Out of the Maw
Winter Dreamscape - Part 2
The prior Saturday I got this amazing image at State Line Tunnel: https://www.railpictures.net/photo/680266/
And then a week later I went west again to the other, and quite more famous, tunnel on a New England trunk line.
State Line is only 580 ft long and this other tunnel is 43 times longer, and much more remote and wild. Needless to say, the Hoosac needs no introduction! It is unquestionably the railroad engineering marvel of New England railroading and one of the most daunting construction enterprises of the 19th century. Construction on the 4.75 mile long bore through the Berkshires began in 1851 and the first train didn't last through until February 9, 1875. Four four decades the tunnel ranked as the longest in North America.
The tunnel served the Fitchburg Railroad and Boston and Maine for most of its life and is still owned by the B&M's direct corporate successor Pan Am railways. Well, technically now it belongs to Pan Am Southern, the joint partnership of NS and PAR that extends NS' east coast network into the New England region.
The amount of icicles present and their size hint at the amount of water that seeps through and into the tunnel. It is this water seepage that has led to the recent troubles at the other less stable west end of the tunnel about 4 1/2 miles in from this point.