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California Photos

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Re: Former SD&AE route reopens after 28 years - By mikem on 08/04/07 at 12:10:26 - '2007-07-29-1455-37.jpg' 368 KB
SD&AE A short tunnel


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By coaster on 06/26/06 at 21:57:33 - '100_0277.jpg' 123 KB
Another (and clearer shot) from the northwest corner . . .


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By coaster on 06/26/06 at 21:52:32 - '100_0274.jpg' 127 KB
on Apr 15th, 2004, 6:52am, coaster wrote:       (Click here for original message)

In 1974, four years after the final California Zephyr departed, Oakland designated Western Pacific's 3rd & Washington Street depot as its first official historic landmark.
Seen below, in earlier times, but still many years after its 1909 construction at a cost of $36,000.  A dollar went farther in those days.

And now seen here as it is today (literally, today, 6/26/2006).  Looking not at all bad, methinks.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Hutch on 02/21/06 at 23:04:44 - 'EastSummit.jpg' 124 KB
I went to Summit this past Sunday (2/19/06).  Brrrrr.  Here is a photo that gives you the general idea of how COLD and WET it was (for California).  Sorry for the quality, but I didn't want to get out of the car and damage the lens!!!  There were A LOT of railfans up there taking pictures.  I am sure there are more artful photos of the snow conditions taken by people more brave with their camera equipment than I.  Maybe they will post some of their photos.
This photo was taken looking east from East Summit.  Don't let the lens fool you, this train is few 100 yards away from me.


Re: Tehachapi and Cajon status/conditions - By Passenger_Extra on 10/14/05 at 12:10:10 - 'WFarm1.jpg' 60 KB
on Oct 14th, 2005, 10:56am, Pennsy wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Hi PX,
Worse than that; how do these individual crews communicate with each other so that the train climbs the hill properly. PRR did it with whistles and hand signals from one engine to the other. Fairly complex, but it worked especially with crews that were used to working with the other engine crews, whether they were pushing or pulling.  

That and a  fist full of train orders !
Heres how the B&O got up the escarpment from from Fair Port harbor to Akron.
Eat my dust UP!


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 15:06:57 - 'GSMR012-2.jpg' 84 KB
Looking back towards Point Richmond.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 15:04:38 - 'GSMR041.jpg' 129 KB
Tracks looking back towards Point Richmond.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 15:02:14 - 'GSMR034.jpg' 120 KB
Manual switching lever.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 14:59:07 - 'GSMR060.jpg' 79 KB
Old pump house.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 14:57:33 - 'GSMR019.jpg' 121 KB
A shot of the trackage leading to the pier.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By Stan_Fong on 08/28/05 at 14:54:33 - 'GSMR012.jpg' 202 KB
Thank you for addressing the stations in Oakland  .  Yesterday I decided to visit the Golden State Model Railroad Museum in Point Richmond, California where they did a fantastic job of modelling the Oakland Mole (no Albers Mill building though  ) and was delighted to find that the ferry slip that was served by Santa Fe was still intact, albeit reinforced.  The trackage that led up to the slip is still there as well as an old pump station.
I hope someone will go into some detail about the history of this Pt. Richmond structure - when its operating years were and the reason for its closure.
Also, can anyone recommend a comprehensive book on the Oakland Mole?  I have been consumed with interest since I joined this board.  I commute from the East Bay to San Francisco on BART every day, and every time we leave the West Oakland Station, I crane my neck in all directions in the hopes of seeing SOMETHING that can lead me to its former location.
On the SP Board it was brought to my attention that the location of the old Trainshed is now the southwestern area of the Matson terminal...I drove down there and took some pictures of that area and only imagined what it would have been like 60 years ago.....


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/25/05 at 19:55:01 - 'superskunk-c.jpg' 60 KB
Here is the rear end of the Super Skunk, showing off its "permanent drumhead".  Note the roof-mounted Marker Light!
Notice also the "blank end" of the RDC, parked on the track to the left...


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/25/05 at 19:51:14 - 'superskunk-b.jpg' 66 KB
After making sure everybody's safely off the train, the engine crew swings into the cab and prepares to pull forward to turn the train on the wye and re-position it for its return to Fort Bragg a couple hours from now...


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/25/05 at 19:48:27 - 'superskunk-a.jpg' 68 KB
The Super Skunk tourist train arrives from Fort Bragg, and discharges its passengers next to the RDC.  That's my brother posing in front of the diminutive 2-8-2.


