Northwestern Pacific Railroad
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The Northwestern Pacific Railroad (reporting mark NWP) is a regional railroad that serves the North Coast of California. Its main line is 271 miles (436 km) long and runs between Schellville and Eureka. An additional portion of the line runs from the Ignacio Wye to the edge of San Rafael. Currently, only the 62 mi (100 km) stretch between Schellville and Windsor is in operation with freight and SMART commuter trains.
|Northwestern Pacific Railroad|
NWP #1922 running freight near Petaluma, California; October 21, 2011
|Website||North Coast Railroad Authority
Northwestern Pacific Railroad
|Owner||North Coast Rail Authority|
Sonoma–Marin Area Rail Transit
|Character||freight and commuter railroad|
|ca. 1980||closed to all traffic|
|1989||North Coast Rail Authority established|
|2011||Service begins under NWPRA|
271 mi (436 km)
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
The portion of the NWP main line between the Ignacio Wye in Marin County and the depot in Healdsburg is owned by Sonoma–Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART), a commuter railroad. The Schellville–Ignacio and Healdsburg–Eureka portions are owned by the North Coast Railroad Authority. Private contractor NWPco operates freight service under NCRA lease.
In the late 1800s both the Southern Pacific Railroad ("SP") and the Santa Fe Railroad had great interests in building lines north from San Francisco to Humboldt County to transport logs south. Both railroads planned to build a line north, the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway ("AT&SF") starting with a boat connection in present-day Larkspur, California, and the Southern Pacific, starting at its interchange in American Canyon, north through Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino and Humboldt counties to finally terminate in Eureka, California. As plans went forward it became clear that only one railroad would be profitable in the Eel River Canyon, so the Southern Pacific and Santa Fe entered into a joint agreement, and in 1906 merged 42 railroad companies between Marin and Humboldt Bay to create one railroad line stretching from Schellville, California to Eureka. Construction was finally completed through the unstable Eel River canyon in October 1914 when a "golden spike" ceremony and celebration was held to mark the accomplishment. The Southern Pacific Railroad controlled the southern end of the line from Willits south to Marin and Schellville, while the AT&SF controlled the northern end from Willits to Eureka. There were also dozens of miles of narrow-gauge trackage in Marin, which was controlled by SP.
The railroad service became popular; a 1911 daily NWP timetable shows 10 passenger trains each way, plus dozens of freights.
In 1929 the AT&SF sold its half-interest to the Southern Pacific, making the NWP a full SP subsidiary.
The SP eraEdit
Train at Santa Rosa, California in 1911
|Locale||California's North Coast from Marin County to Eureka|
|Dates of operation||1907–1998|
|Successor||Southern Pacific Transportation Company
Eureka Southern Railroad
|Track gauge||4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge|
|Previous gauge||80 miles (130 km) of system originally 3 ft (914 mm)|
|Length||271 miles (436 km)|
|Headquarters||Schellville, California - Operational
Palo Alto, California - Administrative
|Website||North Coast Railroad Authority
Northwestern Pacific Railroad
Passenger service boomed until the 1930s, when improved roads and highways made traveling and shipping by motor vehicle more accessible, and by 1935 both freight and passenger service slowed to a crawl because of the Great Depression. With the onset of World War II, freight shipments rose while passenger service stayed roughly the same. Freight service on the NWP picked up heavily again in the 1950s as a large increase in the demand for lumber came about due to the post-war housing boom.
Branch lines were dismantled during the 1930s. The Sebastopol branch became redundant following purchase of the Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railroad in 1932, and California State Route 12 adopted the former alignment between Leddy and Sebastopol. The Trinidad extension reverted to a logging line after NWP service ended in 1933. Sonoma County's River Road adopted the former alignment of the Guerneville branch from Fulton to Duncans Mills after rails were removed in 1935. Diesels were being used on all trains by 1953, with the exception of ten-wheelers number 181 and 183 pulling passenger trains numbered 3 and 4 between Willits and Eureka with number 182 on standby. NWP locomotives 112, 140, 141, 143, and 178 plus SP numbers 2345, 2356, 2564, 2582, and 2810 were stored at Tiburon for emergency use; but steam power had disappeared by 1955. During March 1958, with the exception of the tri-weekly Willits-Eureka Budd Rail Diesel Car passenger service, all mainline passenger service was discontinued. The "Budd car" made its last run in 1969.
Freight traffic remained high until the 1970s. An example of a 1970s work day on the NWP might look something like the following: During the final decade of Southern Pacific operation, carloads of lumber left Eureka each morning pulled by six EMD SD9 locomotives called "Cadillacs" by their crews. The train might pick up a refrigerator car of butter from Fernbridge and more lumber cars from Fortuna and Scotia before making a meal stop for its crew at the Fort Seward depot. More lumber cars might be added at Alderpoint during the long, gentle climb up the Eel River canyon. A second crew took over at Willits, where more cars from the California Western typically swelled the train to approximately one hundred cars. Five miles of 2.25 percent grade from Willits to Ridge originally required helpers, but six "Cadillacs" typically moved the train from Willits to Ridge in two sections during later years. The remaining trip down the Russian River to Schellville included a meal stop for the crew at Geyserville.
Many Humboldt County mills began shipping lumber in trucks when a fire in the Island Mountain tunnel closed the line north of Willits in 1978, and only half of that traffic returned to the rails when the line reopened in 1979. Remaining traffic revenues were insufficient for track maintenance through the Eel River Canyon, at that time the most expensive stretch of rail line in the United States. In September 1983, the SP announced that it was shutting down the maintenance-intensive NWP line north of Willits. This led to a contentious court battle since the SP did not properly notify the Interstate Commerce Commission of their intent to abandon the line. The line was ordered reopened by the U.S. Circuit Court in March 1984.
