The Whipple 35th Parallel Railroad Survey: Mohave Indians

The Whipple 35th Parallel Railroad Survey, led by Lieutenant Amiel Weeks Whipple in 1853, was a pivotal expedition to explore a potential transcontinental railroad route along the 35th parallel from Fort Smith, Arkansas, to Los Angeles, California. Commissioned by Secretary of War Jefferson Davis, the survey aimed to assess the feasibility of the railroad, gather scientific data, and document interactions with Native American tribes, significantly contributing to the understanding and development of the American West.

Excerpt from – Harper’s New Monthly Magazine
The Tribes of the Thirty-Fifth Parallel

September 1858
VOL. XVII.–No. 100

Mohaves

Leaving the beautiful valley of the Chemehuevis, we presently find our friends among the shrewd, sprightly, and hospitable Mojaves. On the 25th of February, they were honored by a visit of ceremony from a pompous old chief of the Mojaves, who presented credentials from Major Heintzelman.–The Major wrote that the bearer, Captain Francisco, had visited Fort Yuma, with a party of warriors, while on an expedition against the Cocopas, and that he had professed friendship; but Americans were advised not to trust him.

The parade and ceremony with which the visit was set off were not, in this instance, altogether vain and idle, for without them that august personage, Captain Francisco, might easily have been mistaken for the veriest[sic] beggar of his tribe. He was old, shriveled, ugly, and naked-but for a strip of dirty cloth suspended by a cord from his loins and an old black hat, band-less and torn, drawn down to his eyes. But his credentials were satisfactory, and he was received with all the honors and installed in a stately manner on a blanket. The object of the expedition was explained to him, and he cordially promised aid and comfort. A few trinkets, some tobacco, and red blankets cut into narrow strips were then presented for distribution among the warriors. The chief would accept nothing for himself, so the council was dissolved. The Mojave chiefs look upon foreign gifts in a national light and accept them only in the name of the people.

Savedra counted six hundred Indians in camp, of whom probably half had brought bags of meal or baskets of corn for sale. The market was opened, and all were crowding, eager to be the first at the stand, amidst shouts, laughter, and a confusion of tongues-English, Spanish, and Indian.

When the trading was concluded, the Mojave people sauntered about the camp in picturesque and merry groups, making the air ring with peals of laughter. Some of the young men selected a level spot, forty paces in length, for a play-ground, and amused themselves with their favorite game of hoop-and-poles. The hoop is six inches in diameter, and made of elastic cord; the poles are straight, and about fifteen feet in length. Rolling the hoop from one end of the course toward the other, two of the players chase it half-way, and at the same time throw their poles. He who succeeds in piercing the hoop wins the game.

Target-firing and archery were then practiced–the exploring party using rifles and Colt’s pistols, and the Indians shooting arrows.

The fire-arms were triumphant; and at last an old Mojave, mortified at the discomfiture of his people, ran in a pet and tore down the target. Notwithstanding the unity of language, the family resemblance, and amity between the Cuchans and Mojaves, a jealousy, similar to that observed among Pimas and Maricopas, continually disturbs their friendship. A squaw detected her little son in the act of concealing a trinket that he fancied. She snatched the bauble from him with a blow and a taunt, saying, “Oh, you Cuchan!” Some one inquired if he belonged to that tribe. “Oh no,” she replied ” he is a Mojave, but behaves like a Cuchan, whose trade is stealing !” Nevertheless, the Cuchans are welcomed by the Mojaves wherever they go.

These Indians are probably in as wild a state of nature as any tribe on American territory.

They have not had sufficient intercourse with any civilized people to acquire a knowledge of their language or their vices. It was said that no white party had ever before passed through their country without encountering hostility.

Nevertheless they appear intelligent, and to have naturally amiable dispositions. The men are tall, erect, and well-proportioned; their features inclined to European regularity; their eyes large, shaded by long lashes, and surrounded by circles of blue pigment, that add to their apparent size. The apron, or breech-cloth, for men, and a short petticoat, made of strips of the inner bark of cotton-wood, for women, are the only articles of dress deemed indispensable; but many of the females have long robes, or cloaks, of fur. The young girls wear heads.

When married, their chins are tattooed with vertical blue lines, and they wear a necklace with a single sea-shell in front, curiously wrought.

Those shells are very ancient, and esteemed of great value.

