Northwestern Pacific Railroad

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Northwestern Pacific Railroad
Reporting mark NWP
Locale California's North Coast from Marin County to Eureka
Dates of operation 1907–present
Successor Southern Pacific Transportation Company
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge ; 80 miles (130 km) of system originally 3 ft (914 mm)
Headquarters Schellville, California
Website http://www.northcoastrailroad.org

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. There are portions of the line still intact 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.

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 proposed commuter railroad. The Schellville–Ignacio and Healdsburg–Eureka portions are owned by the North Coast Railroad Authority.

The NWP's current locomotive roster includes an ex-Burlington Northern GP9, numbered NWP 1922, leased from Bruggere and Monson (BUGX), and a Tier-3 hybrid "Genset" locomotive, numbered NWP 2009 and purchased from Railpower Technologies. The BUGX 1322, a former AT&SF GP7 #2699, built in 1952 and leased from BUGX, is used as a reserve unit.

The NWP was started in the late 1800s as a combined enterprise between the Santa Fe and Southern Pacific railroads, who both realized only one railroad would be profitable in the Eel River canyon. The two railroads bought and combined 43 different railroads to create the Northwestern Pacific and achieve a single railroad by 1914. Gauges ranged from 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge to 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge, and even included an early wooden steam monorail in Sonoma, California. In 1936, the Santa Fe sold its interests to the SP, which assumed full control.

Beginning in 1990, public interests began snatching up bits and pieces of the "Southern End," or from Willits to Schellville. The North Coast Railroad Authority was born by government action in the late 1980s to save the NWP from abandonment. The SP officially sold the last of the entire line in 1995, the same year all operations ended north of Willits. In 1996 the "reborn" NWP began operations, but poor management, lack of sufficient motive power and high costs led the line to fall apart. In 1999, the Federal Railroad Administration gave an emergency order that closed the line.

In July 2011, the Federal Railroad Administration emergency order was lifted, allowing freight trains to resume service.

Train at Santa Rosa, California in 1911.
NWP #1922 near Petaluma, California, October 21, 2011
Vegetation encroaches on Swauger Creek trestle near Loleta.

History[edit]

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.

Revenue freight traffic, in millions of net ton-miles (P&SR not incl)
Year Traffic
1925 150
1944 348
1960 604
1970 421
Source: ICC annual reports

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. It did not pick up again until World War II, which created a great demand for freight shipment. 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.[1]:57 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, when the downturn in the lumber market[citation needed] and strong trucking competition led to a decline in use of the railroad, which by this time had fewer carloads than ever before.

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 merged with the NCRA on April 30, 1996.

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, when money problems and management issues caused the line to fail. The line was also shut down due to unsafe operating conditions including washouts and bridge instability, which made even slow track speeds dangerous.

In 2001, the NWP resumed service for a month between Schellville and Cotati, but was shut down under the first and only Emergency Order issued by the Federal Railroad Administration.

Beginning as early as 2009, the NCRA began to rebuild and repair the NWP between Schellville and Windsor, and in July 2011 it resumed light freight service between those two points after many legal hurdles. Trains today on the NWP run from the Lombard interchange with the California Northern Railroad, up to Windsor. Currently shipments over the NWP by various customers include grain and lumber transloads. Trains also include construction equipment and supplies for the SMART train, a planned commuter railroad between Windsor and San Rafael on the NWP right-of-way.

Plans for the future of NWP freight include rebuilding the line to Healdsburg around 2014, and Willits by 2020, dependent mostly on state and federal grants and income to the NCRA and NWPco.[2] The Eel River Canyon segment is still on the drawing board while awaiting a decision whether or not to rebuild the segment, due to extreme costs and a lack of possible business. Multiple tourist companies are interested in possibly opening an excursion and dinner train that would traverse Humboldt and Arcata bays, but are facing many legal hurdles and financial issues.[citation needed]

Predecessor lines[edit]