The catastrophic Christmas flood of 1964 destroyed large portions of the railroad in Northern California, and permanently changed the topography of the area, making a rebuild unlikely in certain segments.
Sales and shortline developmentEdit
In 1984, the SP sold the north end from Willits to Eureka to Bryan Whipple, who ran it as the Eureka Southern Railroad. Under the reporting marks EUKA, the Eureka Southern operated revamped tourist train service as well as promising reliable freight traffic, the line was bankrupt within several years after hardships with the Eel River Canyon. In 1989, the North Coast Railroad Authority was founded by the California Legislature under the North Coast Railroad Authority Act to save the NWP from total abandonment. In June 1990, the Federal Railroad Administration issued Emergency Order No. 14 prohibiting all passenger service on the Eureka Southern due to deteriorated track structure. Repairs were made and the order was partially lifted in October .
In 1992, what was left of the Eureka Southern was sold to the NCRA, who operated it as their "North Coast Railroad" until 1995 when severe flooding of the Eel River led to an almost total washout. As a result, the north end of the NWP has not been in active service since 1995. FRA Emergency Order No. 21  issued in 1998 prohibits any train operation north of Willits. This order was amended in 1999 to allow the connecting California Western Railroad to resume operation to Willits Depot and turn trains on the wye at Willits Yard.
Beginning in the late 1980s, the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District began to purchase sections of the NWP's south end from the Southern Pacific Railroad. The SP began to lease the line to the California Northern Railroad in 1993, until the entire south end was purchased by a combination of the GGBHTD and Marin and Sonoma Counties, which operational control was merged on April 30, 1996 with the NCRA.
In 1996, the California Northern Railroad lease was terminated, and the NCRA took over operations of the line between Schellville and Willits. Using "Black Widow" EMD GP9 and SD9 locomotives, the "new" NWP ran from 1996 until 1998 and ran both freight service and occasional passenger excursion service from Santa Rosa and Healdsburg to Willits. Despite the new operations, the line was plagued by a series of harsh El Nino storms, and operational and financial mismanagement. Unsafe operating conditions, including washouts and bridge instability made even slow track speeds dangerous, and caused derailments on many occasions which forced the Federal Railroad Administration to issue Emergency Order No. 21  shutting down all operations the entire length of the line. In 1998, after financial problems caused a default on equipment loans, six Black Widows were returned to their lessor Omni-trax, and former Southern Pacific SD9s, leased from BUGX, and former North Coast Railroad GP9s, owned by the NCRA, were pressed into service, as well as sets of maintenance of way equipment. Much of this equipment remained in storage at the Willits and Schellville yards, with the first set being returned to BUGX in December 2016.
In 2001, after a brief rebuild and using three leased locomotives, the NWP resumed service between Schellville and Cotati, but was shut down after only a month of operatiion. In 2011, after a brief rebuilding process, the NWP was reopened between Schellville and Windsor, California. Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit commuter train construction began shortly after.
North Coast Railroad AuthorityEdit
In 1992, the North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA) purchased the Eureka Southern and leased the line to the newly formed North Coast Railroad. The NCRA was created by state law in 1989 to preserve the Northwestern Pacific line from future abandonment. In 1996, the North Coast RR and the former "south end", owned by the Southern Pacific RR, became the "new" Northwestern Pacific Railroad under public ownership. The goals of the new Northwestern Pacific Railroad include handling more freight by rail along the Highway 101 corridor, establishing passenger excursion trains, and eventually providing regular passenger commuter service. In 1998 the railroad, which had more than 208 damaged sites along 216 mi (350 km), became the first and only railroad in the United States to be officially closed by the Federal Railroad Administration. In January 2001, the NWP was reopened between Willits and Novato, but service was temporarily discontinued in September 2001 because the operator lacked capital to continue operations. The track from Lombard to Healdsburg is owned by the Sonoma–Marin Area Rail Transit District; the California Northern Railroad (CFNR) has trackage rights granted from Schellville to Willits.
On May 31, 2006, NCRA announced that it had selected a new operator for the revamped freight line. The winning bidder was NWP, Inc., led by CEO John H. Williams who had been instrumental in setting up Caltrain service on the San Francisco Peninsula. NCRA announced approval of a 5-year contract with NWP Co. in September 2006. The new NWP currently operates the line from Eureka to Schellville over the length of the original route of the NWP.
By late 2007, the NCRA was granted 500 million dollars to restore the original line from Napa to Willits. With Marin and Sonoma counties' Measure Q passing in 2008, the new SMART Rail began construction, with regular passenger trains beginning in late Spring 2017 between Sonoma County Airport and San Rafael, with bus connections to the Larkspur ferry landing and city of Cloverdale. Work forces began tie and ballast reconstruction from Schellville to Windsor in 2009.
Line reconstruction work began in early 2009, including electrical work and ballast and tie work. The NCRA and Northwestern Pacific Railroad had originally planned to start regular freight service on the line in late fall 2009, but a lawsuit filed by the City of Novato pushed the date back to early 2010. Reballasting and replacement of bad ties between Schellville and Windsor was completed by October 2009, with Federal Railroad Authority (FRA) inspections finished in early 2011. An earlier target date in 2010 was delayed when the Federal Railroad Administration ruled NCRA's petition to reopen the line was dependent upon approval from Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART), with whom the NWP shares trackage. This ruling was reversed in November 2010, with a joint-operating agreement following shortly after.
