Members of the Hudson Valley Railroad Society model in many
have enthusiasts who model in N, HO, and O gauges. The former baggage
room has a number of small N gauge layouts.
Another major feature of the Hyde Park Station is our large HO
layout, located in the upper level above the former baggage room. We
can run multiple DCC-controlled
locomotives. The layout features a rail yard, bridges, tunnels, two
levels of running, and realistic buildings from the steam era to
When the Hudson Valley Railroad Society started, members built a two-section portable layout. When the HVRRS moved into the Hyde Park Station in 1975, those sections were used as part of the HO layout. The layout was expanded to run all the way around the walls. It was built to be a block-controlled layout with a large yard in the lower section. A separate trolley layout was constructed at the far end.
At the turn of the century, we installed our first DCC system. The system began to become unworkable. From 2003 to 2005, we rebuilt much of the layout. We ripped out the trolley layout and much of the sections opposite the original pre-Hyde Park Station layout. We also replaced the electrical system. The new DCC system now runs all trains. Small lights illuminate the tunnels. Many switches that had been electrified are now switched by hand, which actually make operation a more sure thing.
The upper level features New York, New Haven and Hartford trains. A replica New Haven yard is based on the CNE's Smith Street yard in the City of Poughkeepsie. Details include buildings that model Poughkeepsie-area industries; trackside service structures; train sheds; parks, streets and vehicles, and realistic trees and ground cover.
We are now able to run 3 trains at a time on 3 non-intersecting loops, all controlled by the DCC control system. New buildings are also in place, including several train stations, a roundhouse, and industries on service sidings. The Poughkeepsie Train Station is modeled on the lower section, which features New York Central trains.
We are running the most recent DCC-controlled locomotives, which include realistic sound effects. Both steam and diesel locomotives run freight and passenger trains around our layout. Jeff Armstrong has assembled a wonderfully detailed circus train. Look for the elephants!
A favorite feature of our HO layout is our two traincams. These working color video camera systems allows you to see the layout from the tracks, just like an HO-sized engineer running down the tracks. These are a favorite of our visitors. As the train goes around, due to its going around the outside of the room, the traincam almost always shows scenery and backdrops. Our backdrops feature Hudson Valley scenery. When a traincam goes through a bridge or tunnel, you see the girders and the tunnel walls on either side. (What is hiding in the tunnel? Come and see!)
Hudson Valley Railroad Society, P.O. Box 135, Hyde Park NY 12538