Day 2: Memorial Weekend, 2009
Again the Train
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Although I'm going to chase the train today rather than ride it, I headed back to the station in Cumberland. At the east edge of Frostburg, this plane is an effective eye catcher. The propeller is turning albeit rather slowly.

I left the station a little ahead of the train and got a few pictures as it passed through the section called The Narrows. I knew that Helmstetter's Curve was reachable and thought that Brush Tunnel might be, too, but I misplaced the coordinates and road names I had worked out from maps. With the train in motion, I thought it best not to try guessing so I just stayed on MD-36 to Mount Savage. Mount Savage was a little disappointing in that there seems to be no evidence of it's former industrial might. (The first pressing of iron rails in this country occurred here.) The most interesting thing I saw was The Castle whose stone wall extends quite a ways along the road. I was confused by the combination of "Maryland History" and "Private Property" signs but found out later it's a functioning bed and breakfast.

I drove on to the Frostburg station, retrieved the tunnel and curve coordinates from the computer and waited for the train. As I drove beside the train in The Narrows, I was struck by the sound of the steam engine; loud and unlike anything in the everyday twenty-first century world. It was even louder as it climbed the steep grade to the station. I thought of trying to record it with my little voice recorder then remembered that the Panasonic camera I carried can do video with sound. So here's my second ever video which provides a hint of the train's fury but certainly isn't the same as standing on the platform when all that smoke, sound, and soot arrives.

I talked with people who had been to Brush Tunnel on the Great Allegheny Passage bike trail that actually shares the tunnel but no one I spoke with could say whether the tunnel was reachable by car. DeLorme showed Proenty Road getting very close so that's where I headed and I did find a tunnel. Just not a railroad tunnel. Then, when I started to drive through it, I suddenly found myself in the grips of sanity. I walked through it and got a picture of the road on the other side. It didn't look any worse than what I had driven to the tunnel. I believe this tunnel passes under the railroad tracks and I probably could have reached the tunnel with some climbing but I decided to forego that adventure and return to MD-36. By the way, a stream shares the tunnel with the road by flowing through that trench on the left side of the picture.

I did find the much more accessible Helmstetter's Curve and did get some pictures. Then it was back through The Narrows to the station.

I had lots of great sounding dinner recommendations and the decision would have been a lot tougher had not several been closed on Sunday. Besides being recommended by at least half a dozen people, the Crabby Pig was high on my list partially because, although I didn't know it at the time, I had met the owner yesterday. I had chatted with a fellow named Terry who was busy at a big cooker near the restaurant. I made the connection when I saw the names Terry & Susan listed on the menu as owners. All of the recommendations had been on the Crabby Pig's seafood but the crab cakes will have to wait for next visit. I went for the pulled pork special. Here's tonight's dinner yesterday.

I strolled around the canal area for a bit before calling it a day and walking back to my room in The Inn at Walnut Bottom. More on that tomorrow.

Gambill Amusements supplied the rides at the festival and they're from Ohio, too. Wonder if they're going home or on to another festival.

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