In June 2011, the Northwestern Pacific reopened the line and began operations over the section of track between Napa and Windsor, California. Service consists of about three trips weekly over the line. The railroad has hauled grain for dairy and poultry farms in Sonoma County, and lumber products out of Windsor and Schellville. Occasional construction trains for SMART have also been an integral part of NWP carloads. At Napa, the railroad exchanges freight carloads with the California Northern Railroad in American Canyon.
The new NWP (2009–present)Edit
Beginning as early as 2009, the NCRA began to rebuild and repair the NWP between Schellville and Windsor. Among the challenges faced in the attempt to reopen freight service including a lawsuit with the City of Novato, as well as operational concerns between the NCRA and SMART. In early 2010, it was announced that NWPco had won the bid for contract service, and in July 2011 the first freight train delivered grain to Petaluma. Trains today on the NWP run from the Lombard interchange with the California Northern Railroad, up to Windsor. Currently, grain and lumber transloads make up the bulk commodity of NWP shipments, however, occasional maintenance of way work for SMART and car storage in Schellville are also common.
Plans for the future of NWP freight are hazy, as plans and rumors about reconstruction of the line north have been spread for years. While SMART will eventually extend commuter service to Cloverdale, NCRA and NWPco have both publicly announced plans to open the line to the Skunk Train connection and major yard facility in Willits, although no timeline has been established. Both agencies plans are dependent on state and federal grants, and the success of the SMART train. There are no established plans to reopen the Eel River Canyon segment; however, multiple tourist companies have expressed interested in possibly opening an excursion and dinner train that would traverse Humboldt and Arcata bays. These proposals have been faced by many legal hurdles and financial issues.
- California Midland Railroad extended the Eel River and Eureka Railroad up the Van Duzen River to Carlotta, and was merged into SF&NW in 1903.
- California Northwestern Railway formed in 1898 for Southern Pacific Railroad to assume control of the SF&NP and extend the line from Ukiah to Willits in 1902. An extension was built from Willits to Sherwood in 1904. Merged into NWP in 1907.
- California and Northern Railway was formed by Santa Fe Railroad to build north from Eureka to Arcata in 1901, and was merged into SF&NW in 1904.
- Cloverdale and Ukiah Railroad extended the SF&NP from Cloverdale to Ukiah in 1889.
- Eel River and Eureka Railroad connected Humboldt Bay with the Eel River town of Fortuna in 1884, and was merged into SF&NW in 1903.
- Fort Bragg and Southeastern Railroad formed in 1905 for Santa Fe Railroad to assume control of the isolated 24-mile (39 km) Albion River Railroad built in 1891. Merged into NWP in 1907, but never connected to the remainder of the NWP system.
- Fulton and Guerneville Railroad constructed the 15-mile (24 km) SF&NP branch from Fulton to Guerneville in 1877.
- Marin and Napa Railroad extended the Sonoma Valley narrow-gauge 8 miles (13 km) from Sears Point to connect with the SF&NP at Ignacio in 1888.
- North Pacific Coast Railroad built a 3 ft narrow gauge line from Sausalito via the Tomales Bay coast to the Russian River in 1876. Became North Shore Railroad in 1902.
- North Shore Railroad formed to assume control of the North Pacific Coast narrow-gauge in 1902. Merged into NWP in 1907.
- Oregon and Eureka Railroad was formed in 1903 for Southern Pacific Railroad to assume control of logging lines around Arcata at the north end of Humboldt Bay. Selected lines to Trinidad were merged into Northwestern Pacific in 1911. The Trinidad extension reverted to Hammond Lumber Company control in 1933 and operated as logging branches of the Humboldt Northern Railway until 1948.
- Pacific Lumber Company built 7 miles (11 km) of track in 1885 to connect their mill at Scotia with the Eel River and Eureka Railroad at Alton. Branch lines were subsequently built up the Eel River; and these lines merged into SF&NW in 1903.
- Petaluma and Haystack Railroad built from Petaluma to Haystack landing on the Petaluma River in 1864. Purchased by SF&NP in 1876.
- San Francisco and Eureka Railway formed by Southern Pacific Railroad in 1903 to build a connection from Willits to Eureka. Merged into NWP in 1907.
- San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad (SF&NP) built from Donahue landing on the Petaluma River to Santa Rosa in 1870 and extended to Cloverdale in 1872. Extended from Petaluma to San Rafael in 1879. Extended from San Rafael to Tiburon by the San Francisco & San Rafael in 1884. Extended from Cloverdale to Ukiah by the Cloverdale & Ukiah in 1889. Merged in NWP in 1907.
- San Francisco and Northwestern Railway (SF&NW) formed by Santa Fe Railroad in 1903 to consolidate the California and Northern Railway from Arcata to Eureka, the Eel River and Eureka Railroad from Eureka to Alton, The California Midland from Alton to Carlotta, and the Pacific Lumber Company lines from Alton up the Eel River. Merged into NWP in 1907.
- San Francisco and San Rafael Railroad extended the SF&NP from San Rafael to Tiburon in 1884.
- San Rafael and San Quentin Railroad (SRSQ) was a narrow-gauge railroad formed on 25 February 1869 to connect a ferry landing at Point San Quentin with San Rafael.
- Santa Rosa, Sebastopol and Green Valley Railroad built the 6-mile (9.7 km) SF&NP branch from Santa Rosa to Sebastopol in 1890.
- Sonoma and Santa Rosa Railroad extended the Sonoma Valley narrow-gauge from Sonoma to Glen Ellen in 1882.
- Sonoma Valley Prismoidal Railway was an early wooden monorail that was to be built from Petaluma River landing 5 miles (8.0 km) to Schellville in 1876. However, only the segment from Norfolk landing (later called Wingo) on Sonoma Creek was ever completed. The line ceased operations in May 1877 and was converted to the narrow-gauge Sonoma Valley Railroad beginning in 1878.
