Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

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In 1998, a south bound train with $500,000 in lumber was heading south to Willits. Dispatch in Eureka sent radio call to the engineer stating that he must drop the load at Island Mountain, and get the locomotives back to Eureka ASAP- There was swinging track in the canyon. They tied this 11 car train up, and headed north. This would be the last train in the canyon, forever.

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Comment by Dave Polson on March 4, 2016 at 12:00am

About six months ago, I heard they were in the process of dredging the harbor to make it deep enough to handle the cargo ships, I didn't see any signs of the work going on though.  I've also been told that the reason they are straightening out highway 299 was so the container trucks could safely navigate it.  If indeed that is what they are doing, I am very curious of how they are going to straighten out the road between Weaverville and Junction city, there are 2 pretty sharp curves on that stretch of the highway.

Comment by Richard C. Brand on March 3, 2016 at 11:53pm

BTW this picture is a good contrast to the picture of the North Coast Daylight pictures posted here recently about that excursion stopping here.

Comment by Richard C. Brand on March 3, 2016 at 11:51pm

While I know little about the remaining forests in the north coast, I know that there is a lot of energy in the Eureka area about it becoming the most cost effect west coast container receiving port from Asia.

If that port were to be built the potential for carloads down the NWP would be an incentive to rebuild the line north of Willits.  But of course almost none, maybe none of the tunnels on the line are high enough to allow the required double high shipping containers now the norm for west coast transfer.  Bridge height?

But if you have ever taken the route from Eureka east to Redding you could understand what a challenge it would be to build a railroad over that route, especially as there is no existing rail RoW there now.

If you were a land owner on the proposed new route, how much would you demand for an easement let alone property sale?  The NCRA has a major opportunity but it will take some thinking outside of the hot box.

Comment by Dan Whitton on March 3, 2016 at 11:05pm

Cost aside of rehabilitating and maintain the line north of Willits would only 3 active lumber mills generate enough traffic to keep the line open if it were operational and support operating finances?

Comment by Dave Polson on November 24, 2015 at 10:42pm

Last time I was in Eureka, a couple weeks ago, the power units were still there, one of them has the trucks pulled out from under one end...  I know that a program to scrap/move them is in place, but not sure how fast it is happening.

Comment by Sean Mitchell on November 24, 2015 at 8:13pm

Duckman- You owe it to yourself, to just read the previous comments.

I flew into Island Mountain about 6 weeks ago, and took this photo from the aircraft. 

Access is going to be very difficult by road. The road itself is private.

This is 30 miles of Garberville.  

Comment by Dave Polson on November 24, 2015 at 7:26pm

Access to the area is going make that difficult to do.  Specially at the price of scrap steel these days.

Comment by J. Sebastien on November 24, 2015 at 7:07pm
They will most likely see a cutters torch for scrap rather than be hauled off by truck and retracked somewhere, but you never know.
Comment by Dave Polson on November 24, 2015 at 7:03pm

Google view of Island Mountain Yard.  As you can see on google maps, they are still there!

Comment by Dave Polson on November 24, 2015 at 5:10pm

Duckman, I suspect they are and will be in the same location until they rust away, there is some much track damage both north and south of the location, and very the only way to drive to the location is across private property on a dirt road.  The photo is only a month or two old.

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