About a half mile west of the junction of Noland and Colbern Roads is a turn to the south on to the road to Vale. Currently along the road there are a couple of large business properties doing light manufacturing. Until at least the '70s there were abandoned frame buildings and an old brick building, perhaps a store, at the end of the road. Only its floor remains. Prior to the completion of the trail the actual rail was not walkable, heavily overgrown with thirty year old trees and partially washed out. There is a raised embankment to the west of the easement where there may have been a couple of sidings years ago if old maps can be relied on. If instead of heading south you turn north, it's roughly a half mile to the Vale Tunnel.
This line passes through Raytown to the north and according to one Raytown history website, it reached the city in 1903. The last paint date on the bridge is 6-56 and an older date might be a 23.
This rail line was inactivated in the early '80s but has not been abandoned. There was controversy some years ago over whether trains could ever run on this line again. Residences had been built adjacent to the track and the city of Raytown even cut through the grade to realign a road to bypass a narrow underpass. In 1998 the federal Surface Transportation Board ruled that the line was still railroad property and could be used to operate trains in the future. Hence this line is referred to as "inactive" rather than "abandoned". See: http://members.tripod.com/mo_central_rail/stb.html
In 2010 the condition of the rail between this bridge and Vale was terrible. It was heavily overgrown and much of the ballast and a number of ties had washed away due to flooding. The rail itself appeared intact but some had come loose and tipped over. Other sections were unsupported for several feet where ties and ballast were gone. As of 2020 the rails and ties have been removed and replaced with a graveled trail. Access to the bridge is simple.
This rail line enters Jackson County from Pleasant Hill to the south, passes through Greenwood, then to the west of Lee's Summit, and through Raytown before joining the yards at Leeds. The Vale tunnel and several of the bridges along the line probably date to the opening of the line.