- Sonoma Valley Railroad purchased Sonoma Valley Prismoidal Railway in 1878, converted it to a conventional 3 ft (914 mm) narrow-gauge, and extended it into Sonoma in 1879. Extended from Sonoma to Glen Ellen by the Sonoma & Glen Ellen in 1882. Extended from Sears Point landing to rail connection at Ignacio by Marin & Napa in 1888.
- Milepost 40.4 – Schellville (formerly junction with Sonoma Branch)
- Milepost 28.7 – Black Point bridge over Petaluma River
- Milepost 25.8 – Ignacio junction with San Rafael branch
- Milepost 27.8 – Novato
- Milepost 37.2 – bridge over Petaluma River
- Milepost 38.5 – Petaluma
- Milepost 46.1 – Cotati
- Milepost 53.8 – Santa Rosa
- Milepost 58.5 – Fulton (formerly junction with Guerneville branch)
- Milepost 62.9 – Windsor (Northern-most operationable and open point on NWP Today)
- Milepost 67.6 – bridge over Russian River
- Milepost 68 – Healdsburg
- Milepost 75.8 – Geyserville
- Milepost 85.2 – Cloverdale
- Milepost 100.1 – Hopland
- Milepost 114 – Ukiah
- Milepost 120 – Calpella
- Milepost 122.1 – Redwood Valley
- Milepost 131.4 – Ridge summit between Russian River and Eel River drainages is highest point on line
- Milepost 139.5 – Willits interchange with (formerly Union Lumber Company) California Western Railroad (AKA Skunk Train), which is still operational as a tourist line. A reconnection is planned, but as of June 2017, no timetable for this is in place.
- Milepost 166.5 – line enters Eel River Canyon at Dos Rios
- Milpost 194.8 – bridge over Eel River at south entrance of Island Mountain tunnel
- Milepost 206.5 – bridge over Eel River
- Milepost 209 – Alderpoint
- Milepost 237.7 – South Fork bridge over Eel River
- Milepost 255.6 – Scotia (formerly interchange with Pacific Lumber Company)
- Milepost 261.8 – bridge over Van Duzen River
- Milepost 262.7 – Alton junction with Carlotta Branch
- Milepost 266.1 – Fortuna
- Milepost 271 – Loleta
- Milepost 284.1 – Eureka
- Milepost 292.5 – Arcata
- Milepost 295.2 – Korblex (formerly interchange with Northern Redwood Company Arcata and Mad River Railroad)
- Milepost 300.5 – Samoa (formerly interchange with Hammond Lumber Company Humboldt Northern Railway)
|1||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||7400||ex-Eel River and Eureka Railroad #2 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #2 retired in 1916|
|2||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1883||7013||ex-Eel River and Eureka Railroad #1 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #1 retired in 1920|
|3||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1887||8947||ex-Los Angeles County Railroad #3 then Eureka and Klamath River Railroad #6 then Oregon and Eureka Railroad #6 retired in 1923|
|4||Norris Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1862||1009||ex-San Francisco and San Jose Railroad #2 then San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #1; used in passenger service between Tiburon and San Rafael; retired 1920|
|5||Booth||4-4-0||1873||17||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #5 scrapped 1911|
|6||Booth||4-4-0||1870||14||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #2; used in passenger service between Sausalito and San Quentin; destroyed by boiler explosion 1915|
|7||Booth||4-4-0||1870||15||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #3; used in passenger service between Sausalito and San Quentin; retired 1920|
|8||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1881||5485||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #8; shipped to Eureka in 1911 for construction through the Eel River canyon; retired 1925|
|9||Grant Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1883||1664||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #9; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Glen Ellen; reboilered 1917 retired 1938|
|10||Grant Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1883||1665||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #10; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Glen Ellen; reboilered 1917 scrapped 1937|
|11||Grant Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1878||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #6 scrapped 1912|
|12||Grant Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1878||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #7; shipped to Eureka in 1911 for construction through the Eel River canyon; retired 1926|
|13||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1875||3831||ex-Santa Fe Railroad #07 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway retired 1929|
|14||Grant Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1888||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #14; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Glen Ellen; reboilered 1915 retired 1926|
|15||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1878||4416||ex-New Mexico and Southern Pacific Railroad #203>#503 then Santa Fe Railroad #103>#049 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #7 scrapped 1930|
|16||Pennsylvania Railroad||4-4-0||1886||1031||ex-Pennsylvania Railroad #452 then Chicago, St. Louis and Pittsburgh Railroad #452 then Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad #8298>#298>#343 then Pacific Lumber Company #3 then Eel River and Eureka Railroad#4 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #4 retired 1930|
|17||Rogers Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1889||4155||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #17; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Duncan Mills; scrapped 1935|