Northwestern Pacific Railroad
Technical
Line length 462.6 km (287.4 mi)
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Route map
Northwestern Pacific Railroad main line
462.6
Samoa
461.1
California State Route 255
455.8
Mad River Slough
449.8
Arcata
447.4
Gannon
444.6
Bracut
441.8
Brainard
438.8
Freshwater Slough
438.0
California State Route 255
436.4
Eureka
430.4
Elk River
426.3
South Bay
424.0
U.S. Route 101
418.9
Salmon Creek
416.8
Tunnel 40
415.4
Loleta
414.9
Swauger Creek & Eel River Dr
411.7
Fernbridge
408.4
U.S. Route 101
407.6
Fortuna
405.7
Strong's Creek
405.0
Rohnerville
402.1
Alton
400.6
Van Duzen River
396.2
Stone
393.0
Nanning Creek
391.7
U.S. Route 101
391.6
Yoder
391.5
Wildwood Avenue
390.8
Scotia
387.9
Glynn
385.6
U.S. Route 101
384.2
Stitz Creek
376.8
Tunnel 39
376.3
Panther Creek
375.7
Shively Creek
374.8
Shively
371.8
Tunnel 38
369.0
Larabee Creek
368.5
Larabee
365.1
Weber Creek
361.8
Eel River
361.5
South Fork
359.8
Dyerville Loop Road
356.2
Tunnel 37
350.2
Sonoma Creek
347.9
Tunnel 36
346.6
Tunnel 35
345.0
Tunnel 34
342.0
Eel Rock
336.6
Brock Creek
328.4
Fort Seward
321.8
Tunnel 31
320.5
Fort Seward Creek
317.1
Tunnel 30
316.2
Alderpoint
315.4
Zenia Road
312.2
Eel River
303.3
Tunnel 29
302.3
Kekawaka
301.8
Kekawaka Creek
301.5
Tunnel 28
300.5
Queatchumpah Creek
294.9
Quarry Spur
294.0
Tunnel 27
293.3
Eel River
293.0
Island Mountain
282.8
Tunnel 24
277.8
Bell Springs Creek
276.7
Bell Springs
274.8
Tunnel 23
274.4
Blue Rock Creek
269.8
Spy Rock
268.5
Tunnel 22
266.8
Shell Rock Creek
263.4
Tunnel 21
262.6
Nashmead
262.3
Tunnel 20
256.2
Woodman Creek
256.1
Tunnel 18
255.6
Woodman
252.8
Tunnel 17
249.6
Berger Creek
249.0
Tunnel 16
248.2
Dos Rios
243.6
Tunnel 15
239.3
Tunnel 14
237.2
Outlet Creek
234.8
Farley
233.5
Outlet Creek
233.3
Outlet Creek
231.6
Outlet Creek
231.4
Tunnel 13
225.8
Longvale
225.1
Outlet Creek
223.6
Outlet Creek
222.8
U.S. Route 101
221.8
Tunnel 12
220.6
Outlet Creek
218.9
Outlet Creek
218.2
Outlet Creek
217.4
Outlet Creek
214.9
Outlet Creek
214.7
Tunnel 11
210.7
Outlet Creek
207.8
Little Lake
205.0
Willits
200.5
U.S. Route 101
194.9
U.S. Route 101
191.9
Ridge
180.2
Laughlin
177.5
Russian River
177.2
Redwood Valley
174.6
California State Route 20
174.6
Russian River
173.8
Calpella
169.0
Norlake
167.4
Ackerman Creek
167.1
Presswood
166.1
U.S. Route 101
164.2
Ukiah
160.5
U.S. Route 101
158.4
Robinson Creek
142.0
Hopland
141.4
Feliz Creek
139.6
U.S. Route 101
133.6
Tunnel 9
132.2
Tunnel 8 Squaw Rock
128.4
Commiskey Creek
124.4
Tunnel 7
122.6
Tunnel 6
121.0
U.S. Route 101
118.8
Tunnel 5
118.1
Cloverdale
111.9
Asti
105.0
Omus
103.1
Geyserville
96.8
Lytton
90.6
Healdsburg
90.0
Russian River
89.3
Bailhache
88.3
U.S. Route 101
88.0
Grant
85.8
Old Redwood Highway
82.4
Windsor
79.3
Shiloh
77.0
Mark West Creek
75.4
Fulton
67.9
Santa Rosa
67.5
Santa Rosa Creek
67.3
California State Route 12
62.9
Todd Rd
59.7
U.S. Route 101
55.6
Cotati
47.4
Crown
45.7
U.S. Route 101
45.4
Petaluma River
44.5
Park Siding
44.0
Petaluma River
43.4
Petaluma
41.9
U.S. Route 101
41.3
Petaluma River
31.9
Burdell
26.3
Novato
24.2
Novato Creek
23.1
Ignacio
22.9
California State Route 37
22.0
Novato Creek
18.1
Petaluma River
17.9
Black Point
3.6
Sonoma Creek
0.0
Schellville