From time to time they rode into the camp, mounted on spirited horses; their bodies and limbs painted and oiled, so as to present the appearance of highly-polished mahogany. The dandies paint their faces perfectly black. Warriors add a streak of red across the forehead nose, and chin. Their ornaments consist of leathern bracelets, adorned with bright buttons, and worn on the left arm; a kind of tunic, made of buckskin fringe, hanging from the shoulders; beautiful eagles’ feathers, called “sormeh”–sometimes white, sometimes of a crimson tint-tied to a lock of hair, and floating from the top of the head; and, finally, strings of wampum, made of circular pieces of shell, with holes in the centre, by which they are strung, often to the length of several yards, and worn in coils about the neck.

These shell beads, which they call “pook,” are their substitute for money, and the wealth of an individual is estimated by the “pook” cash he possesses. Among the Cuchans, in 1852, a foot of “pook” was equal in value to a horse; and divisions to that amount are made by the insertion of blue stones, such as by Coronado and Alargon were called “turkoises,” [turquoise] and are now found among ancient Indian ruins.

The Mojave rancherias are surrounded by granaries filled with corn, mesquite beans, and tortillas. The houses are constructed with an eye to durability and warmth. They are built upon sandy soil, and are thirty or forty feet square; the sides, about two feet thick, of wicker-work and straw; the roofs matched, covered with earth, and supported by a dozen cottonwood posts. Along the interior walls are ranged large earthen pots, filled with stores of corn, beans, and flour, for daily use. In front is a wide shed, a sort of piazza, nearly as large as the house itself. Here they find shelter from rain and sun. Within, around a small fire in the centre, they sleep. But their favorite resort seems to be the roof, where could usually be counted from twenty to thirty persons, all apparently at home. Near the houses were a great number of cylindrical structures, with conical roofs, quite skillfully made of osiers; these were the granaries, alluded to above, for their surplus stores of corn and mesquite.

As the explorers passed these rancherias, the women and children watched them from the house-tops; and the young men, for the moment, suspended their sport with hoop and poles. At first only a few of the villagers seemed inclined to follow them, but at length their little train swelled to an army a mile in length.

On the 27th of February, being favored with a clear and calm morning, they hastened to take advantage of it to cross the river; but the rapid current and the long ropes upset their ” gondola” in mid-stream. The Mojaves, who are capital swimmers, plunged in and helped them save their property. Many had brought rafts to the spot, anticipating the disaster. These were of simple construction, being merely bundles of rushes placed side by side, and securely bound together with osiers.

But they were light and manageable, and their crews plied them with considerable dexterity.

It was night when finally the great work was accomplished-the Colorado crossed, and the camp pitched on the right bank.

Our friends had now quite exhausted their stock in trade in gifts, although large quantities of grain were yet in camp for sale. When told that their white brothers were too poor to buy, the Indians expressed no disappointment, but strolled from fire to fire, laughing, joking, curious but not meddlesome, trying, with a notable faculty of imitation, to learn the white man’s language, and to teach their own.

As long as our explorers were among them, these Mojaves were gay and happy, talking vicariously, singing, laughing. Confiding in the good intentions and kindness of the strangers, they laid aside for the time their race’s studious reserve. Tawny forms glided from one camp-fire to another, or reclined around the blaze, their bright eyes and pearly teeth glistening with animation and delight. They displayed a new phase of Indian character, bestowing an insight into the domestic amusements which are probably popular at their own firesides: mingling among the soldiers and Mexicans, they engaged them in games and puzzles with strings, and some of their inventions in this line were quite curious.

No doubt these simple people were really pleased with the first dawning light of civilization.

They feel the want of comfortable clothing, and appreciate some of the advantages of trade. There is no doubt that, before many years pass away, a great change will have taken place in their country. The advancing tide of emigration will sweep over it, and, unless the strong arm of Government protects them, the Mojaves will be driven to the mountains or exterminated.

When the exploring party wore about to leave, the chiefs came with an interpreter, to say that a national council had been held, in which they had approved of the plan for opening a great road through the Mojave country. They knew that on the trail usually followed by the Pai’ Utes toward California the springs were scanty, and insufficient for the train; that thus the mules might perish on the road, and the expedition fail. Therefore they had selected a good man, who knew the country well, and would send him to guide their white brothers by another route, where an abundance of water and grass would be found. They wished their white brothers to report favorably of their conduct to the Great Chief at Washington, in order that he might send many more of his people to pass that way, and bring clothing and utensils to exchange for the produce of their fields.