|18||Rogers Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1889||4154||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #16 wrecked 1910|
|19||Rogers Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||3305||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #12; shipped to Eureka in 1911 for construction through the Eel River canyon; reboilered 1917 scrapped 1937|
|20||Rogers Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||3306||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #13; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Duncan Mills; reboilered ~1916 retired ~1932|
|21||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1904||24035||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #24; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Ukiah; scrapped 1937|
|22-23||American Locomotive Company||4-4-0||1908||44959-44960||used in passenger service between Sausalito and Ukiah; scrapped 1938 and 1949|
|51-54||American Locomotive Company||4-4-0||1914||54580-54583||scrapped 1938|
|99||E. Jardine||0-4-0T||1887||purchased by San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad 1898 sold 1910 North Bend Lumber Company|
|101||Rogers Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1889||4212||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #18; used on the mixed train between Santa Rosa and Sebastopol; scrapped 1928|
|102||Grant Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1888||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #15; used in freight service between Tiburon and Glen Ellen; retired 1929|
|103||Richmond Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1901||3304||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #20 scrapped 1935|
|104||Richmond Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1901||3303||ex-California Northwestern Railway #31; shipped to Eureka in 1911 for construction through the Eel River canyon; scrapped 1936|
|105||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1902||25620||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #21 scrapped 1934|
|106||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1902||25621||ex-California Northwestern Railway #32 then San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #25 scrapped 1934|
|107-108||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1904||23933 & 23951||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #22-23 scrapped 1937 & 1948|
|109||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1900||18179||ex-California Northwestern Railroad #30; used in freight service between Tiburon and Sausalito; scrapped 1948|
|110||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1900||17759||ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #19 scrapped 1937|
|111-114||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1908||44955-44958||used for freight service between Willits and Santa Rosa; #112 preserved California State Railroad Museum
#114 wrecked 1946 #111 & 113 scrapped 1949 and 1947
|130-133||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1910||49089-49092||initially used in passenger service between Sausalito and Willits; scrapped 1938|
|134-135||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1912||51536-51537||scrapped 1940|
|136-141||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1914||54578-54579 & 54975-54978||scrapped 1940-57|
|142-143||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1922||55356 & 55473||scrapped 1953|
|170-172||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1907||30105-30106 & 31094||ex-Las Vegas and Tonopah Railroad # 4, # 5 & # 8 purchased 1918 scrapped 1946-1950|
|178||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1906||29726||ex-Bullfrog Goldfield #13 > #11 purchased 1917 scrapped 1954|
|179||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1907||44753||ex-Las Vegas and Tonopah Railroad #12 purchased 1917 scrapped 1952|
|180-181||American Locomotive Company||4-6-0||1914||54979-54980||renumbered from #160-161 1918 scrapped 1952-1955|
|182-184||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1922||55351 & 55470-55471||# 184 destroyed in Scotia Bluffs slide 1953 – others scrapped 1955|
|201-202||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-6-2T||1903||22446 & 22474||ex-California Northwestern Railway #33-34 tenders added 1910; used in freight service on the Sherwood branch until #202 was shipped to Albion; scrapped 1930-1937|
|225||H. K. Porter, Inc||2-4-2T||1887||905||ex-National City and Otay Railroad #5 then Fort Bragg and Southeastern Railroad #1 scrapped 1937|
|226||Hinkley Locomotive Works||0-6-0||1880||ex-Santa Fe Railroad #122>#2232 then Fort Bragg and Southeastern Railroad #2 scrapped 1910|
|227-228||American Locomotive Company||0-6-0||1910||48037-48038||scrapped 1948-1949|
|229-231||American Locomotive Company||0-6-0||1914||54981-54983||scrapped 1948-1950|
|251||Lima Locomotive Works||Shay locomotive||21 September 1904||909||ex-Northwestern Redwood Company #1 then California Northwestern Railway 2nd #32; leased to Northwestern Redwood Company of Willits, California; leased to Portland, Eugene and Eastern Railroad; sold 1935 to Washington construction firm|
|255||Heisler||Heisler||1912||1254||ex-Jordan River Lumber Company #7 then Horseshoe Lumber Company #7 purchased 1922 sold Shaw Bertram Lumber Company 1924|
|300||Cooke Locomotive Works||2-6-0||1901||2624||ex-Southern Pacific Railroad #2140>#1714 leased 1929 retired 1934|
|301||Cooke Locomotive Works||2-6-0||1901||2626||ex-Southern Pacific Railroad #2142>#1716 leased 1929 retired 1934|
