Gary Munsey's
Cheat River Railway

 Cheat River Railway Overview

The Cheat River is based on former Western Maryland Railway tracks in Maryland and West Virginia. The scenario for the Cheat River is set in the mid 80’s when CSX was forming and excess trackage in the CSX family of railroads were being disposed of. The railroad was created to compete for coal traffic in competition with CSX. The Cheat River main line starts in Port Covington MD and follows the Western Maryland lines west through Hagerstown, Ridgely, Westernport, Bayard, Cheat Junction and terminates at Durbin WV where the railroad interchanges with CSX. As for operation on the Cheat River, we use NCE and RailPro DCC to operate about 350 feet of mainline and about 45 feet of branchlines. There are 4 levels to the layout with some grades exceeding 4 %. To gain elevation to the upper level, the Cheat River utilizes a switchback and trains are required to use a helper if available or double the hill. The Cheat River switches a variety of customers in Cumberland and serves 5 coal loaders along the railroad. The Cheat River has 2 branchlines, one to Harrisburg via the Lurgen Sub and an 8-1/2% grade and the other to serve a large coal loader. There is one large yard that requires a 2 people, several mainline “Time Freights”, several locals and wayfreights and many coal trains. At this time and era, there are no scheduled passenger trains. We operate using train information cards, waybills and verbal authority.

Layout at a Glance:
Name Cheat River Railway
Scale HO (1-87 scale)
Size 34x22 layout, 350 ft mainline track, 45 ft branch line
Prototype Former Western Maryland Track
Locale Maryland and West Virginia
Era Mid eighties
Style Modular and shelf type benchwork. 2 Main Yards,
2 staging yards, 2 small yards for coal mine service,
5 coal loadouts, mainline switchback.
Mainline Run 350 ft mainline track
Mainline degree of curve 18 degrees
Minimum turnout #6 for mainline, #4 for yard
Maximum Grade 4% mainline, 8-1/2 % branchline
Roadbed Cork, foam and wood.
Track Code 100 flex track
Scenery Rock castings, retaining walls, foliage, 40% complete
Backdrops Blue painted Masonite with photo backdrops
Control NCE and RailPro DCC

 Host  Name City State ZIP code Time From Hotel Miles From Hotel Max # of Guest Operator Positions Friday Evening Saturday Evening
Gary Munsey Pepperell MA 01463 23 min 16 mi. 8 F. 7-10 O. 7-10

Back to Operating Session Layouts