Desiring to learn something of their notions regarding the Deity, death, and a future existence, Lieutenant Whipple led an intelligent Mojave to speak upon these subjects. One stooped and drew in the sand a circle, which he said was to represent the former casa, or dwelling-place of Mat-e-vil, Creator of Earth (which was a woman) and Heaven. After speaking for some time with impressive, and yet almost unintelligible, earnestness regarding the traditions of that bright era of their race which all Indians delight in calling to remembrance, he referred again to the circle, and suiting the action to the word, added:

“This grand habitation was destroyed, the nations were dispersed, and Mat-e-vil took his departure, going eastward over the great waters. 110 promised, however, to return to his people and dwell with them forever; and the time of his coming they believe to be near at hand.”

The narrator then became enthusiastic in the anticipation of that event, which is expected to realize the Indian’s hopes of a paradise on earth. Much that he said was incomprehensible. The principal idea suggested was the identity of their Deliverer, coming from the east, with the Montezuma of the Pueblo Indians, or perhaps the Messiah of Israel; and yet the name of Montezuma seemed utterly unknown to this Indian guide. His ideas of a future existence appeared somewhat vague and undefined. The Mojaves, he said, were accustomed to burn the bodies of the dead; but they believe that an undying soul arises from the ashes of the deceased, and takes its flight, over the mountains and waters, eastward to the happy spirit-land.

Loroux says, that he has been told by a priest of California that the Colorado Indians were Aztecs, driven from Mexico at the time of the conquest of Cortez. He thinks the circle represents their ancient city, and the water spoken of refers to the surrounding lakes. This idea derives some plausibility from the fact, mentioned by Alargon, that, in his memorable expedition up the Colorado River in 1540, he met with tribes that spoke the same language as his Indian interpreters, who accompanied him from the City of Mexico, or Culiacan.


The Rose-Baley Wagon Train

The Rose-Baley Wagon Train was a significant event in the history of American westward migration. Here is an overview of its history:

Background and Planning

The Rose-Baley Wagon Train was one of the earliest attempts to reach California via the newly built Beale Wagon Road. The expedition was organized in 1858 by two groups, one led by Leonard Rose from New Mexico and another by Dr. Joseph R. Bailey (often spelled Baley) from Iowa. Their goal was to find a shorter and safer route to California, bypassing the treacherous terrain and hostile territories commonly faced on the Oregon and Santa Fe Trails.

The Journey Begins

The two groups met in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in July 1858. They combined their resources, forming a large wagon train of about 60 to 70 wagons and over 100 people, including men, women, and children. They followed the Beale Wagon Road, which had been surveyed by Edward Fitzgerald Beale, a former naval officer and explorer.

Challenges and Conflicts

The journey was fraught with difficulties. The terrain was rugged, and the summer heat in the desert was relentless. Water sources were scarce, making sustaining the livestock and the travelers challenging.

In August 1858, the wagon train faced a significant challenge when encountering the Mojave Desert. They were attacked by a group of Native Americans, often identified as Mojave Indians, who were hostile to the encroachment on their lands. The attack resulted in the death of several members of the wagon train and significant loss of livestock.

Turning Back

After the attack, the survivors were forced to abandon their goal of reaching California via the Beale Wagon Road. They retreated to Albuquerque, where they regrouped and considered their options. The expedition’s failure was a significant setback for those hoping to establish a new route to California.

Legacy

The Rose-Baley Wagon Train is remembered as one of the early attempts to pioneer new routes to the West Coast. Despite its failure, the expedition highlighted the challenges of westward expansion and the need for more secure and reliable routes. It also underscored the tensions between settlers and Native American tribes during American history.

The Beale Wagon Road itself eventually became a significant route for future migrations, contributing to the expansion and development of the American West. The experiences of the Rose-Baley Wagon Train provided valuable lessons for subsequent expeditions and were part of the broader narrative of the westward movement in the United States.

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https://mojavedesert.net/mojave-indians/us-04.html

https://mojavedesert.net/mojave-indians/

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Barstow & the National Old Trails Road

Barstow, California, has a significant historical connection to the National Old Trails Road, which was key in developing the American road transportation system. The National Old Trails Road, also known as the Ocean-to-Ocean Highway, was established in the early 20th century and stretched from Baltimore, Maryland, to California, ending in Los Angeles. This road was one of the earliest transcontinental highways and was instrumental in promoting automotive travel and the development of roadside infrastructure across the United States.

