1909 map showing how the NP wanted to get across the state via this proposed cutoff to shorten the distance cross-state traffic would have to take, via dipping down to the Pasco area then back up through Yakima.
Grading was completed from Ritzville to Bassett Jct, where it intersected with the Connell Northern branch. Track was laid from Bassett Jct to a little spot known as Schrag when the project was shelved. Sources say it was likely due to WW1 and it's effect on the NP. Further studies were completed up to the 1950s regarding completion of the project, including one that had the NP running over the Milwaukee from Lind to Ellensburg.
All you see today is that section of track from Bassett Jct to the lonely elevator at Schrag, now operated as needed by the Columbia Basing Railway.
thanks for posting this Dan! Do you suppose these were fairly detailed route surveys or was someone just drawing lines on a map?
I suspect this was a summary map. I've taken the time to plot these out on a DeLorme atlas, and they worked out fairly well.
fascinating - fun picturing the alternative down Frenchman Coulee
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