Eel River Route[edit]

By 1980, freight was still running in the Eel River Canyon between Willits and Eureka, at that time the most expensive stretch of rail line to be operational and maintained in the United States.[5] Southern Pacific began cutting back its unprofitable branches and subsidiary lines. 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.

In 1984, the SP sold the north end from Willits to Eureka to Bryan Whipple, who ran it as the Eureka Southern Railroad. Although Whipple tried his best, the line was bankrupt within several years. 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 1992, what was left of the Eureka Southern was sold to the NCRA, who operated it as "North Coast Railroad" until 1995 when severe flooding of the Eel River led to an almost total washout. The north end of the NWP has not been used since 1995.

Route[edit]

NWP mileposts conform to Southern Pacific Railroad convention of distance from San Francisco:[6]

North Coast Railroad Authority[edit]

Derailed box cars remain adjacent to Outlet Creek at milepost 152 near Longvale.

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.[7]

On May 31, 2006, NCRA announced that it had selected a new operator for the 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.[8] 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.[citation needed] With Marin and Sonoma counties' Measure Q passing in 2008, the new SMART Rail is being planned between Larkspur and Cloverdale. Operation is expected to commence in 2016.

The NCRA and Northwestern Pacific Railroad 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. Work forces began tie and ballast reconstruction from Schellville to Windsor in 2009, and electric crews have replaced and worked on many of the railroad crossings. When the freight service comes back, the North Coast Rail Authority will run trains of eight cars or fewer, and carry no hazardous materials. Reballasting and replacement of bad ties between Schellville and Windsor was completed by October 2009, with Federal Railroad Authority (FRA) inspections due to be 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 will share some trackage. This ruling was reversed in November 2010, but the two authorities still must complete a joint-operating agreement before freight service can begin. NCRA hopes to have freight service resume all the way up to Willits by the year 2020, which would permit a reconnection with the California Western Railway.

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. At Napa, the railroad has been exchanging freight with the California Northern Railroad in American Canyon.

Roster[edit]

Steam locomotives[edit]

Number Builder Type Date Works number Notes
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 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 destroyed by boiler explosion 1915[9]:44
7 Booth 4-4-0 1870 15 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #3 retired 1920
8 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1881 5485 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #8 retired 1925
9 Grant Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1883 1664 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #9 reboilered 1917 retired 1938[9]:53 & 72
10 Grant Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1883 1665 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #10 reboilered 1917 scrapped 1937[9]:72
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 retired 1926[9]:53
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 reboilered 1915 retired 1926[9]:72
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 scrapped 1935[9]:72-73[10]:33
18 Rogers Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1889 4154 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #16 wrecked 1910[9]:48
19 Rogers Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1884 3305 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #12 reboilered 1917 scrapped 1937[9]:52
20 Rogers Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1884 3306 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #13 reboilered ~1916 retired ~1932[9]:58 & 72
21 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1904 24035 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #24 scrapped 1937[9]:71
22-23 American Locomotive Company 4-4-0 1908 44959-44960 scrapped 1938[9]:70–71 and 1949[9]:41 & 71[10]:28
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[9]:44
101 Rogers Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1889 4212 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #18 scrapped 1928
102 Grant Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1888 ex-San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad #15 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 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[9]:69[10]:37
109 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1900 18179 ex-California Northwestern Railroad #30 scrapped 1948[10]:35
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 #112 preserved California State Railroad Museum[9]:73[10]:33
#114 wrecked 1946[9]:52&59[10]:37 #111 & 113 scrapped 1949 and 1947[9]:53
130-133 American Locomotive Company 4-6-0 1910 49089-49092 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[10]:36–37
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[10]:34
178 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1906 29726 ex-Bullfrog Goldfield #13 > #11 purchased 1917 scrapped 1954[10]:33–35
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 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[11]
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[edit]

