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Thread: Tehachapi, California

  1. Default Tehachapi, California

    Site: Tehachapi, California

    Nearest City: Bakersfield, Ca. 30 miles northwest & Los Angeles 100 miles south

    Location: California DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer

    Directions: From Bakersfield head south on State Route 58 about 30 miles to the town of Tehachapi population 6,000

    Description: This is said to be the busiest & most famous mountain railroad pass in the US, featuring steep grades, numerous tunnels, & the Tehachapi Loop, an engineering marvel where freight trains circle over themselves as they climb a steep mountain grade. The tracks are owned & operated by UP; BNSF trains operate on trackage rights. There is no passenger service on this line, unless they detour through Tehachapi due to a derailment or track work.

    Type of Operation: Heavy CTC controlled single track & double track mountain railroad with multiple helper locomotives.

    Typical Motive Power: Anything on UP'S & BNSF'S roster can be seen.

    Peak Operating Hours: Freight traffic tends to be busiest late in the week & weekends. Midday maintenance lulls are not unusual; they are planned to avoid the normal rush of morning intermodals.

    Approximate Daily Train Frequency: 50 to 60 trains per day

    Radio Frequencies: UP: 160.320, both UP & BNSF use this channel

    Nearby Points of Interest: Cajon Pass is 90 minutes drive to the southeast; Barstow is a 90 minute drive east. Bakersfield is the closest Amtrak stop & has a shortline called San Joaquin Valley Railroad. Also the BNSF & UP lines diverge 17 miles east in the town of Mojave, population 4,000, which has several motels & restaurants.

    Remarks: Much of the trackage in Tehachapi Pass is surrounded by private ranch land, & owners are generally tolerant of railfans who do not litter & who leave cattle alone & respect locked gates. There are motels & restaurants in the town of Tehachapi & in nearby Mojave. To get to the loop take Keene exit off State Route 58 & follow the signs. Stop at Keene store for further directions or to pick up something to eat or drink. The town of Tehachapi has restaurants, lodging, & all services.

    Safety Considerations: Stay off the tracks, stay off the highway bridge on the west side of Tehachapi, & watch for snakes in the summer months. Hot weather also brings increased fire danger; do not park your vehicle in tall grass, & extinguish all smoking materials.

    References: Trains on Location January 1996

    Photo #1. BNSF Eastbound Intermodal Train at Tehachapi, Ca.

    Photo #2. BNSF Eastbound Intermodal Train at Caliente, Ca.

    Photo #3. BNSF Eastbound Intermodal Train at Tehachapi, Ca.

    Photo #4. BNSF Westbound Freight Train at Bakersfield, Ca.



    Remarks
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  2. Default

    Photo #5. UP Westbound Intermodal Train at Caliente, Ca.

    Photo #6. UP Eastbound Freight Train at Bealville, Ca.

    Photo #7. UP Eastbound Freight Train at Bealville, Ca.

    Photo #8. UP Eastbound Intermodal Train at Bealville, Ca.
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  3. Post

    Tehachapi is definitly on the list for when I head out to Los Angeles in August 2007.
    Visit, Jeff's Train Site, for pictures of freight cars, museums, excursions, 6980 different numbered locomotives and more.

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fulltritty
    Tehachapi is definitly on the list for when I head out to Los Angeles in August 2007.
    Well put Cajon on your list if you only have one day... if MOW is out on Tehachapi Loop then you'll get no trains for quite a long time.
    Eric
    RRF Photo Gallery

    It's the same things your whole life. "Clean up your room!", "Stand up straight!", "Pick up your feet!", "Take it like a man!", "Be nice to your sister!", "Don't mix beer and wine, EVER!" Oh yeah, "Don't drive on the railroad tracks!"

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fulltritty
    Tehachapi is definitly on the list for when I head out to Los Angeles in August 2007.
    I hope you rack up with plenty of action when you go & don't get burned by a maintenance blitz or the weather. Tehachapi, Cajon, Ludlow, Ash Hill, Klondike, Siberia, Ibis, & Daggett are my favorite places that I've been in California so far, but I'm sure there are plenty of other places in California, particularly in the northern part of the state that have some great places for trains in beautiful scenery
    Last edited by William H. Davis Jr.; 05-18-2006 at 05:13 PM.

  6. Post

    Cool, I will put Cjon on the list too. There are so many things I want to see when I am out there, I may only have one or two days for railfanning.
    Visit, Jeff's Train Site, for pictures of freight cars, museums, excursions, 6980 different numbered locomotives and more.

  7. Default

    I was at Bakersfield & Caliente in March which I enjoy much better then the loop itself. You can see my pix of the trip by ckicking on the below link then clicking on the Match 2006 S. California gallery

    http://vgalleries.com/members/railfan1/The+Trainfan.vrg


    Living nearby to MP 186 of the UPRR Austin TX Sub

  8. Default

    May I suggest Barstow, W. Colton & W. Riverside as real cool places as well in S. California. They are some of my do not miss places on each trip. Please click on the below link & then any of the S. California galleries to see those spots. Naturally Cajon/Daggett are not to be missed. I think after being to Daggett you get spoiled to see any other spot as you always compare it to Daggett.

    http://vgalleries.com/members/railfan1/The+Trainfan.vrg


    Quote Originally Posted by William H. Davis Jr.
    I hope you rack up with plenty of action when you go & don't get burned by a maintenance blitz or the weather. Tehachapi, Cajon, Ludlow, Ash Hill, Klondike, Siberia, Ibis, & Daggett are my favorite places that I've been in California so far, but I'm sure there are plenty of other places in California, particularly in the northern part of the state that have some great places for trains in beautiful scenery


    Living nearby to MP 186 of the UPRR Austin TX Sub

  9. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by spbed
    I was at Bakersfield & Caliente in March which I enjoy much better then the loop itself. You can see my pix of the trip by ckicking on the below link then clicking on the Match 2006 S. California gallery

    http://vgalleries.com/members/railfan1/The+Trainfan.vrg
    That's great, I'll have to check out your photos, thanks for the information & link

  10. #10

    Default

    here's a few photos of me and my girlfriend's trip to the loop on the july 4th weekend of 2006.

    camping is available reletively nearby at red rock canyon state park, which i highly recommend--the cliffs just beyond the campsites are drop dead beautiful. yes, it's hot in the summertime but you can just drive forty minutes or so to the loop to watch trains in the shade.

    sorry for the big smudge in one of my pics, but it gives you an idea of what the trains look like rounding the loop.

    photo one--a northboud intemodal rounds the loop

    photo two--a southbound UP mixed freight waits for a northbound train to pass

    photo three--southbound power emerges from tunnel 9(?)

    photo four--our campsite at red rock canyon state park, a little less than an hour south of the tehachapi loop
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    Last edited by shekky; 01-31-2007 at 09:40 AM.

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