The newer model caboose

Committee hopes to bring rail relics to Nakusp

The Nakusp Rail Committee works to bring vintage caboose and plow to the village

The Nakusp Rail Committee has begun its efforts to secure funding for a caboose and plow from CP Rail.

The committee was formed after a meeting on Jan. 7 to determine if there was enough interest to bring one or both pieces toNakusp.

About 30 people attended the meeting, and train buffs pointed out that while bringing in the caboose would be a good idea,getting the plow as well would be a wise decision.

“After the initial meeting, and the conversations that have gone on so far, everyone is very excited to have the plow come totown,” said Tracy Fetters, president of the Nakusp Rail Committee. “It’s very different, there are many places that have cabooses,so a lot more people are excited about the plow, but we’re working on obtaining both.”

Both pieces of equipment have either worked or are identical to the pieces that did work on the Kaslo Subdivision. The plow wasbuilt in the late 1920s or early 1930s and would have been similar to the plows used on the Kaslo Subdivision between Nakuspand Kaslo until 1988. The caboose is one of the modern day cabooses that were built in the mid-to-late 1970s for the mainlinesand then introduced to the branch lines as the older cabooses were retired. The modern day cabooses were used frequently onthe Nakusp-Kaslo subdivision for approximately 10 years until the last train in December 1988.

Bringing the caboose and plow to Nakusp is going to require different phases of operation.

“Right now, we have an application going out to Columbia Basin Trust,” said Fetters. “We’ve worked up an initial budget for themovement and placement of both pieces, and we’re waiting to hear information on that. That is phase one.”

Phase two and three, will have the committee looking at restoration and ongoing upkeep.

Costs involved in the project are for preparing an authentic-looking railbed for the units at the chosen site, and transporting theunits on low-bed trailers, loading and unloading them with a crane.

In a press release, the committee said the project would be of great benefit to Nakusp, adding another unique sight and activityfor residents and visitors to enjoy and learn from.

Nakusp’s history is based on the railway, yet as a community we do not recognize that enough and there is no exterior displayor remaining evidence of the rail history other than sections of railbed. Having those pieces on display as part of the village’sheritage will help significantly increase the knowledge of our rail history.

If all goes to plan, the committee is hoping to have the pair moved to Nakusp around the beginning of May.

 

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