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The Dunderberg Railway

A cache by tadpole379 Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 8/28/2006
2 out of 5
3 out of 5

Size: Size: regular (regular)

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Geocache Description:

This cache is an ammo can hidden on Dunderberg Mountain in Harriman State Park.

This cache was issued a state park permit #BM-4, by the Bear Mountain Park office.

Parking is available close to intersection of Rt.9W/202 and Jones Point Road at the hiker's parking lot at N 41° 16.863 W 73° 57.770. From the parking lot, take either the footpath, or walk south down the road to the trailhead. Either point of entry will take you to the double-blazed Ramapo Dunderberg Trail (white with a red dot) and the Timp-Torne Trail (blue). The beginning of the trail is somewhat overgrown and there are thorn bushes, so long pants are recommended. Very shortly, the trail begins to climb. You will pass by one of the tunnels constructed as part of the Dunderberg Railway Project. When the red dot and blue trails split, follow the blue blazes up to the left. The cache is located a short distance from the trail near a scenic Hudson River vista. If you continue along the blue trail past the cache, you will find another Railway tunnel.

Following the Red dot trail will lead up an inclined grade constructed for the Railway, and will lead to another scenic vista, and another of my caches In memory of BigBill6, placed in memory of BigBill6, a local cacher who passed away on 6-10-06.

Dunderberg Railway: Because of the steep and rocky terrain, the mountain escaped development up until the spiral railway project. There were some iron mines up in the hills back of Dunderberg during the colonial period, and some logging was done, but it was still a scenic woodland in 1889 when it was discovered by Henry J Mumford. Mumford and his brother operated a similar scenic railway in Mauch Chunk, Pennsylvania, with two inclined planes and coasting runs, which had been converted from a mining railroad. The "Switch Back" railroad was a popular tourist attraction in the second half of the century, and Mumford believed that a similar attraction closer to the eastern cities would be even more popular. Dunderberg was ideal because not only was it near New York but a trip could be combined with an excursion ride on the Hudson River steamboats.

It's not known exactly what happened to the Dunderberg Spiral Railway. Construction began at multiple locations in the spring of 1890, and about a million dollars was expended on labor and materials for about a year. The amount of work that was accomplished in that time, with nothing but hand tools and muscles, is a marvel to see. Probably the investors' money ran out, and all was lost. No further work was done. The clearing around the inclined planes was still visible from a distance twenty years later, but by now, a hundred years on, trees grow on the grade and small streams have washed through. Still, as Park official Gordon J Thompson reported in 1978, "with noted exceptions, the grade is in excellent condition and could be envied by the county's operating railroads".

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Nobhg 20 srrg rnfg bs gur cvar gerr, haqre n ebpx bireunat.

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)



178 Logged Visits

Found it 169     Didn't find it 2     Write note 5     Publish Listing 1     Owner Maintenance 1     

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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum

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