Barstow’s Role
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Barstow emerged as an essential stop along the National Old Trails Road due to its strategic location at the junction of several key routes. It lies at the crossroads of the Mojave River Valley, where the Salt Lake Trail, the Mojave Road, the Old Spanish Trail, and later, the railroad routes converge. This made Barstow a crucial hub for transportation and logistics, connecting the eastern parts of the country with the West Coast.

Development and Impact
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With the rise of the automobile, Barstow became a popular stopover for travelers traveling across the country. The town provided essential services such as lodging, fuel, and vehicle repairs, which helped support its local economy. The presence of the National Old Trails Road also encouraged the development of other infrastructure, including the famed Route 66, which was aligned with parts of the Old Trails Road.

Route 66 and Beyond
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In 1926, with the establishment of the U.S. Highway System, much of the National Old Trails Road was incorporated into U.S. Route 66. Barstow continued to thrive as a key stop along Route 66, attracting tourists and travelers with its diners, motels, and other attractions tailored to the road-tripping public.

Today, Barstow celebrates its rich transportation history through museums and cultural sites that highlight its role in the era of cross-country travel. The town serves as a gateway to regional attractions and continues to honor the legacy of the National Old Trails Road and Route 66.

The Carson and Colorado Railway: A Historical Overview

https://mojavedesert.net/railroads/carson-and-colorado

The Carson and Colorado Railway, initially incorporated on May 10, 1880, was a critical artery in the economic development of Nevada and Eastern California. Running approximately 300 miles from Mound House, Nevada, to Keeler, California, this narrow-gauge railway navigated some of the region’s most challenging terrains, including the formidable 7,100-foot-high Montgomery Pass.

Carson & Colorado at Mt. Montgomery Pass – 1882

Early Days and Expansion

Construction of the railway began swiftly after its incorporation, aiming to connect the isolated mining and agricultural communities along its route. Operations commenced on August 1, 1883, with the railway serving as a vital transport link for ore, goods, and passengers. The line initially facilitated the economic boom in mining areas, particularly with the discovery of silver and gold in Tonopah and Goldfield, Nevada.

Technical Specifications

The railway was built as a narrow gauge (3 feet or 914 mm), which was more economical and could handle the sharp curves and steep grades of the mountainous regions better than standard gauges. It used a variety of steam locomotives suitable for the narrow gauge and the challenging conditions of the route. These trains were crucial for transporting diverse freight, including timber, livestock, and minerals, and also provided passenger services essential for local populations’ mobility.

Strategic Reorganizations

In 1892, the railway was reorganized as the Carson and Colorado Railway. In 1900, it was sold to the Southern Pacific Company, marking a significant transition in its operations. This acquisition integrated the Carson and Colorado into a larger railway network, enhancing its operational capacity through better resources and management. The northern section from Mound House to Mina was converted to standard gauge in 1905, facilitating direct interchange with other lines and improving logistical efficiency.

Decline and Legacy

Despite its importance, the railway’s relevance waned with the rise of automobiles and improved road networks. The railway began phasing out operations, with parts of the line abandoned in the 1930s and 1940s. The last train ran on April 29, 1960, and the tracks were removed in January 1961.

Today, the legacy of the Carson and Colorado Railway is preserved in museums and historical sites along the former route. These sites celebrate its role in the development of the American West, particularly in how it supported remote communities and contributed to the region’s economic dynamism.

Community Impact

The presence of the railway significantly shaped communities like Mound House, Hawthorne, Bishop, and Laws. The railway not only supported local economies but also fostered their growth by connecting them to larger markets and other parts of the country. The connection at Mound House with the Virginia and Truckee Railroad was particularly crucial, enhancing the flow of goods and ores from Nevada’s mining districts to broader markets.

The Carson and Colorado Railway remains a topic of interest for historians and railway enthusiasts. It symbolizes the challenges and triumphs of maintaining railway service in one of America’s most rugged landscapes.


This article provides a comprehensive look at the historical and technical aspects of the Carson and Colorado Railway, illustrating its importance in the development and eventual decline of regional rail transport in the American West.

Intermodal Freight Transport

Railroads

Barstow, California. Intermodal freight transport involves the transportation of cargo in an intermodal container or vehicle, using multiple modes of transportation (e.g., rail, ship, and truck) without any handling of the freight itself when changing modes. This system reduces cargo handling, improves security, reduces damage and loss, and allows freight to be transported faster.