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/25/05 at 19:45:20 - 'rdc-a.jpg' 70 KB
I also managed to locate a few old Ektachromes, taken in 1967, of basically the same action at Willits.  Here, RDC No. 10 (the only RDC Southern Pacific ever owned) stands by to become today's northbound Train 4, the Redwood, for Eureka.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:54:24 - 'UP-103-d.jpg' 12 KB
In a matter of seconds, it's all over.  No. 103 continues its climb toward Lugo and Summit as silence settles over the desert again.  If we were seen by anyone on the train, they probably forgot the encounter in a minute or two.  But I still remember, these 39 years later.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:48:42 - 'UP-103-c.jpg' 26 KB
This, I believe, is the Dome Diner, running just ahead of the Dome Lounge pictured above.  In my haste to follow the train, I didn't even notice the Joshua Tree...


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:45:49 - 'UP-103-b.jpg' 22 KB
I'm pretty sure this is the Dome Lounge Car, though I can't read the number even on the original print.  No. 103 is probably cruising at about 60 even on this upgrade (they routinely put 4 or even 5 E-units up front).  That's my brother, standing as close to the ballast as he dares.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:43:16 - 'UP-103-a.jpg' 17 KB
The next morning we were up bright and early and riding around in the high desert country near Hesperia.  The sight of any approaching headlight filled us with adrenaline, but we were especially thrilled to realize that this was no less august a celebrity than UP's No. 103, the westbound City of Los Angeles.  No. 103 is running from left to right, majestically climbing the 1.7% grade up out of the Victor Valley, headed toward Summit and down into the LA basin (they left Chicago day before yesterday...)  This photo is of the Dome Coach.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:37:13 - 'UP-Caboose.jpg' 31 KB
Here is the caboose of the same westbound UP freight, which is filling the canyon with brake-shoe haze as it descends the 2.2% grade.  I'm standing on the westbound passing track (actually used by heavier freights to hold clear of the main while they sit 15 or 20 minutes to cool their wheels).  The eastbound main is on the other side of the freight.  There used to be a row of employee houses, and a small depot beyond the tracks on the right there, too, but those buildings were removed sometime in the 1950s.


Re: Cajon Pass - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:32:29 - 'UP-Power.jpg' 35 KB
Here are a few photos I found stashed away and all but forgotten, taken by me in the Spring of 1966 while on a Cajon camping weekend with several other Junior High-age railfans (one of them had a Dad with a Station Wagon and the patience of Job).  The photos reflect cheap equipment and my 13-year-old "eye" for composition...
This first shot is taken at Cajon, looking north as a westbound UP freight descends the hill.  No. 422 here is an SD-24, the next two are likely SD-24Bs, and there are probably at least three more locomotives behind them...


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 01:05:03 - 'SP-10.jpg' 20 KB
Train time at Willits... passengers just off the Super Skunk watch as it prepares to leave to be turned on the wye.  They'll have a couple of hours for shopping and sightseeing (and lunch) in Willits before it's time to return.  I've heard that the steam train's coaches (painted wine red with black roofs and gold arches above the windows) are ex-Erie commuter cars.
Meanwhile, RDC No. 10 (painted for NWP's parent SP) prepares to get underway for Eureka.  At this moment, both trains face north.


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 00:58:49 - '45-Cab.jpg' 25 KB
A close-up of the 2-8-2's gangway...  the locomotive is painted maroon and red with gold pinstriping...


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 00:56:53 - '45-Willits.jpg' 18 KB
After a while, the Super Skunk steam train arrives from Fort Bragg.  This is the "tourist train", in contrast to the M-100 which works as an all-stops local to serve people along the CW right-of-way.  Note the "spark arrestor" atop the 2-8-2's stack.  Over on the next track is SP's only RDC, No. 10, operating today as Train No. 4, The Redwood, to Eureka.


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 00:51:44 - 'M-200.jpg' 25 KB
Here is Motor Car M-100 in front of the depot at Willits, the interchange point between the California Western and the Northwestern Pacific.  The camera looks north.  The M-100 came in from Fort Bragg (from behind the camera); has dropped its passengers and turned on the wye north of the depot, and is now facing south for its return to Fort Bragg.  The school-bus yellow and aluminum-silver roof of the M-100 are a colorful contrast to the dark redwood shingles of the Willits depot.  It is the middle of a Summer day, and everything radiates heat...


Re: Redwood Country - By Norm_Anderson on 02/21/05 at 00:44:21 - 'Fort-Bragg-Depot.jpg' 20 KB
I recently located some old photos that I was sure had been lost-- they're not from the trip I described, but were taken a year or two later, in the Summer of 1968.  They are B&W photos, taken with a little Kodak "Brownie Instamatic" camera, so I apologize in advance for the grainy quality of the images.
This first shot is of the bright yellow depot at Fort Bragg.  The view looks west; the tracks are off camera to the right, and the Pacific Ocean is at the horizon.


