Ten stone arch bridges were built in Chester and Middlefield Massachusetts in 1840. A few are still in use on CSX’s Berkshire Subdivision and a couple more are standing and visible from the realigned tracks. To the people who recognize these bridges, they represent railroading in the mountains.
On the third trip to the location, I carried the gear under the bridge to shoot an eastbound from the south elevation. While most of the river is only 18 inches deep there is a large pool around the bridge and no way over the wall-like railroad grade. One drybox at a time over a downed tree. As I set up, two westbounds worked up the hill, one on one track, one on the other. “Huh….should I switch back to the other side?”
Moments after the fire burned out in my stove, the dryboxes slid into the river. Seriously? The inquisitive porcupine that disturbed them was in fact, serious. It was also serious about not leaving. A headlight and two ditch lights poked through the trees. I nearly missed the first eastbound of the night drifting down the grade. To hell with the porcupine, back to the camera!
Moments later, it started to rain. I reboxed the camera equipment on the dry sandbar under the bridge. The West Branch of the Westfield River came up and I got out.