- Carolina Coastal Railway (CLNA)
Carolina Coastal Railway (CLNA) operates a 142-mile line from Raleigh to Plymouth, NC and a 17-mile line between Belhaven and Pinetown, NC, serving agricultural facilities and industries in Eastern North Carolina. Connections are made at Raleigh and Chocowinity to the East Carolina Business Unit of Norfolk Southern Railway, at Wilson and Greenville to CSX Transportation, and at Belhaven to a barge facility. The railroad
has sites available for industrial
development and transloading.
In addition, CLNA now provides the
switching services at the Port of
Morehead City, NC.
About twelve miles northeast of Washington, North Carolina is the hamlet of Pinetown. Two country stores abandoned and over-grown, a church, a few homes, and a two-stall fire station are all that marks this North Carolina town. Pinetown is also the western terminus of a seventeen-mile shortline that stretches through Acre, Terra Ceia, and Pantego to Belhaven.
Driving along the country roads here, you cannot miss the thin steel ribbons that undulate and race alongside the black-topped surface. Twice a week an engineer and a brakeman coax the vintage engine, snorting blue smoke from its nostrils, into the role of a rumbling bohemoth capable of evoking memories and imagination. Twice a week the chimes of the iron horse can be heard repeating a familiar pattern warning motorists of the giant's approach. And, twice a week the shortline delivers fully loaded hoppers and removes the empties amid the squeals of out-of-gauge curves, and the groans and cracks of over-worked sleepers. As the day ends, and after the empty cars are set out for the Class I carrier, the two-man team gingerly moves the 60 foot goliath onto a siding to sleep until awakened, sputtering, whirring, hissing and spitting, in a day or so.
by J. Stuart Connell