Re: LAUPT - By Norm_Anderson on 01/18/05 at 09:57:06 - 'LAUPT.jpg' 27 KB
OK, OK, an artist I ain't...  
This is a highly simplified, not-to-scale schematic of the approaches to LAUPT as it was in the days before Amtrak.  Mission Tower sits on the west bank of the Los Angeles River, about 3/4 mile up from the end-of-track at LAUPT.  (The gray double line actually represents six lead tracks, which curve 90* around to the south before tying up under the sheds.)
Don't let the picture fool you-- the Los Angeles River, in reality, is a concrete-lined channel that usually has about enough water in it to float a cake of soap...
The blue line running north up the west side of the river is the Santa Fe's Second District (later, the "Pasadena Sub"), and was the route of the Super Chief, El Capitan, Chief, and Fast Mail.  Today, MTA's Gold Line to Pasadena follows a different route out of LATC, but picks up this trackage at about the point where it crosses the river at the top of the diagram.
The red line running north up the east side of the river is the route of SP's Coast Line and San Joaquin Valley Line trains, such as the Daylights, Lark, Owl, West Coast, Coaster, etc.  Today, Metrolink's Ventura County Line and Antelope Valley Line trains use these rails.  Just off the top of the diagram was SP's Taylor Yard and roundhouse, which today, I believe, is the site of Metrolink's coach yard and engine facility.  beyond that is Glendale, and then Burbank Jct. where the Coast Line and Valley Line divided.
The red line running straight east is SP's Sunset Route/Golden State Route main, and saw such varnish as the Sunset, Golden State, Imperial, Argonaut, etc.  This line is not used by any Merolink service today.
The orange line running south down the east side of the river is the Union Pacific main, which hosted the City of Los Angeles, Challenger, City of St.Louis, etc.  Today,  Metrolink's San Bernardino Line follows this route for the first couple of miles out of LATC; it is also the route of Metrolink's Riverside Line.
The blue line running down the west side of the river is Santa Fe's Third District (later, the "San Bernardino Sub", and hosted the San Diegans and the Grand Canyon Limited.  Today, this is the route of Metrolink's Orange County Line.  Just off the bottom of the diagram are Amtrak's (ex-Santa Fe) Coach Yards and, beyond that, the engine facilities at Redondo Junction.


Re: Key System - By coaster on 05/24/04 at 17:01:36 - 'alameda_belt_line_105.jpg' 67 KB
Dennis --
Apologies for misunderstanding your original question!  I was thinking public transit, rather than the Alameda Belt Line -- which, I confess, completely slipped my mind.
I'm familiar with that bridge you referred to, by the way.
UP currently owns what's left of the ABL, which -- for all practical intents and purposes -- ceased operation in 1998/99.  Of the original 12.5 miles of track it operated, only approximately two miles see even sporadic use by UP today.   (Currently, there's very little real industry of any sort on the island.)
Below, a photo of Alameda Belt Line's S-2 #105 back in the 1970s.


Re: Del Monte - By coaster on 05/03/04 at 01:20:50 - 'Train28_Harrison.jpg' 50 KB
Hi all --
Came across a photo of the Del Monte circa 1907 departing San Francisco along the Southern Pacific's original r.o.w. in and out of town, somewhere along Harrison Street (probably around 17th Street, at a guess), which is on the opposite (west) side of Potrero Hill and Espee's subsequent mainline.  The train's running due south at this point; moments later, her route would have turned southwest for some truly fascinating street-running that bisected city blocks and intersections at an oblique angle before emerging onto a trestle over Dolores Street -- just beyond 25th Street -- to turn south once again for Daly City, Colma, South San Francisco and the peninsula.
Much of this trackage remained in place well into the 50s, used by switchers servicing industries, although the trestle was long gone by then.  The old oblique right-of-way (now a small city park) between San Jose Avenue and Guerrero had only just lost its tracks when I went to school there in the early 50s.  (Kids of a slightly earlier era must have had quite a show interrupting their studies.)
Bits of this Harrison Street trackage remain in place, even today, although unused.


