Step back to 1991 to experience one of the busiest and most scenic railroad routes in Northern California, the Shasta Division of the Southern Pacific. The Valley and Black Butte Districts host a daily parade of heavy lumber and merchandise trains, joined by an ever-increasing number of intermodal movements.
Our coverage of this exciting area starts in Redding and continues to Grass Lake. Trains cross the dramatic Redding Trestle as they start upgrade into the mountains. The constantly twisting route follows the Sacramento River to Dunsmuir where diesels are added to many of the trains for the battle through Cantara Loop and up the stiff 2.1 percent grade through Azalea. Continuing east from Black Butte, trains climb a constant 1.4 percent grade as they skirt their way around the base of Mt. Shasta.
On the Shasta Division, Southern Pacific’s trains work their way through changing and spectacular scenery. You’ll experience the challenges they face as they cross high trestles and grind uphill to the summit at Grass Lake. You’ll witness the seasons change from summer’s long days to winter’s snow-covered slopes, as the trains keep moving. Interesting motive power, varied and plentiful trains, and the difficulties of mountain railroading await you in Southern Pacific’s Shasta Division!