Construction — Nelson to Proctor

Robson Wharf

Although not prepared to pay the high costs of building the railway all the way along Kootenay Lake, the company did extend its trackage eastward from Nelson to Proctor, a distance of just over 20 miles (32 km) which closed the gap considerably. From Nelson to Troup Junction at Five Mile Point, the CPR used the tracks of the Great Northern-owned Nelson & Fort Sheppard Railway which connected Nelson with Spokane, Washington. Eastward from Five Mile Point, the tracks were built along the rocky shore of Kootenay Lake. At Procter, a small yard and a new transfer slip for the railcar barges was built. The new section of railway was opened on December 6, 1900 and the barge slip was completed on January 20, 1901.

The new trackage to Procter permitted the tug and barge service to be reduced in length and made the operation considerably more efficient. As well, the tugs did not have to navigate the West Arm of Kootenay Lake which, during the winter months, could freeze over. Passenger vessels such as the Moyie and Kuskanook, operated by the British Columbia Lake & River Service , still normally ran through to the steamer wharf at Nelson so that passengers and mail could connect with passenger trains in the city. To handle the increasing traffic on the transfer service, the CPR placed a fleet of tugs in service: the Ymir, built in 1899, the Procter in 1900 and the Valhalla in 1901. The powerful tug Hosmer followed in 1909.

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