Barstow is a significant hub in the intermodal network due to its strategic location along major freight rail lines and highways. It facilitates the transfer of goods between different transportation modes, playing a critical role in the logistics and distribution chain, especially between major ports and inland destinations across the United States.

The history of the Barstow Intermodal facility is closely tied to the development of transportation infrastructure in the Barstow area, which has long been a key junction point for major rail and road routes.

  1. Railway History: Barstow’s role as a transportation hub began with the railroad. The area became a key railway center in the late 19th and early 20th centuries with the arrival of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway (now part of the BNSF Railway). This established Barstow as a critical point in the transcontinental rail network, facilitating the movement of goods across the country.
  2. Intermodal Development: The concept of intermodal transport—moving goods in the same container or vehicle by multiple forms of transportation—gained popularity in the mid-20th century. Barstow’s strategic location made it a natural choice for developing intermodal facilities. The Barstow Intermodal facility allows for efficient transfer of containers between trains and trucks, optimizing the transport of goods to and from the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and across the wider United States.
  3. Economic Impact: Over the years, the intermodal facility has played a significant role in the economic development of Barstow and the surrounding region. It has created jobs, spurred the growth of logistics and support industries, and contributed to the local economy by facilitating efficient and cost-effective transportation of goods.
  4. Expansion and Modernization: The facility has continuously expanded to accommodate the growing demand for intermodal transport. Technology, infrastructure, and equipment investments have enhanced its capacity and efficiency, allowing it to handle larger freight volumes and adapt to changing transportation needs.

The history of Barstow Intermodal reflects the broader trends in transportation and logistics, showcasing the evolution from rail-centric freight movement to integrated, multimodal transport systems that support the dynamic flow of goods in a globalized economy.

Southern Pacific Railroad Pages

Southern Pacific Railroad

mojavedesert.net › mining-history › overview

The Southern Pacific. The Southern Pacific began construction at Mojave in February 1882 of a new line to Needles, on the Colorado River. The destination was …

Southern Pacific Railroad

mojavedesert.net › railroads › southern-pacific-railroad

Historic RR Chronology … That railroad was never built, but the Southern Pacific constructed a line through the desert in 1882-83 from Mojave to Needles, …

The Southern Pacific and later Santa Fe transcontinental route

mojavedesert.net › railroads › railroads-021

In taking over this Southern Pacific line, especially the part between Needles and Barstow, the Santa Fe System achieved ownership of a transcontinental …

Southern Pacific Railroad – Jawbone

mojavedesert.net › railroads › jawbone

Jawbone branch of the Southern Pacific Railroad of the Mojave Desert.

Lancaster California

digital-desert.com › lancaster-ca

Lancaster, California. The Beginning. The Southern Pacific Railroad built a line from San Francisco to Los Angeles which was completed in 1876. Along the line …

Chronology/Timeline of Railroads of the Mojave Desert

mojavedesert.net › railroads › chronology

Mojave Desert Historic Railroad Chronology · 1876 – 1915 · 1881 Southern Pacific – Mojave – Calico Station (Daggett) · 1883 Atlantic & Pacific builds to Kingman

California Southern Railway

mojavedesert.net › railroads › california-southern

Notes asnd links regarding the California Southern Railway in the Cajon Pass to Barstow in 1887 – Mojave Desert.

Railroads in the Mojave (San Bernardino County)

mojavedesert.net › railroads › railroad-history03

The First Railroads. The Southern Pacific. The first western railroad project was put forth in 1835, when a line starting from Lake Michigan and extending …

Railroads of the Mojave Desert

mojavedesert.net › railroads

Atlantic & Pacific Railroad · Bullfrog Goldfield · Barnwell Searchlight · California Eastern Railroad/Railway · California Southern Railway · Carson and Colorado …

Carson & Colorado Railroad

mojavedesert.net › railroads › carson-and-colorado

… Southern Pacific’s narrow gauge subsidiary, the Nevada and California Railroad. … In the early 20th century, it o

Covered Wagon (prairie schooner)

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Covered wagons significantly impacted the United States’ westward expansion during the 18th and 19th centuries. These wagons, often called “prairie schooners,” were designed to transport goods and settlers across the North American continent.

