Nevada Northern Railway
Cherry Creek to Currie
White Pine and Elko Counties
By the Spring of 1905, a railroad branch called the Nevada Northern began preparations to connect Ely to the Southern Pacific line at Toano in Elko County. The main purpose of this line was to support the new copper booms taking place in the Ely area. The line originated at Toano. It ran south through Currie's Ranch (Currie) and the Steptoe Valley near Cherry Creek. It ended in Ely. By late May of 1905, reports were detailing the progress that was being made. For example, the White Pine News reported on May 25th that surveyors had already reached Borchert's Ranch. By the end of June, surveyors were completing the final leg of their survey through the Steptoe Valley. By April of 1906, President M.L. Requa of the Nevada Northern stated that the line would reach Ely by June 1st. A station was also being built at Currie's Ranch to handle freight. On April 27th, 1906, the White Pine News reported that track was within ten miles of Currie. Grading crews were also within 20 miles of Cherry Creek. By May, supplies were being received via rail at Currie's. During this same period of time, ground was being broken on multiple smelters near Ely to handle the large copper mines. Dates of track completion to Ely were also pushed back to September. A man by the name of D.C. Kennedy had operated a stage line between Wells and Ely for the previous eight years. When the Nevada Northern obtained the mail contract for this route, Kennedy was forced out business. He closed his doors on July 1st, 1906. In the middle of July, the citizens of Cherry Creek held a banquet to celebrate the rail line finally reaching their town. By September, massive celebrations were being planned for what they called "Railroad Day" at Ely. Guest speakers and political figures were to attend and deliver speeches. Some of these guests included Governor John Sparks and U.S. Senator George Nixon. Nevada Northern President S.W. Eccles was to drive the last celebratory railroad spike. Two passenger trains were to leave Cobre that day and arrive at Ely. The first train leaving Cobre at 5 a.m. The second leaving Cobre at 8 a.m. These trains arrivals were part of the celebration and were went to signify the final completion of the track. The last train was set to arrive by noon or 1 O'clock. The celebration was set to commence shortly after their arrival.
Last Trip/ Road Conditions: This is a good dirt road from south of Cherry Creek to Currie. With that said, it is out in the middle of nowhere, so go prepared. At different points along this route, you will cross long abandoned points of the track. Most of the railroad ties are now gone. Sagebrush has taken back the railbed.