hawkinsrails.net / shortlines / wvc

West Virginia Central

Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad

The West Virginia Central Railroad was inaugurated on May 16th, 1998, during the annual Cass Scenic Railroad railfan weekend. This marked the end of several years of legal battles to save over 140 miles of abandoned CSX track stretching south through north central West Virginia, which CSX had been trying to abandon since the early 1990's when its coal traffic had dried up. Finally in 1997 the ICC allowed CSX to abandon its track below Elkins with the condition that the line's rail would be left down allowing the West Virginia State Rail Authority (WVSRA) to buy the abandoned portion between Elkins and Bergoo along with the still in service section between Elkins and Tygart Junction for six millions dollars. However, instead of operating the new West Virginia Central line itself, the WVSRA sought an outside company to manange and operate the railroad. After receiving several bids, the WVSRA decided to award the job to the Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad, a shortline railroad company owned by John and Kathy Smith. Fortunately, the D&GV is not the average railroad, in the sense they know how to get things done - and get them done right.

Northern West Virginia's Railroads

West Virginia shortline

The West Virginia Central Railroad operates a series of former Western Maryland subdivisions in the north central region of its namesake mountain state. With shops and yard in Belington, the line runs from Tygart Junction in the north through Elkins and Bowden down to Laurel Bank and Bergoo at the south end of the line. In addition to commercial freight service for a few online shippers, the railroad operates a series of excursion trains -- including the New Tygart Flyer -- using a fleet of first-generation EMD cowl and hood units. Rarest in the stable is an ex-Western Maryland BL2 branchline unit. The rail system is owned by the State of West Virginia, and interchange is with CSX at Tygart Junction.

See also our Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad tourist collection

Links / Sources