Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

Dedicated to Sharing the Heritage of Redwood Empire Railroading

Fellow member Bob Burns has suggested a very good idea. Maybe a group of members from this site could go somewhere, Portola comes to mind, this spring/summer 2012. Portola has engines you can operate, and they allow four in the cab. Four people could split that cost by four. Another place that P&SRkid mentioned is Niles Canyon RR. Read the original conversation HERE-> Anyway, thought I'd post this idea as a discussion and see what interest (if any) there is in doing this? Your thoughts and suggestions are welcomed!!!

Views: 624

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Niles Canyon is easy to get to by taking highways 880 to 580 and at Dublin turning south on 680 to Sunol Road Exit.  There are a couple of restaurants in Sunol. Bowzers serves a good prime rib.  Niles Canyon Railway operates every Sunday and has special events going on all year long.  Golden State Railroad Museum operates out of there, too. They have steam specials with restored lounge car and the private car "Oakland".  We could charter one of those cars for a meet.    Paul

Sorry for the typo.  It is the Golden Gate Railroad Museum and their website is  Paul
I'd like to explore the Niles Canyon operation as well as revisit the Portola museum. Unlike other operations the Portola operation is a"hands on" facility. In other words anything in the yard is available to "play on or in" which is nice. Jeez, how long did it take for the Calif State RR Museum aquiesce to allowing people to 1. do flash photography indoors and 2. actually allowing people into the cab of the last SP Cab Forward. Seems like it took several years and probably a "few" complaints! Shhhh, don't tell anybody but during the opening of the CA ST RR Museum my wife and I were allowed a ride in the Cab of a locomotive, one of the  ones that pulled the Death Valley Scotty Special. Got to ride it out of the roundhouse onto the turntable and back, we delivered the band for the show they were on the frontend. Why you wonder? Well I saw they were operating the locomotive on compressed air and mentioned it to my wife, she said to this fella "you're running this on compressed air," he said, "you are the only one that's figured that out, you 2 get up in the cab!" That fella was "Joe" the boilermaker from the SP shops who is still known by restorers today. YES I like hands on facilities, the Nevada ST RR Museum over the hill has some nice equipment but it's hands off!  So my vote is for Niles Canyon (an overnighter for me) AND Portola, with maybe and Old Sacramento thingie thrown in for good measure!

Niles is nice and close allowing most of our members to easily show up. Portola on the other hand is a journey especially for our Humbolt members but has a lot to offer for everyone.

 I'm down for either, though the Portola trip will take some planing

I'd be down with Portola, never been there before
I vote niles canyon

Here's a link to the Portola Museum to show what they have to offer for those that haven't perused their website before.   


They also have a live webcam ( I think it's still active) so you can see what the weather looks like.


Hi Bob!

That web link you provided appears to be incorrect.  Did you mean:

Looks like a really cool museum!  $175 to run a road diesel for an hour?  Awesome!

Years ago I used to drive by Niles Canyon on the weekends to visit relatives in Fremont.  Every once in a while I would see the train operating and always meant to stop by, but never did. 

So, as far as I'm concerned, I would like to visit both museums!



"So, as far as I'm concerned, I would like to visit both museums!"


Dave S.

       Exactly what I'm saying! After all we have from April when the Portola Museum reopens to the end of October when it closes to plan that trip and the Niles visit should be a CAN DO in that timeframe also, I think anyway. We could also do a Cal ST RR Museum trip to Old Sacramento you can visit the California Car Museum there also , maybe they'd even let us pet the NWP #112 at the CA ST RR Museum! :-) Thanks for the correction on the link, I think mine was their old one, but whatever works to get to the website is good! That $175 split 4 ways isn't much for 15 minute of seat time and the balloon track is only a mile . A t couple of years ago I was there when a family went out to operate one of WP switch engines. A a young couple and about a 7 year old wide eyed boy. The trainer took them aboard for cab orientation, after the class room introduction then showed them how to  start the engine, then off they went horn a tootin and bell ringing it was quite neat to see.

My only issue is schedule , my schedule is done 6 weeks at a time so I would need to know tentative get together dates so I can request them off, this would be important for the Niles Canyon and Old Sac trips. Portola is an easy 2+ hr drive through Reno from South Tahoe so that's a day tripper for me.

Actually Niles wouldn't have to wait until next year depending of their days and hours of operation

I've been trying to find and scan my pics, from when the early NWP Historical and Tech Society, did a trip to Old Sac, with Fred Stindt, and we got to get up close and personal with NWP 112 ! Fred even had it moved out on the Turntable, for a photo op ! A GREAT, day trip !!!! ( early 80's ? )....


Those photos would be great to see! No reason we can't do a "meet" there!

Bob B.

Gary, you actually met Fred Stindt, THE Fred Stindt? His NWP books have been my favorites since I was a kid! Stindt is the reason we still have NWP 112, so it doesn't come as a suprise that he can have it moved where he wants. Is Fred still with us, or has he passed away?



Zachary M. Toler


© 2019   Created by Mark Drury.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service