Scenes on the Monashee Pacific

These are the stations along the line of the Monashee Pacific, with some ideas for industries and scenery. The mileage at each station is given, along with its elevation.
6.1 Columbia Gardens (1450').
Interchange with Great Northern.

Traffic: Empties from US (fruit reefers), loads for points on the Monashee Pacific.

17.6 Trail (1365') (Smelter 1575').
Traffic: Empty hoppers north, smelter products north and south, fertilizer.

Industries: Smelter.

0.0 Castlegar (1450').
This is the divisional point between the Columbia subdivision to the south and the Arrow subdivision to the north. This is the point where the Lower Arrow Lake narrows down to the Columbia River at the High Arrow dam. The Kootenay River joins just downstream from the dam. The Monashee Mountains form a backdrop for the town. The residential and commercial part of town is both above and below the tracks south (towards Trail) of the wye. A highway overpass crosses the Nelson leg of the wye about at the switch. A spur for spotting OCS cars is located in the middle of the wye.

Railway facilities: Station in wye, minor freight yard, small passenger yard, ice house, freight/express station, engine facilities, OCS spur, section house.

Industries: Basic service industries, possibly a lumber mill.

Traffic: Paper products to the South and North, perhaps some dairy.

1.3 Robson West (1450').
Site of a large pulp mill and 2x4 factory. A car ferry leaves here for towns along Arrow Lake, including Nakusp and Arrowhead.

Railway Facilities: Car ferry slip.

Industries: Pulp mill.

8.4 Van Horne Junction (1490').
CP's Southern mainline (Crowsnest/Kettle Valley line) heads southwest and up from a junction here.

21.9 Renata (1425').
The town is built on the alluvial fans of Dog and Renata Creeks. These valleys form deep gashes in the otherwise solid backdrop of mountains. The tracks pass through an orchard. Arrow Lake is on the east side of the town.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, station, short back track section house (water tank).

Industries: Sawmill, small fruit packer, small freight house, ore loader-truck/rail transfer.

47.2 Edgewood (1460').
This town is located where Inonoaklin Creek empties into Arrow Lake. It is also at the bottom of a twenty mile, 2.2% grade. Arrow Lake on right, mountains on left, track heading into a valley. The valley is flat,but tracks climb up the left side. There are sizeable farming operations in the valley.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, station, maybe wye or turntable, express reefer track, (fuel and water), section house, back track for equalizing northbound tonnage, helper facilities.

Industries: Railway fuel track, sawmill, elevator/fertilizer shed, bulk oil dealer, wholesale warehouse, pole mill, ice plant.

61.5 Fire Valley (3200').
Between Edgewood and Fire Valley, the railway climbs the side of a steep-walled valley at times 700' higher than the valley floor. The tracks cross at least a dozen side creeks. At Fire Valley siding the tracks are 400 feet above the valley - heavily forested.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, small station, section house, railway housing, ballast pit spur.

Industries: Log loading, lead/zinc/silver mine.

83.4 Monashee Summit (3980').
Heavily forested. Very narrow pass. Top of 2.2% grade. Divisional point between Arrow Subdivision to the South, and the Echo Lake Subdivision to the North.

Railway facilities: Station, section house, railway housing, (water and fuel). Yard (6 tracks or more), turntable or wye.

Industries: Log unloading, sawmill, gravel pit.

Operations: Way freights from north and south meet to exchange cars and set off through traffic. Through freights stop to change crews (engines?), equalize tonnage, and pick up or set off traffic for way freights.

92.8 Inches (3400').
Deep in a side valley (Heckman Creek). Heavily forested.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, (water and fuel), section house, station, back track.

Industries: ore mine, log loading.

107.6 Echo Lake (2800').
The track parallels a scenic narrow mountain lake, past heavily forested hills. A small inn is between the main line and the lake shore. A small town is spreading up the hill behind the railroad station.

Railway facilities: Station, section house, water tank, railway housing, passing siding, garden tracks.

Industries: Mine, power house, factory, machine shop, team track, mill.

118.0 Blue Springs (2000').
Located on a valley meadow, there is some ranching with forested hill sides. Bottom of 8 miles of 1.9%.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, back track for equalizing eastbound tonnage, station, section house, (water).

Industries: Cattle loader, sawmill, team track, brewery.

131.2 Lumby (1640').
Located in a wide valley, the trees are mainly on the hillsides. Fairly large town. Plenty of agriculture.

Railway facilities: Passing siding, station, section house, (water).

Industries: Cattle loader, sawmills, team track, cannery, service industries, glass plant, furniture factory.

147.8 Vernon (1250').
Large city near, but not right on, Lake Okanagan. Lots of agriculture. Joint track with CP and CN. Junction with line to Kelowna (the Kelowna Subdivision).

Railway facilities: Station, major freight yard, track for business cars, engine facilities, house track, section house. A fully equipped coach yard here provides service for the passenger car fleet of the Monashee Pacific Railway. Industrial lead track to Okanagan Landing, where there is a car ferry slip. Engine and car repair shops. Ice plant (reefer servicing).

Industries: Fruit packers, meat packers, service industries, light manufacturing, warehouses, team tracks, vegetable cannery, bulk oil plant, bulk cement/batch plant, sash and door mill, furniture manufacturing.

14.7 Armstrong (via joint trackage with CN/CP) (1180').
Similar characteristics to Vernon including industry spread along mainline.

Railway facilities: Wye, passing siding, interchange with CP.

Industries: Cheese plant, feed mill, elevators, fruit packer, vegetable cannery, sawmill, plywood plant.

33.4 Kelowna (via Kelowna subdivision - branch line).
Large city approximately at the middle of Lake Okanagan. Tourism, agriculture, and forestry are the primary industries of the region. The Railway has built a yard and industrial lead tracks so that they form a return loop around much of the industrial area of the city.

Railway facilities: Station, freight yard, engine and caboose service tracks, section house, fuel and water, small passenger service facilities, ice plant for reefer servicing.

Industries: Plywood, lumber, pole mills, fruit, meat, vegetable packers, bulk oil plant, feed mill, manufacturing plants, distillery, wineries, service industries, warehousing.

EMRA Home Page | EMRA Layout Design
Last update: 2005 June 11 by