Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

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All Blog Posts (204)

Mow at San Rafael today

Added by Richard C. Brand on March 26, 2019 at 11:08pm — 4 Comments

Napa Valley Wine Train gets $1.7M grant to green the popular tourist line

Napa's Wine Train receives a $1.7M grant to purchase a low pollution Diesel locomotive per the North Bay Business Journal.

I'll be interested to learn what they purchase.  It won't have to go fast on that roadbed.

Some of you may remember that last year they acquired that used Chessie loco.

Sorry I can't provide a URL.  My mail computer is down.

Added by Richard C. Brand on February 8, 2019 at 4:25pm — 4 Comments

Northwestern Pacific Railroad president John Williams dies

Subject: Railroad executive, consultant John Williams dies

Date: Thu, 20 Dec 2018 23:30:18 -0800

From: Gene Poon <>


Subject: Railroad executive, consultant John Williams dies

Date: Thu, 20 Dec 2018

Railroad executive, consultant John Williams dies

By Steve Glischinski December 20, 2018

PALO ALTO, Calif. – John H. Williams, president of the Northwestern Pacific Railroad and…


Added by Gene Poon on December 20, 2018 at 11:36pm — No Comments

Steam action in ABQ, NM

In todays newspaper! Hope the link works!

Steam action in ABQ, NM! In todays paper! Hope the link works!…


Added by Bob Burns on August 23, 2018 at 9:44pm — No Comments

"Daylighting" tunnels (for old timers)

My brother and I were watching an old movie that brought up the subject of NWPRR.  In our discussion of my father's time on the  NWP, it came up that he spent a lot of time along the Eel River around Bell Springs "daylighting" tunnels, which is cutting the top off a mountain so that it's no longer a tunnel.  This was in the late 1950's and early 1960's.

On one of those jobs he had a Cat DC6 on a mountain that was so high and so steep the DC6 could not make it up to the top on it's…


Added by Jack Encell on June 9, 2018 at 6:00pm — 5 Comments

"the Narrow Margin" TCM 9pm p.s.t. Saturday May 5.

70 min of cop trying to get female witness to court, 60 min of which are aboard a passenger train where fellow travelers have other ideas about his assignment. Charlie McGraw excellent as the cop w/ a plate load of less than diplomatic rail borne inter-acting w/ unsavorys.

Added by steve lang on May 3, 2018 at 6:21pm — No Comments

SPCRR Fund Raising for Run Around

Society for the Preservation of Carter Car Resources, SPCRR, is asking for donations to fund the construction of a siding to run their locomotives around the trains at their Car Barn site at Ardenwood Farm a public park in Newark CA.  More information can be found on their website at

Added by Paul Gardner on April 3, 2018 at 10:21am — 1 Comment

Baldwin Road Switchers (SP only)

At least a few of these visited the NWP, so I compiled this info on them. 

(Also: If anyone knows how to reach My Espee Modeller's Archive, I would be more than willing to send them this info. I have tried, but it never reaches through their email.)

(MU means Multiple Unit Control)

SP AS-616:

Delivered in two batches, 5228-5249 and 5250-5278.…


Added by Ian B. on March 25, 2018 at 9:00pm — 2 Comments

Could reopening the line between Cloverdale and Redwood Valley be less expensive?

I know this might be a far fetched idea, but would reactivating the corridor between Redwood Valley and Cloverdale be less expensive than trying to reopen the line to South Fork? Judging by the pictures I've seen of the Russian River Canyon, all the tracks need is ballast filled in and brush removed. The tunnels are in great shape too, (Except tunnel #4, was that the one that caught fire?) but could that be fixed? Also, maybe CWR could take advantage of this as well, and run their…


Added by Emilio Galo on March 19, 2018 at 2:33pm — 5 Comments

The SD7's

I gathered as much information about the SD7's as I could. What I have is here.

Used up and down the NWP until about 1970. The beloved Caddilacs replaced these on the system until SP closed up shop. All were used as road switchers from Eureka to San Francisco. They operated up and down the line until they were shoved to switching service in SP's West Colton, Taylor, Roseville and Eugene yards. There is but one exception to this, however...