Family & covered wagon (prairie schooner)

Key features and uses of covered wagons included:

  1. Design: Covered wagons typically had a wooden frame with a canvas cover. This cover protected the contents from weather elements like rain and sun. The wagon bed was usually made of wood and was about four feet wide by ten feet long.
  2. Cover: The cover was made of canvas or similar durable cloth, stretched over hooped frames, providing shelter and goods for the occupants.
  3. Wheels: The wheels were often large and designed to handle rough terrain. The front wheels were usually smaller than the rear wheels, allowing easier turning.
  4. Draft Animals: Oxen, mules, or horses were commonly used to pull these wagons. Oxen were preferred for their strength and endurance, especially over long distances.
  5. Role in Expansion: Covered wagons were essential for westward migration in the U.S. They carried settlers’ belongings, including tools, food, and sometimes even passengers. These wagons were a vital part of the movement to settle the American West and were commonly seen on trails like the Oregon Trail, the Santa Fe Trail, and the California Trail.
  6. Living Quarters: The covered wagon was a temporary home for many settlers traveling west. Families would cook, eat, sleep, and spend much of their time in or around the wagon during their journey.
  7. Historical Significance: The image of a covered wagon crossing the plains has become an iconic symbol of American frontier life, representing the pioneer spirit, exploration, and the challenges of frontier life.

The use of covered wagons declined with the advent of railroads, which offered a faster and more efficient means of transporting goods and people across the country. However, their legacy remains an integral part of American history and folklore.

Odometer

Are we there yet?

An odometer was an instrument used by American pioneers, particularly during the westward expansion in the 19th century, to measure the distance traveled. These devices were vital for journeys along routes like the Old Spanish Trail, as they helped travelers gauge their progress, estimate their arrival times, and manage their resources more effectively.

Wagon odometer – Courtesy LDS Church

The basic principle of the odometer dates back to ancient times, with variations used by the Romans and Chinese. However, the version used on covered wagons was adapted to the needs of the pioneers. It typically involved a mechanism that counted the revolutions of a wagon wheel. Since the wheel’s circumference was known, each revolution corresponded to a specific distance traveled. This count was then converted into miles or another distance unit and displayed.

This simple but effective device was crucial for pioneers who had to navigate vast, often unmarked territories. Knowing how far they had traveled, they could make informed decisions about when to rest, resupply, or seek shelter, especially as they faced the weather, terrain, and other uncertainties of frontier travel.

Railroads in Cajon Pass

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The Cajon Pass is a significant mountain pass in Southern California, USA, and it has a rich history when it comes to railroads. It is a crucial transportation route for both freight and passenger trains.

Courtesy Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad Blue Cut- 1941 (colorized)

Here’s some information about railroads in the Cajon Pass:

  1. History: The history of railroads in the Cajon Pass dates back to the 19th century. The first railroad line through the pass was the California Southern Railroad, completed in the 1880s. It was later acquired by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (ATSF).
  2. Santa Fe Railway: The ATSF (Santa Fe) significantly developed the Cajon Pass as a major transportation route. They constructed numerous tracks, tunnels, and bridges to facilitate the passage of trains through the rugged terrain of the pass.
  3. Union Pacific: Union Pacific (UP) also operates through the Cajon Pass. UP and BNSF (Burlington Northern Santa Fe) are two major freight railroads that use this pass for transporting goods between the West Coast and the rest of the United States.
  4. Passenger Rail: Besides freight, passenger trains use the Cajon Pass. Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner and Metrolink commuter trains provide passenger services in the region, connecting cities like Los Angeles and San Bernardino.
  5. Cajon Pass Railfan Locations: The Cajon Pass is a popular spot for rail enthusiasts (railfans) to watch and photograph trains. There are various well-known locations, such as Sullivan’s Curve and the Hill 582 Overlook, where railfans gather to enjoy the sight of trains traversing the pass.
  6. Modern Operations: The Cajon Pass remains a vital artery for transporting goods between Southern California and the rest of the country. Freight trains of various lengths and configurations, including long double-stack container trains, can frequently pass through the area.
  7. Upgrades and Maintenance: Railroads invest in upgrading and maintaining the tracks and infrastructure in the Cajon Pass to ensure safe and efficient rail transportation.
Courtesy Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad – 1941 photo (colorized)

Please note that while this information provides an overview of railroads in the Cajon Pass, there may have been developments or changes in the area after my last knowledge update in January 2022. It’s always a good idea to check with local authorities or rail companies for the most up-to-date information on rail operations in the Cajon Pass.