|351||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-6-0||1887||8776||ex-Eel River and Eureka Railroad #3 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #3 renumbered from #151 1914 scrapped 1916|
|352||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-6-0||1886||8092||ex-Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railroad #65>#314 then Santa Fe Railroad #0179 then San Francisco and Northwestern Railway #5 renumbered from #152 1914 scrapped 1929|
|353-354||American Locomotive Company||2-6-0||1908||45284-45285||renumbered from #153-154 1914 scrapped 1935|
Diesel locomotives 1996–1998Edit
|Number||Builder||Type||Date||Builder's #||Frame #||Notes|
|70||EMD||GP7||5/1953||18418||5250-10||Ex NCRR 70; ex EUKA 70; ex CCT 70; née RDG 618. Formerly stored in Eureka, CA. Scrapped in 2015.|
|2872||EMD||GP9E||4/1959||25136||5595-37||Ex NCRR 2872; ex SP 2872; ex SP 3847; ex SP 3699; née SP 5836. Stored out of service in Eureka, CA.|
|3190||EMD||GP9E||4/1955||19980||5369-4||Ex NCRR 3190; ex SP 3190; ex SP 3007; née SP 5625. Stored out of service in Eureka, CA.|
|3779||EMD||GP9E||3/1957||22922||5516-11||Ex NCRR 3779; ex SP 3779; ex SP 3581; née SP 5740. Stored out of service in Eureka, CA.|
|3786||EMD||GP9E||3/1957||22945||5516-34||Ex NCRR 3786; ex SP 3786; ex SP 3604; née SP 5763. Stored out of service in Willits, CA.|
|3804||EMD||GP9E||3/1957||22943||5516-32||Ex NCRR 3804; ex SP 3804; ex SP 3602; née SP 5761; to BUGX 3804. Formerly stored in Willits, Petaluma, and Schellville, CA. Sent to lessor in 2016.|
|3825||EMD||GP9||4/1959||25133||5595-34||Ex SP 3825; ex SP 3696; née SP 5833; to OMLX 3825 (1996?). Scrapped in 2004 in Loveland, CO.|
|3840||EMD||GP9E||2/1959||25146||5596-2||Ex SP 3840; ex SP 3654; née TNO 450; to OMLX 3840 (1996?); to RailServe (Prentiss, AB) 3840 (2000)|
|3844||EMD||GP9||4/1959||25137||5595-38||Ex SP 3844; ex SP 3700; née SP 5837. Wrecked in 1997. Stored out of service in Willits, CA.|
|3850||EMD||GP9||3/1959||25116||5595-17||Ex SP 3850; ex SP 3679; née SP 5816. Wrecked in 1997. Stored out of service in Willits, CA.|
|3857||EMD||GP9E||4/1959||25139||5595-40||Ex NCRR 3857; ex SP 3857; ex SP 3702; née SP 5839. Stored out of service in Eureka, CA.|
|4324||EMD||SD9||4/1954||19441||5322-13||Ex SP 4324; ex SP 3813; née SP 5352; to OMLX 4324 (1996?); to CRGX 100|
|4327||EMD||SD9||1/1955||20229||5381-7||Ex SP 4327; ex SP 3856; née SP 5378; to OMLX 4327 (1996?); to GWR 4327 (still in NWP Paint as of 1FEB14)|
|4423||EMD||SD9||3/1956||21297||5435-9||Ex SP 4423; ex SP 3946; née SP 5472; to OMLX 4423 (1996?); to NICX 5472|
|5305||EMD||SD9||7/1957||22808||5507-1||Née DRGW 5305; to OMLX 5305 (1996?); to CRRX 5305. Low short hood. Scrapped early October 2012.|
|6595||EMD||GP35||6/1964||29569||5669-19||OMLX 6595; ex SP 6595; née SP 7483; to OMLX 6595 (1996); to HBRY 2502 (1997); to OMLX 2256|
|6600||EMD||GP35||12/1964||29705||7756-4||OMLX 6600; ex SP 6600; née SP 7703; to OMLX 6600 (1996); to HBRY 2503 (1997)|
Diesel locomotives 2001Edit
|Number||Builder||Type||Date||Builder's #||Frame #||Notes|
|NWPY 171||EMD||SW1500||1969||34973||4557-2||LLPX 171; née AN 713|
|EMDX 6412||EMD||SD40||1/1971||37004||7290-39||Ex CR 6278; née PC 6278; to CFNR 4097; to KYLE 4097|
|EMDX 6413||EMD||SD40||1/1971||37009||7290-44||Ex CR 6283; née PC 6283; to CFNR 4098; to KYLE 4098|
Diesel locomotives post 2006Edit
|Number||Builder||Type||Date||Builder's #||Frame #||Notes|
|1322||EMD||GP7u||1/1952||15799||5110-2||BUGX 1322; ex BNSF 1322; née ATSF 2109. Painted in Santa Fe Yellowbonnet scheme. Returned to BUGX summer 2016|
|1501||EMD||MP15DC||12/1974||73625-5 ||Ex GMTX 212; ex UPY 1293; née SP 2694. Unit bought 4/2016. In Service out of Schellville. Painted in SP Bloody Nose colors.|
|1922||EMD||GP9||8/1957||22740||5505-21 ||Ex BUGX 337; Ex BNSF 1628; ex BN 1922; née NP 337. Leased from BUGX. In Service out of Schellville. Painted in SP Bloody Nose colors.|
|2009||Railpower||RP20BD||12/2007||19234||5321-B29||Originally leased from RJ Corman, later purchased. In Service out of Schellville. Built as UP GP9B #158B in 2/1954.|
|5076||EMD||GP38-2||10/1973||72745-18||Ex NS 5076; née SOU 5076. Unit bought 8/18/2016. In Service out of Schellville. Painted in Norfolk Southern Catfish scheme.|
|TCRY 007||Baldwin/EMD||VO-1000m||1/1944||70126||Unit bought 2/2013. Built as SLSF VO-1000 #215. Repowered with an EMD 567 in 1957.|
The NWP 3 ft (914 mm) narrow-gauge line was built as the North Pacific Coast Railroad in 1873 from a San Francisco ferry connection at Sausalito to the Russian River at Monte Rio. Rails were extended downriver to Duncans Mills in 1876, and up Austin Creek to Cazadero in 1886. This narrow-gauge line became the Shore Division of the NWP formed by Santa Fe and Southern Pacific in 1907. The 4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge NWP Guerneville branch was extended to Monte Rio in 1907 and the line from Monte Rio to Duncans Mills was dual gauged in 1909. Summer tourists from San Francisco visited Russian River vacation spots via joint narrow-gauge/standard-gauge NWP "triangle" excursions until automobile travel became more popular. The southern end of the line was standard-gauged from San Francisco Bay to Point Reyes Station at the head of Tomales Bay in 1920. The line up Austin Creek to Cazadero was standard-gauged in 1926. The remaining line from Monte Rio to Point Reyes Station was dismantled in 1930. The route of the narrow-gauge line from Fulton to Duncan Mills became a popular back road connecting all the towns from the coast to the central county.