These are the units I identified from…


Added by Ian B. on January 11, 2018 at 12:16pm — 4 Comments

Yreka RR/ Yreka Western RR ~CLUES~

by way of what some locals say + my own observations late june 2017: a steam enjine was moved from Yreka shops (S of passenger station & effectively W end of the line) to the E end of the line (Montague) & junction w/ Central Oregon & Pacific RR (C.O.R.P.) (main N/S CPRR, SPRR, UPRR). from there it went far E to a museum &/or tour line. a switch enjine that had been on a siding @ the industrial park was used to do the 5 mile push &/or pull, & is no longer @ the i.p.…


Added by steve lang on December 21, 2017 at 2:15pm — 3 Comments

NWP #1922 today

It has come to my attention that 1922 hasnt been seen for a while on the main. I found this photo of 1922, 007 and 1971 sitting in the deadline at Schellville. Why is she there? Are they storing her until GGRM shows up? (I believe that is 4436 coupled to 1922.) This photo is from June, 2017.…


Added by Ian B. on October 25, 2017 at 10:30am — 10 Comments

Mike Thompson

I tried to send a note to Congressman Thompson but could not because I don't reside in has district even though I spend a lot of $$ there.

My message to him was that to rebuild Santa Rosa and Napa will require a huge amount of new lumber.  My point to him was that there needs to be emergency funding from the feds to renovate the NWP RoW ASAP to Cloverdale to allow freight trains to bring lumber down from Redwood Empire's yard to offset the potential for price gouging from yards…


Added by Richard C. Brand on October 16, 2017 at 10:57pm — 2 Comments

Alto Tunnel revived?

KPIX is reporting a meeting tonight in Marin to discuss whether to renovate this old NWP tunnel.  No plans for rail but being a bicycle rider I can attest to the value of having that tunnel available in the the old RoW, now the bicycle path out of Sausalito.

This is not tonite's video but still interesting:…


Added by Richard C. Brand on September 27, 2017 at 7:18pm — 4 Comments

New Book: The NWP, Lifeline of the Redwood Empire, Boom and Bust 1951-2001

I just received this fabulous new book and it is a must-have for all NWP fans.  Tons of crisp and clear photos, most I've never seen before.  Lots of interesting stories from railroad employees.  Lots of detailed information about the most-recent 50 years of operation!

I've got my reading to do and am looking forward to going through this great volume page by page.  I just wanted to share my enthusiasm for this new book so that others can enjoy it too.



Added by Dave S. on August 7, 2017 at 8:23am — 3 Comments

"Ring of Fire" early 60's - David Janssen, on TCM this morning

ends w/ excellent 10 minutes or so of passengers & crew fleeing 2 coaches pushed by steam lomotive stuck on trestle inferno. hostess said it was filmed in CA - OR during 2 out of control fires & all wreckage is still at the bottom of the gorge.

Added by steve lang on May 13, 2017 at 3:10pm — 3 Comments

As Test Trains Start on SMART on Friday, Quiet Zones In Effect in San Rafel and Novato

Hi All,

CBS SF Bay Area reports SMART service could start as soon as June 8th amid concerns from SMART about safety at Rail Crossings where Quiet Zone is in effect.  Video shows people from the city staff handing out flyers about safety awareness at grade crossings.

Find the Video HERE

I posted…


Added by James Caestecker on May 13, 2017 at 11:51am — 4 Comments

NWP and SP Apparel

My wife came across this site thought I would share, they have some good stuff on here from NWP, SP, and a bunch of others.

Added by Sean Purtell on May 12, 2017 at 4:42pm — 4 Comments

GGRM update from Steve Coons on FB


GGRM update: We are getting close to a move date, need to leak test 1 car get a single car test done on all cars and finish the annual insp on SP 2472 started on 6 may. The good thing is we have 5 yrs left on the boiler time on 2472 before she's due a form 4 teardown. When all this work is done ( during for 2472 ) we can then call the FRA and the UP to come and inspect our equipment, if it all passes there checks then its just a mater of arranging a move date with the UP. Stay tuned…


Added by Steve Atnip on May 7, 2017 at 8:25pm — 7 Comments

Is the Northern End still in consideration for reopening service to Eureka?

I was wondering if service would ever return to the northern end of the railroad, as they have returned to the southern portion of the line. I know it would take a lot of cash and a lot of repair work, but could it be done? I think it could be done. I would like to see trains running north again, even if it is in the distant future. 

Added by Emilio Galo on March 7, 2017 at 11:00am — 27 Comments

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