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Virgina & truckee right of way

Known as the "Silver Queen of the shortlines", The Virginia & Truckee Railroad operated their own narrow gauge subsidiary: the Carson and Colorado. Additionally the railroad and its officers would be an influence to many narrow gauge and shortline railroads throughout Nevada and California.

Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby elminero67 » Mon Dec 24, 2012 3:24 pm

Has anyone here done much exploring along the V & T right of way? Im hoping to spend a couple of days hiking/walking/mountain biking in the area and know very little other than what I saw when I was fighting fires in the area back in the day.
Specifically Im looking to find original retaining walls.
Thanks, and happy holidays,
Duane
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Re: Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby Andrew Brandon » Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:30 pm

Duane,

Most of the ROW I explored as a kid is now under the rebuilt line. I can suggest 3 places to explore the ROW however:


Carson River Canyon - You should be able to access this around where the line is rebuilding. However, you will not be able to come down Highlands Drive, I believe it is closed off. You'll have to take Kit Kat Drive just past the Kit Kat Ranch and get on the dirt road which will lead you down to the river area. You'll be able to see this on Google Earth easy enough. You should be able to get back on the ROW near Eureka Siding from there. It is also worth exploring the Eureka Mill RR, the same dirt road will take you down to that grade.


Lakeview grade out of Carson - You can head out Combs Canyon Road to pick up the V&T Rail-Trail at Murphy Drive. I am not sure if this is closed to vehicle traffic or not.


Canyon on the north edge of the Washoe Valley - As you come down Old 395 (Now 430) southbound and enter the Washoe Valley. As soon as you hit the flat of the valley, there is a turn off to your right, this is near where the ROW crossed the highway.
That location is visible, as it the remains of a trestle, here

There is a Google Earth kmz for the V&T out there somewhere, but I have forgotten where exactly.
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Re: Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby elminero67 » Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:32 pm

Thanks Andrew. Have you been to any of the stamp mill ruins along the Carson?
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Re: Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby Andrew Brandon » Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:56 am

I went down and visited the remains of the Santiago once with my grandfather back when I was about 14, but not the others. I am really interested in exploring the proposed "Yerington" mill and more of the Empire Mill remains on my next trip out that way. I have also not explored the Silver Springs Branch either, but that too is on my list.

In fact, as much as I am ashamed to admit it, I've not walked the Lakeview grade or much of the Washoe Valley either. Most of my hikes were around Virginia/Gold Hill because I was on foot in those days.
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Re: Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby Curtis Reid » Thu Jan 03, 2013 3:50 pm

I've done the Carson River drive a couple of times now - though none since they've started the reconstruction work. As I recall, there isn't much of the mills left. There is the foundation of Yerrington's smelter, some wood remnants of the Eureka Mill and Santiago ore slides, and a stone vault-like building built into the hill around the (I think) Merrimac.
There were several retaining walls below the roadbed, and at least one culvert. And, of course, the bridge made out of two turntables.
I'd love to explore the Eureka Mill site and roadbed next time I'm in town (probably October), and am game for trying as much of the Carson River Canyon as is still accessible. With any luck I can bring my pickup this time instead of the minivan!
The fire through Washoe Canyon last year destroyed the remaining bridge woodwork there, but there may still be some abutments. I think the bridge south of Franktown still exists.
I believe the Lakeview section is pedestrian / bike only; no motorized traffic.

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Re: Virgina & truckee right of way

Postby John Coker » Sun Apr 21, 2013 12:42 pm

Hey, I patronized the Kit Kat Ranch 42 years ago, on a dare. Another long story but I won the bet. Locals call it the "Riding Academy".
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