- Milepost 6.5 – Sausalito
- Milepost 11.7 – tunnel 1
- Milepost 12.6 – Corte Madera
- Milepost 13.4 – Larkspur
- Milepost 14.7 – Kentfield
- Milepost 16.5 – Junction later known as San Anselmo
- Milepost 18.3 – Fairfax
- Milepost 20.7 – tunnel 2
- Milepost 23.1 – Nicasio
- Milepost 27 – bridge over Paper Mill Creek and highway
- Milepost 35.6 – Arroyo San Geronimo trestle
- Milepost 36.4 – Point Reyes Station
- Milepost 45.4 – Marshall
- Milepost 50.5 – bridge over Keyes Creek
- Milepost 51.9 – tunnel 3
- Milepost 53.1 – Tomales
- Milepost 53.7 – tunnel 4
- Milepost 54.9 – Stemple Creek trestle
- Milepost 58.8 – Estero Americano Creek trestle
- Milepost 59.5 – Valley Ford
- Milepost 61.9 – Ebabias Creek trestle
- Milepost 62.2 – Bodega Road crossing
- Milepost 62.7 – Salmon Creek trestle
- Milepost 63.7 – Freestone
- Milepost 65.2 – Salmon Creek trestle
- Milepost 66.9 – Brown Creek trestle (this 142-foot (43 m) high trestle was reputedly the highest of its kind in the United States when built in 1876)
- Milepost 67.6 – Occidental
- Milepost 68.7 – Maquire Creek trestle
- Milepost 69.0 – Camp Meeker
- Milepost 70.5 – Larry Creek trestle
- Milepost 70.8 – bridge over Dutch Bill Creek
- Milepost 71 – tunnel 5
- Milepost 71.6 – bridge over Dutch Bill Creek
- Milepost 71.7 – bridge over highway
- Milepost 73.8 – Monte Rio
- Milepost 77 – bridge over Russian River
- Milepost 77.1 – Duncans Mills
- Milepost 82.1 – bridge over Austin Creek
- Milepost 84.3 – Cazadero The D.H. McEwen Lumber Company operated narrow gauge 2-cylinder Shay locomotive C/N 1823 at Cazadero briefly beginning in 1906.
|82||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1876||3842||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #11 scrapped 1911|
|83||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1875||3722||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #3 scrapped 1913|
|84||NPC Sausalito Shop||4-4-0||1900||1||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #20; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Point Reyes; retired 1920 scrapped 1924|
|85||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||7249||ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #14 wrecked|
|86||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||7236||ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #15 then NWP #19>#86 sold Duncan Mills Land & Lumber Company 1920 scrapped 1926|
|87||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1880||4960||ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #10 then NWP #10>#87 scrapped 1917|
|90||Brooks Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1891||1886||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #15 operated last narrow gauge NWP train in 1930 scrapped 1935|
|91||Brooks Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1894||2421||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #16 scrapped 1935|
|92||Brooks Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1891||1885||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #14; used in passenger service between Sausalito and Cazadero; retired 1926; scrapped 1935|
|93||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-4-0||1884||7249||1924 rebuild of wrecked #85 scrapped 1935|
|94||Baldwin Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1887||8486||ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #20 then NWP #21>#144>#94 scrapped 1935|
|95||Brooks Locomotive Works||4-6-0||1899||3418||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #18 then NWP #145>#95 retired 1929 scrapped 1935|
|195||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-6-0||1883||6611||ex-NPC/NS/NWP #13 scrapped 1912|
|321||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-8-0||1880||4974||ex-Denver and Rio Grande Railroad #44 then NS/NWP #40 scrapped 1912|
|322||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-8-0||1885||7676||ex-Hancock and Calumet Railroad #2 then Duluth, South Shore and Atlantic Railroad #33 then NS/NWP #33 scrapped 1914|
|323||Baldwin Locomotive Works||2-8-0||1885||7677||ex-Hancock and Calumet Railroad #3 then Duluth, South Shore and Atlantic Railroad #31 then NS/NWP #31 scrapped 1912|
Railroad in filmEdit
The Northwestern Pacific Railroad has been featured in several films, thanks to the historical and natural backgrounds offered by the route.
The NWP trestle at Greenbrae, Marin County, (MP 14.61) was featured in the 1971 film Dirty Harry. Clint Eastwood made a famous jump from the trestle onto a school bus loaded with kidnapped children passing underneath.
A 1991 television remake of Shadow of a Doubt was filmed at the Petaluma NWP depot, using former Daylight passenger equipment owned by the NCRA and Southern Pacific 6051, loaned from the California State Railroad Museum.
In the 2003 film Cheaper by the Dozen, the Santa Rosa Railroad Square and depot area were used as backdrops.
The film "Bloodloss" or "Day of Vengeance" utilized the tracks for a filming location just south of Dos Rios in the summer of 2008.
- Stindt (1978), p. 57.
- Silverthon (1953). "Northwestern Pacific down to Diesels and own Steam Power to Haul Trains". The Western Railroader. Francis A. Guido. 16 (167): supplement.
- Fox (1983), p. 7, 8, 35, 40 & 43.
- Glionna, John M. (April 22, 2001). "Light at the End of the Tunnel for a Struggling Little Railroad". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 8, 2011.
- North Coast Railroad Authority (2009-12-12). "Public draft, environmental impact report, North Coast Railroad Authority, Russian River Division executive summary". Retrieved 2009-12-12.
- North Coast Railroad Authority (2006-05-31). "NCRA Approves Operator Contract". Retrieved 2009-12-12.
- Martin, Nicole and Sobelman, Donald (11/20/2014) "Federal Preemption May Be The Key For Calif. Railroads" Barg Coffin Lewis & Trapp, LLP
- Borden (1963), p. 9.
- Borden (1963), p. 12.
- Borden (1963), p. 10–15.
- Codoni & Trimble (2006).
- Gale, V.J. and Valles, R.C.(Roadmasters) (1978). (untitled maintenance-of-way charts). Southern Pacific Railroad.
- Silverthorn, W.A. (1952). "Early Days on the NWP". The Western Railroader. Francis A. Guido. 15 (152): 4&5.