Number Builder Type Date Works number Notes
1922 EMD GP9 8/1957 22740 5505-21 [1] Nee NP 337, Exx BN 1922, Ex BNSF 1628. In Service out of Schellville. Painted in SP Bloody Nose colors.
2009 Railpower RP20BD 12/2007 19234 5321-B29 Leased RJ Corman; In Service out of Schellville. Built as UP GP9B #158B in 2/1954.
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.
70 Electro-Motive Diesel GP7 5/1953 18418 5250-10 ex-NCRR 70; ex-EUKA 70; ex-CCT 70; née RDG 618 1996 1998 stored out of service (Eureka, CA)
2872 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1956 22897 ? ex-NCRR 2872; ex-SP 2872 1996 1998 stored out of service (Eureka, CA)
3190 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1955 19980 ? ex-NCRR 3190; ex-SP 3190 1996 1998 stored out of service (Eureka, CA)
3779 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1957 22922 ? ex-NCRR 3779; ex-SP 3779 1996 1998 stored out of service (Eureka, CA)
3786 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1957 22945 ? ex-NCRR 3786; ex-SP 3786 1996 c.1998 disposition unknown
3804 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1957 22943 ? ex-NCRR 3804; ex-SP 3804 1996 c.1998 disposition unknown
3825 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9 4/1959 25133 5595-34 ex-SP 3825; ex-SP 3696; née SP 5833 1996 ? to OMLX 3825; out of service (Loveland, CO)
3840 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 2/1959 25146 5596-2 ex-SP 3840; ex-SP 3654; née TNO 450 1996 199x to OMLX 3840; to RailServe (Prentiss, AB) 3840, 2000
3844 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9 1959 25137 ? ex-SP 3844; ex-SP 3700; née SP 5837 1996 1997 wrecked, 1997; Stored out of service (Willits, California)
3850 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9 1959 25116 ? ex-SP 3850; ex-SP 3679; née SP 5816 1996 1997 wrecked, 1997; Stored Out of Service (Willits California)
3857 Electro-Motive Diesel GP9E 1959 25139 ? ex-NCRR 3857; ex-SP 3857 1996 1998 stored out of service (Eureka, California)
4323 Electro-Motive Diesel SD9 1954 19440 ? ex-SP 4323; ex-SP 3812; née SP 5351 ? c.1998 disposition unknown
4324 Electro-Motive Diesel SD9 1954 19441 5322-13 ex-SP 4324; ex-SP 3813; née SP 5352 1996 ? to OMLX 4324
4327 Electro-Motive Diesel SD9 1955 20229 ex-SP 4327; ex-SP 3856; née SP 5378 1996 ? to OMLX 4327 Now Great Western of Colorado 4327 (still in NWP Paint as of 1FEB14)
4423 Electro-Motive Diesel SD9 1956 21297 5435-9 ex-SP 4423; ex-SP 3946; née SP 5472 1996 ? to OMLX 4423
5305 Electro-Motive Diesel SD9 1957 22808 ? nee DRGW 5305 1996 ? to OMLX 5305
6595 Electro-Motive Diesel GP35 1964 29569 ? OMLX 6595; ex-SP 6595; née SP 7483:1 1996 1996 to OMLX 6595, 1996; to HBRY 2502, 1997
6600 Electro-Motive Diesel GP35 1964 29705 ? OMLX 6600; ex-SP 6600; née SP 7703 1996 1996 to OMLX 6600, 1996; to HBRY 2503, 1997

Narrow Gauge Line[edit]

Mesa Grande station was served by dual-gauge track.

