9th Crossing/B163.5

9th Crossing/B163.5

9th Crossing

The 9th crossing of the Potomac River is right at the east portal of Knobley Tunnel in South Cumberland. Rt. 28 can be seen atop on the hillside as it passes over Knobley Tunnel. From that location, there were many photographs taken of Western Maryland trains westbound. You may have seen some of these in books.

The 9th crossing, like all of the river bridges west of North Branch are a 4-span D.P.G. type. The bridge had tracks over it from 1906 until they were removed in 1998 well after abandoment of the West Sub as a through mainline in May 75'. Today local citizens cross it reguraly when walking from South Cumberland to homes around Maryland Jct.

View Larger Map

The Ridgely Switcher is leaving South Cumberland on the 9th. crossing of the Potomac on June 6, 1989. consist includes two loaded gons and caboose. (photo by Brian Paulus)

In the first photo the light was bad, but the photo displays the track and tell-tale that was located just to the west of the bridge in West Virginia. The tell-tale purpose was to alert crewmen working atop freight cars of an upcoming low overhead clearence. This clearence would have been Knobley Tunnel, located directly behind me. In April 2001, the rails and crossties had just been removed. the tell-tale would later be taken down as well. A work crew just across the bridge is constructing a new power pole to service the Warrior Run Power Plant that at the time was being bulit along the WM at North Branch. (June 1996 and April 2001)

Looking east from alongside the bridge and at a WM pole that still stands. Took this shot alongside the railtrail when the leaves were off the trees. (Nov. 21, 2012)

These two photos were taken down along the bridge in West Virgina. This bridge like all of the river crossing east of here were built for double track which never came. The second photo displays the bridge number (1635) and the type and year the bridge was last painted. (April 2001)

A view of the bridge taken from the upriver side of the bridge in South Cumberland. It is still winter and the trees have not yet began to grow, hiding the WM right-of-way. At this time in 2002, the tracks were removed. (March 2002)

From the center of the WM track at the Maryland side of the bridge these two photos are looking west onto the bridge. When the first photo was takenm the tracks were still in service although rarely used. The rails were pulled up and the bridge blocked of in 2001. (4/24/93 and 4/26/01)

A familiar photo location was here, from the Maryland bank of the river. Many famous WM photos were taken from here. The most familiar that I can remember was a A-B-B-A set of F7's pulling a N&W grain train east to Hagerstown. This first photo was taken in 2001, and the tracks had already been pulled up. Previously in 1993, the tracks were still down and in service as an "industrial spur". (4/26/01 and 4/24/93)

Looking west at the bridge after completion of the rail trail. Second photo is looking east from the bridge. A part of the fill between the Potomac River bridge and the bridge over the C&0 Canal has been shaved off to make a slopping connector path to the C&0 Canal towpath. (Nov. 21, 2012)

Go West
Go East