- Stindt (1974), p. 44.
- Stindt (1974), p. 53 & 72.
- Stindt (1974), p. 72.
- Stindt (1974), p. 53.
- Stindt (1974), p. 72-73.
- Stindt (1985), p. 33.
- Stindt (1974), p. 48.
- Stindt (1974), p. 52.
- Stindt (1974), p. 58 & 72.
- Stindt (1974), p. 71.
- Stindt (1974), p. 70–71.
- Stindt (1974), p. 41 & 71.
- Stindt (1985), p. 28.
- Stindt (1974), p. 69.
- Stindt (1985), p. 37.
- Stindt (1985), p. 35.
- Stindt (1974), p. 73.
- Stindt (1974), p. 52 & 59.
- Stindt (1985), p. 36–37.
- Stindt (1985), p. 34.
- Stindt (1985), p. 33–35.
- Koch (1971), p. 412.
- Stindt (1974), p. 11, 13, 19, 26, 28 & 30.
- Stindt (1978), p. 88–89.
- Stindt (1974), p. 8.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 32–33, 45, 50, 69, 76, 99, 125 & 154.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 78.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 48, 79 & 153.
- Dickinson & 1974 (113).
- Stindt (1974), p. 22.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 62 & 113.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 150.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 34.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 31.
- Stindt (1974), p. 17.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 147.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 40 & 149.
- Stindt (1974), p. 14.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 5, 36 & 96.
- Stindt (1974), p. 16 & 30–31.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 40, 64, 93, 116 & 145.
- Stindt (1974), p. 39.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 66 & 146.
- Stindt (1974), p. 1–4, 16, 53, 60 & 62–63.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 114.
- Stindt (1974), p. 26–27.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 36 & 38.
- Stindt (1974), p. 14–15, 65 & 69.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 84–85, 88–89 & 118.
- Stindt (1974), p. 10.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 67, 70, 109 & 118.
- Koch (1971), p. 422.
- Stindt (1974), p. 78.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 132–133.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 134.
- Stindt (1974), p. 16.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 129.
- Stindt (1974), p. 34.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 120.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 123 & 135.
- Stindt (1974), p. 25 & 33.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 135.
- Stindt (1974), p. 10, 16, 25, 35 & 39.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 124.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 6 & 135.
- Stindt (1974), p. 9, 16, 18, 29 & 34.
- Stindt (1974), p. 3, 16 & 29.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 123.
- Stindt (1974), p. 25, 29 & 35.
- Stindt (1974), p. 3, 24, 32 & 35.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 125, 129 & 136.
- Dickinson (1974), p. 136.
- Stindt (1974), p. 33.
- "Dirty Harry - Rooftop Rider". YouTube.
- Borden, Stanley T. (1963). Railroads of Eureka. The Western Railroader.
- Codoni, Fred; Trimble, Paul C. (2006). Northwestern Pacific Railroad. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 0-7385-3121-9.
- Dickinson, A. Bray (1974). Narrow Gauge to the Redwoods. Corona del Mar, CA.: Trans-Anglo Books.
- Fox, Wesley (1983). Northwestern Pacific Pictorial. Naperville, Illinois: Wesley Fox. ISBN 978-0-9604-1221-1. OCLC 10073363.
- Koch, Michael (1971). The Shay locomotive: Titan of the Timber. Denver, CO.: The World Press. ASIN B0006WIHIE. OCLC 637411163.
- Stindt, Fred A. (1974). Trains to the Russian River. Pacific Coast Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society.
- Stindt, Fred A. (1978) . The Northwestern Pacific Railroad: Redwood Empire Route (3rd ed.). Redwood City, CA.: Fred A. Stindt. ASIN B0007F4A2M. OCLC 458861017.
- Stindt, Fred A. (1985). The Northwestern Pacific Railroad, 1964-1985. 2. Kelseyville, CA.: Fred A. Stindt. ISBN 978-0-9615-4650-2.
- Carranco, Lynwood (1982). Redwood Lumber Industry. San Marino, California: Golden West Books. ISBN 0-87095-084-3.
- Drury, George H. (2000). The Historical Guide to North American Railroads. Kalmbach Publishing, Co. ISBN 978-0-89024-356-5.
- Drury, George H. (1984). The Train-Watcher's Guide to North American Railroads. Waukesha, Wisconsin: Kalmbach Publishing. ISBN 0-89024-061-2.
- Kneiss, Gilbert H. (1956). Redwood Railways. Berkeley, California: Howell-North.
- Lewis, Edward A. (1996). American Shortline Railway Guide (5th ed.). Waukesha, Wisconsin: Kalmbach Publishing. ISBN 0-89024-290-9.
- Robertson, Donald B. (1998). Encyclopedia of Western Railroad History - Volume IV - California. Caldwell, Idaho: The Caxton Printers. ISBN 0-87004-385-4.
- Sievers, Wald & Stindt, Fred A. (1969). N.W.P. Narrow Gauge. The Western Railroader.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Northwestern Pacific Railroad.|
- North Coast Railroad Authority Current owner of the new Northwestern Pacific
- Northwestern Pacific Railroad Historical Society A non-profit California corporation dedicated to preserving the heritage of Redwood Empire railroading
- Railroads and the Redwood Empire NWP Pictures
- Northwestern Pacific Today A record of the rehabilitation and operation of the NWP starting in 2009
- Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network A social network dedicated to sharing the heritage of Redwood Empire railroading
- Northwestern Pacific Railroad Company The official website of the Northwestern Pacific Railroad
- Video footage of the Eel River flood
- An NWP official's account of flood damage