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 12 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.[9]: 11,13,19,26,28 & 30

Route[edit]

Mileposts conform to Southern Pacific Railroad convention of distance from San Francisco.[1]:88–89

  • Milepost 11.7 - tunnel 1
  • Milepost 20.7 - tunnel 2
  • Milepost 27 - bridge over Paper Mill Creek and highway[12]:113
  • Milepost 35.6 - Arroyo San Geronimo trestle[9]:22
  • Milepost 50.5 - bridge over Keyes Creek[12]:150
  • Milepost 51.9 - tunnel 3[12]:34
  • Milepost 53.7 - tunnel 4
  • Milepost 61.9 - Ebabias Creek trestle
  • Milepost 62.2 - Bodega Road crossing[9]:17[12]:147
  • 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)[9]:14[12]:5,36 & 96
  • Milepost 68.7 - Maquire Creek trestle
  • 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 84.3 - Cazadero[9]:10[12]:67,70,109 & 118 The D.H. McEwen Lumber Company operated narrow gauge 2-cylinder Shay locomotive C/N 1823 at Cazadero briefly beginning in 1906.[13]:422

Locomotives[edit]

Number Builder Type Date Works number Notes[9]:78[12]:132–133
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[12]:134
84 NPC Sausalito Shop 4-4-0 1900 1 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #20 retired 1920 scrapped 1924[9]:16[12]:129
85 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1884 7249 ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #14 wrecked[9]:34[12]:120
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[12]:123 & 135
87 Baldwin Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1880 4960 ex-South Pacific Coast Railroad #10 then NWP #10>#87 scrapped 1917[9]:25 & 33[12]:135
90 Brooks Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1891 1886 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #15 operated last narrow gauge NWP train in 1930 scrapped 1935[9]:10,16,25,35 & 39[12]:124
91 Brooks Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1894 2421 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #16 scrapped 1935[12]:6 & 135<[9]:9,16,18,29 & 34
92 Brooks Locomotive Works 4-4-0 1891 1885 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #14 retired 1926 scrapped 1935[9]:3,16 & 29[12]:129
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[12]:123>[9]:25,29 & 35
95 Brooks Locomotive Works 4-6-0 1899 3418 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #18 then NWP #145>#95 retired 1929 scrapped 1935[9]:3,24,32 & 35[12]:125, 129 & 136
195 Baldwin Locomotive Works 2-6-0 1883 6611 ex-NPC/NS/NWP #13 scrapped 1912[12]:136
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[12]:135
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[9]:33

Railroad in film[edit]

The Northwestern Pacific Railroad was featured in films, used from backgrounds to on-board filming, most notably is Alfred Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt, which was filmed in downtown Santa Rosa, California in the summer of 1942, using the stone depot and railroad yard as a background.

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 the Santa Rosa NWP depot were used as backdrops for multiple scenes throughout the movie.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Stindt, Fred A. (1978). The Northwestern Pacific Railroad: Redwood Empire Route (3rd Edition ed.). Kelseyville, California: Fred A. Stindt. ASIN: B0007F4A2M. 
  2. ^ Martin, Nicole and Sobelman, Donald (11/20/2014) "Federal Preemption May Be The Key For Calif. Railroads" Barg Coffin Lewis & Trapp, LLP
  3. ^ a b c Borden, Stanley T. (1963). Railroads of Eureka. The Western Railroader. 
  4. ^ Codoni, Fred; Trimble, Paul C. (2006). Northwestern Pacific Railroad. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 0-7385-3121-9. 
  5. ^ 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. 
  6. ^ Gale, V.J. and Valles, R.C.(Roadmasters) (1978). (untitled maintenance-of-way charts). Southern Pacific Railroad. 
  7. ^ 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. 
  8. ^ North Coast Railroad Authority (2006-05-31). "NCRA Approves Operator Contract". Retrieved 2009-12-12. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am Fred A. Stindt (1974). Trains to the Russian River. Pacific Coast Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i Fred A. Stindt (1985). The Northwestern Pacific Railroad, 1964-1985. Stindt Books. ISBN 978-0-9615465-0-2. 
  11. ^ Koch, Michael (1971). The Shay Locomotive Titan of the Timber. The World Press. p. 412. 
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad Dickinson, A. Bray (1974). Narrow Gauge to the Redwoods. Corona del Mar, California: Trans-Anglo Books. 
  13. ^ Michael Koch (1971). The Shay locomotive: titan of the timber. World Press. 

Additional reading[edit]

External links[edit]