Canadian Pacific’s Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy
Canadian Pacific’s Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy
Canadian Pacific’s Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy

Canadian Pacific’s Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy

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Canadian Pacific’s Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy
Canadian Pacifics Rossland Subdivision by WG Kennedy
Soft Cover  stapled
26 pages
Copyright 1983
The History of the Rossland Subdivision
Canadian Pacific Railway map
No 984
No 459
No 3612
No 3626
No 404
No 6921
No 3406
No 3699
No 582
No 909
No 6944
CPR 954 with No 44
No 3676
Accident on curve at Milk Creek
Accident at Tiger
No 111
No 3647
No 3647 & 3636
No 111
No 1632
CP 437111
Canadian Pacific's Rossland Subdivision is situated in the West Kootenay District of southern British Columbia. some 250 miles due east of Vancouver. The subdivision, 21.5 miles in length, had its origin in 1896 as a three-foot gauge railway from Trail Creek Landing, at the confluence of Trail Creek and the Columbia River. up into the mountains to Rossland. A year later a standard gauge road was built to West Robson. Both, under the corporate title of the Columbia & Western Railway. were to be the foundation of the Rossland Subdivision as it is today.
This branch line leaves the Boundary Subdivision at Castlegar. 25.7 miles west of Nelson where the headquarters of the Kootenay Division is located. Following the banks and benches along the west side of the Columbia River. it runs in a southerly direction 18.7 miles to Trail, site of the Cominco Ltd. lead and zinc smelter. the largest of its kind in the world. From Trail the line turns westward to the end of track at Warfield, mile 21.5. Track beyond Warfield to Rossland. mile 29.3, was abandoned in January 1966, and lifted in July of that year, bringing to an end 70 years of rail service to that city.
The physical characteristics of the line between Trail and Rossland presented many challenges. Curves of 20 degrees and a ruling grade of 4.8% contributed to the difficulty of lifting trains through loops and switchbacks to gain elevation. Heavy winter snowfalls required frequent plowing, often hazardous through the narrow rock cuts. A rain storm after a long dry spell. combined with an accumulation on the rails of fallout from the smelter stacks, could result in a slippery rail. And every few years caterpillar infestations that swept the Trail Creek valley and denuded trees as thoroughly as a late October frost, greased rails to the extent that sand was of little help in preventing a locomotive from losing its feet. Under these conditions the skill of an engineman was of paramount importance in getting trains up and down the hill.

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