Recommended reading and other media . . . - By coaster on 04/30/04 at 16:04:37 - 'key_system_train_on_bay_bridge.jpg' 59 KB
Dennis --
When it comes a recommended reading on the Key System, you won't find any better than Harre Demoro's "Key Route -- Transbay Commuting by Train and Ferry" -- Volumes I & II, Interurban Press Specials #95 and 97.  Nobody ever covered the SF-Oakland transit scene better than he.  Both volumes are out of print but still readily available.  There's a good likelihood of picking up one or the other volume from a vendor at any large train show.
Additionally, Vernon Sapper published a volume (again through Interurban Press) entitled "Streetcars of the Key System."  Enjoyable, but skimpy on information, particularly when compared to the previous volumes.
You might also put yourself on a hunt for a video which came out a number of years ago, produced locally by KTVU, which features a wealth of vintage film covering the Key System, Sacramento Northern, Northwestern Pacific, etc.  (There's even a clip of the long-gone Castro Street cablecar from San Francisco.)  The title escapes me (as did my copy of the tape a couple of years back), but it, too, is readily available at any good train show.  Well worth the effort.
While I'm at it, though, a recent comment you made about old movies (on the LAUPT thread) puts me in mind of a couple of other old films: "Song of the Thin Man" (1941) features a scene shot on the Bay Bridge, showing its original two-way traffic configuration on the upper deck.  Also, "After the Thin Man" (1936) has a scene that was shot at the exterior of SP's 3rd & Townsend terminal in San Francisco.
P.S.  Another Key System photo, this time on the bridge (undated, by definitely post-1946, judging from the two-lane vehicle traffic, and shot from the cab of another train).


More East Bay Terminal . . . - By coaster on 04/29/04 at 12:56:25 - 'east_bay_terminal_Tower1.jpg' 132 KB
Couldn't resist adding the photo below (from the collection of John Stashik).  During the peak of their activity in 1939-1941, bridge trains of the Key System, Interurban Electric Railway and Sacramento Northern operated across the Bay Bridge on headways as close as 65 seconds.  They were controlled into and out of East Bay Terminal by the gentleman (and his associates, I imagine) pictured below.  And no, by the way, I haven't the slightest idea where the tower was located in relation to the rest of the terminal.
Note the track schematic.


Re: Del Monte - By coaster on 04/25/04 at 05:13:24 - 'SSW_american_flyer_--_lou_cross_photo.jpg' 39 KB
Hi, Norm --
A relatively short reply this time around, simply because I've misplaced a couple of photos (not to worry, I'll find 'em!) that I'd planned to include.  Cutting to the chase, however, the car in question apparently is an "American Flyer" ex-SSW.  (Whether it's the afore-mentioned #203, which underwent such a horrendous identity crisis, I've not been able to determine as yet.)  Just today, I stumbled across a pair of articles from the South Bay Historical Railway Society in their The Santa Clara issues for Spring and Summer 2001 (LINK URL and LINK URL ) which give a truly fascinating history of the Del Monte and which allude to an ex-SSW "American Flyer" car being added to the consist in the 1950s.
A couple of interesting tidbits of info from those articles: The Oliver Millett parlor car (pictured in the first photo) was named for an SP parlor car attendant on the Del upon his 1947 retirement after 32 years of service, and is the only Southern Pacific car to be named for an employee.  Additionally, it was in October 1960 that the Del Monte received additional commuter coaches (and a dual train number) for the SF-San Jose portion of its daily run.
Interesting cars, those "American Flyers," built for several railroads (Boston & Maine, Bangor & Aroostock, New Haven, Lehigh Valley, and -- geographical mystery! -- the Cotton Belt) by Osgood Bradley.  Caught their nickname in the mid-30s when A.C. Gilbert brought out a series of American Flyer replicas.  (I believe they also served as the inspiration for a subsequent series of Lionel offerings.)
Included below, just because I had it at hand, is a Lou Cross photo of SSW #203 at Los Angeles' Mission Road yards in the early 50s, possibly upon its arrival for transfer to SP.  I'll try to have those other photos up in the next day or so.


