Union Pacific's Mojave Subdivision
Quite possibly one of the most famous portions of railroading in all of the world is the Tehachapi Loop. It is a stunning display of machine against mountain and remains untarnished after more than 125 years. Trains have fought this mountain pass with courage and strength, and while most win the battle with nature, the mountain does occasionally win one as well. This page can not tell the full tale of the Loop, but I'll try to give you a small peak at one of the greatest railroading achievements of the 19th century.
The tracks climb through scenic farm pastures and along rugged mountain cliffs, but the icing on the cake is the Loop, a nearly 4,000' circle that carries trains up nearly 80' often doubling the longest trains over themselves. The Loop is the most visible landmark, but the engineering feats don't stop there. There are 12 remaining tunnels of an original 17 and there approximately 6 horseshoe curves in about 16 miles, 3 of which occur in less than 5 miles of track. Steep grades and tight curves are the name of the game and slow, heavy freight the prize. So enjoy and look around. Tehachapi is one of the most photographed and videoed locations of the railroad world, I only hope I can provide additional enlightenment on this truly wonderful place.
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From North to South
Allard & Tunnel 2
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