the Miles Glacier Bridge.  There’s no information with the negative, but the busted windows show that the building hasn’t been used recently.  The lack of overgrowth and generally good alignment of the track structure, however, suggests that this was either very near the end, where trains were infrequent, or shortly after abandonment.

USGS photos in the mid-1950s show the building gone by that point, even though the track was still present.

The other key question would be why such a large structure?  No other CR&NW structure I’ve ever seen was a fully two stories.  The Chitina depot had a second floor, but the second floor was basically the usable portion of the attic under the roof and was thus significantly smaller than the main floor.  My only guess would be that this was a combination station and section house, unlike other locations where the station building and the section house were distinct structures.  Given the notoriously deep snows in the Copper River delta, it could be cut off for weeks at a time.  Also, having everything inside a single structure would be advantageous as you wouldn’t have to dig your way through 10-15 feet of snow to the tool shed, the kitchen, etc.

If anybody has more details about the Miles Glacier station, I’d love to hear them.

Abandoned Miles Glacier Station and bridge

Layout Update – More Work at Chitina

It’s been a while since I’ve had much time to work on the layout, but I decided after a mind-twisting week of meetings in Memphis it was time to get back to the basement and do some work.

Chitina is coming together.  So far, I’ve got the mainline, the front and back sidings, the enginehouse leads, the wye, and some of the industrial track down.  I spent most of yesterday and today doing the electrical work – extending power from the main electrical panel, installing track feeders and sub-buses, putting in block detectors and the auto-reverser, and starting the installation of some of the switch machines.  The track is pretty dirty, but at least it’s now all electrically hot (and held together with more than alligator clip leads).

Pictures later this week, I hope, along with an explanation of my Chitina and how it was derived from the historic version.