Re: Del Monte - By coaster on 04/22/04 at 13:32:53 - 'del_monte_redwood_city_1966.jpg' 30 KB
Howdy again, Norm and Dennis!
First off, Norm, regarding that car on the end:  Frankly, I was at first attracted to the front-end heavyweight, which I initially assumed to be the anomaly in the Del Monte consist.  It wasn't, however, as several subsequent photos I've tracked down will attest.  (Photo below taken at Redwood City 1966, for example.)  Apparently, SP used more than one consist on its once-a-day roundtrip -- possibly preferring to maintain entire trainsets at once, rather than piecemeal -- of which this was one.
The trailing car is bothersome, and no, your eyes aren't going bad (or at least, no worse than mine).  One item stands out in the picture to offer us several clues: the presence of stairwells at both ends of the car.  This indicates that it could neither have been (a) a parlor-obs, or (b) any sort of diner/lounge.  (The lounge car, possibly the Millett, is the center car in any event.)  Additionally the double-ended stairwells indicate two possible scenarios for that third car: (a) That it was a "modernized" heavyweight (SP's Sacramento shops routinely rebuilt older cars), possibly brought about by the postwar shortage of new equipment; or (b) That it may be an "American Flyer"-type (possibly SSW's former 203, which became SP 2703 in July, 1954, then SP 2351 in October 1954, then T&NO 464 in November 1960, and finally SP 2351 before its 1964 scrap date).  Either scenario strikes me as likely.
Somewhere hereabouts I've a 1966 photo of the Del showing a blunt-end parlor-obs, which is definitely not the car in the first photo.  I'll try to find it for future inclusion, eyes permitting.  (I've got a couple of years on you, Norm, plus the fact that I insist on working in N-scale to boot!)
As regards the "rainbow" days, Dennis, I remember them all too well.  Espee went completely nuts following WWII, with differing liveries and paintschemes that made it appear as though the Wizard of Oz had hired on.  It wasn't until 1958 that, faced with a severe recession, the railroad figured they'd be better off standardizing on that "low-rent" Sunset Limited scheme for all their equipment.  By then, of course, they'd already taken to a wholesale mixing and matching of their rollingstock.    
I also remember, now that you mention it, a couple of tuscan-red PRR duplex sleepers that resided in SP's 3rd Street passenger yards for years.  Everybody (SP and Pennsy) seemed to have forgotten their existence.  Don't know if they ever made it back home.
Regards for now,
P.S.  Random fact worth considering: The Del Monte is also reputed to have had the best bartender in the entire SP system.


Re: Del Monte - By coaster on 04/20/04 at 18:18:13 - 'del_monte_in_1959.jpg' 25 KB
Hi guys --
And sorry to be late in responding to this, but I only noticed the post today.
The Del Monte, which ran as trains 77 and 78, was actually Southern Pacific's first "name train," dating back to the early 1880's.  Its clientele, particularly in the early days, consisted of the "nabobs" of San Francisco society, who commuted between their city residences and their "retreats" in the Monterey-Pacific Grove area.
At various points in its lifetime, the Del Monte ran on a daily, thrice-weekly, or weekend schedule.  Consists likewise varied as to number of cars, but always featured a parlor car.  As to SP combining it with local commute runs, I'm not sure at which point this started, but the trains' schedules featured a 5-minute layover in San Jose for the southbound (timetable east) 78, while the northbound 77 (timetable west) laid over 14 minutes while commuter coaches -- from trains #126 and 139 -- were either cut off or added on, respectively.
The Del Monte came to an end on May 1, 1971.
Nowadays, however, plans are afoot to revive train service into Monterey as part of Amtrak's California Corridor program, with several trains connecting at San Jose with Caltrain's Peninsula and Capitol Corridor trains.
Below is a 1959 shot of Train 77 pulling into 3rd & Townsend.
-- Paul


Re: SF Bay area 'Baby Bullets' aim for June startu - By coaster on 04/09/04 at 02:04:49 - 'SP2487_at_Mission_Bay_1948.jpg' 76 KB
Norm --  
Nice to see someone else taking the curmudgeonly low-road here, for a change, even though I agree this is a good move on CalTrain's part.  Interestingly, CalTrain has acknowledged that there will be slowdowns in service on most of the "non-Baby Bullet" rush hour trains due to the need for these expedited trains to run around the all-stops runs on the single passing tracks.  Yet their promise to add additional stops on these new runs, as subsequent demand warrants, strikes me as either (a) whistling in the dark, or (b) a surefire way to defeat the purpose of the "Baby Bullets" by slowing down their traveling time.
Speaking of those earlier years and their faster runs, however, it wasn't just GS- and MT-series locomotives that protected those schedules.  Thought I'd throw in a shot of a P-10 4-6-2 -- complete with skyline casing, no less! -- which ended its service years in the commute pool.


Re: Stations  in Oakland Calif - By coaster on 04/08/04 at 02:31:12 - 'lampost.jpg' 34 KB
on Apr 7th, 2004, 9:35am, Alco83 wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Nice photo, Paul.  Does this station still stand?  If not, what (if anything) occupies this location today?

The structure still stands, for what it's worth, derelict and fenced off.  No one seems really to have the slightest clue what to do with it.  I've included a recent shot of the front exterior; additional info and (depressing) photos can be found at
-- Paul


And speaking of those SP commuter runs . . . - By coaster on 03/31/04 at 06:47:34 - 'SP_Commute_run.jpg' 80 KB
Thought this photo might jog a few memories for you . . .
-- Paul

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