Thursday, 26 July 2012

McLeod's Crossing


Compliments of Google Maps, a satellite-view of McLeod's Crossing and the surrounding area. Those names in white are from Google.

I'm hoping this aerial-view illustration of the railway crossing (formerly CPR) of Highway 214 will provide a better perspective regarding the following images that have been recorded over the years.



This train is heading east and about to cross Highway 214 at the location that was once known locally as McLeod's Crossing. The boxcars seen on the right are passing mile board 19. The train shown is on the S-curve sag east of Spruce, the former short siding between Milan and Scotstown. (Photo: George Pitarys, November 27, 1994 )



On June 08, 2012, almost 18 years later, Frank Jolin captured this eastbound train at the same location. No Longer CP Rail, this route is now part of the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic.





On February 05, 2010, Frank Jolin captured this image of 5026 Westbound. This MM&A train is at the same location but approaching the highway crossing from the opposite direction

Here's an interesting tidbit of CPR history from 1906 concerning that very same spot where 5026 westbound was curving through almost 104 years later.




Frank Jolin also recorded this beautiful autumn scene at McLeod's Crossing on October 04, 2010. The train shown is westbound and rolling across Highway 214. The previous three photos were taken down there at the crossing. Continue following this highway over the hill and the village of Milan, Quebec, is a bit less than 5 miles ahead. If for some reason you ever happen to be on foot and on the way to Milan, then follow the railway...it's a mile shorter. In the 1960's and 70's I walked both routes more than  once.

In the early 1950's Canadian Pacific Railway had a listed station named McLeod's near mile 18.5; a scheduled passenger flag-stop when the mixed trains operated over the Megantic Subdivision.

M256 and M257 provided the 1950-51 winter-spring seasonal mixed train service between Sherbrooke and Megantic.



The Scotstown to Milan highway in early spring. During the spring thaw this road would often become impassible. My father recorded this scene in 1959 near McLeod's crossing. The photo shows the same stretch of road and top of the hill as seen in the photo above taken by Frank Jolin some 51 years later in 2010. Asphalt did not arrive here until after 1980.

The Oddblock Station Agent


Addendum: August 11, 2013


McLeod's Crossing as seen from Highway 214 early evening on July 23, 1992. The front end of the CP Rail eastbound freight is descending the sag from Spruce, however, as the cloud of exhaust smoke reveals, the locomotives are still working hard to pull the rear of the train uphill.


Early afternoon on July 23, 1992 at McLeod's Crossing. Westbound freight led by RS-18u locomotives CP1862 and 1847 had just crossed Highway 214. That day was hot. Note the open doors on 1862 to assist with cooling.


Addendum: October 02, 2017 

Between mile 18 and 19 of the former Megantic Subdivision.

Here's another amazing Frank Jolin image recorded on August 27, 2016, at McLeod's Crossing between Milan and Scotstown. Compare this scene to Frank's February 2010 winter scene of 5026 westbound at this same location.

Might be hard to imagine now while looking at this image, but in the 1960's the former CPR right of way was kept devoid of trees and brush right back to the page wire fences and a short two-rut road ran along the railway (right side here) to the former station McLeod's.




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