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  • Topic: San Diego & Arizona RR -- Carrizo Gorge

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    • January 28, 2018 9:18 PM EST

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      San Diego & Arizona RR -- Carrizo Gorge

      Wednesday night I went out to the desert east of San Diego, camped out over night near the tracks of the former San Diego & Arizona Railroad. Got a few night photos:



      I got up right around sunrise and hiked along the tracks, which pass through an incredible canyon known as Carrizo Gorge. I was hoping to make it to the famous Goat Canyon Trestle (roughly 700 feet long and 200 feet high), however I didn't get that far. In fact, I didn't even get into the actual gorge -- the tracks first pass along the edge of a much smaller (yet still very large) canyon that is just a tributary of the gorge. As you can see, this whole area was the inspiration for my In-ko-pah Railroad.

      Here I am standing in a culvert made from large blocks of local granite:

       

      Here's Tunnel #21, the last tunnel on the line but the first one you'll come to when entering the gorge from the north:


      The tracks still have the original rails from when the line was first built. This rail is dated 1913:


      I flew my drone a few times and got some interesting shots:


      Some aerial views of Tunnel #20:


      Looking south from above Tunnel #20:


      Looking east from above Tunnel #20. This area contains traces of the old railroad construction camp:


      On the ground, looking south towards Tunnel #20:


      The other end of the tunnel:


      This was as far as I got. Unfortunately I crashed my drone pretty badly when I tried to fly it through the tunnel. When it lost the GPS signal, it started to drift. I tried to back it out but it drifted into the side of the tunnel. Good thing I paid for the first year insurance on it.


      I still have to edit the video, so I'll post that later.

      .

    • January 29, 2018 12:59 AM EST
      • Waverly, Alabama
         
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      Great photos, Ray. Are you sure those are not just photos of YOUR layout?   I could see the culvert being modeled on someone’s layout using the Taylor cut stones we all used in last year’s challenge. Anxiously waiting on the video. Thanks for sharing.  

      This post was edited by Dan Hilyer at January 29, 2018 1:01 AM EST
      ____________________________________

       

    • January 29, 2018 3:51 AM EST
      • West Grove, Pennsylvania
         
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      I've got a few books around here on that RR. Interesting stuff. 

      How much of it is still in operation? I know a few miles around Campo are still in use since we rode a little tourist train there. 

      And the rail in some your pics looks used. 

      Closer into SD parts of it were used for their Metro system.

      ____________________________________

      "Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --Martin Luther King Jr

    • January 29, 2018 4:04 AM EST

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      This end of it was lightly used for a few years by the Carrizo Gorge Railway, before they went belly up. Currently there is a company in Mexico that is looking into operating it, but they have a lot of hurdles to jump before that can happen.

       

    • January 29, 2018 9:19 AM EST
      • Pleasanton, California
         
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      Great photos Ray, can't wait to see the video. Sorry to hear about your drone.  I fly a DJI Spark, I will remember to NOT fly into a tunnel.

      ____________________________________

      Dan DeVoto

      P-Town & West Side R.R.

      Pleasanton, California

      https://www.youtube.com/danstrains

    • January 29, 2018 1:32 PM EST
      • West Grove, Pennsylvania
         
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      I driven around out through that area, looking for signs of where the rails went. Followed some of it till it ventured away from the road and headed off into the mountains. Since I was in a rental, and had no idea where it went or where I was, that's as far as it went. 

      ____________________________________

      "Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --Martin Luther King Jr

    • January 29, 2018 2:47 PM EST
      • Missouri
         
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      Oh wow, look at that night sky!

      Model Railroader magazine's old book 101 Track Plans has a 1950-1960-something era 'one wall of a garage' plan for the SD&AE, a loop-to-point.

      Guess it is being born in San Diego that has me retaining an interest in such things even though I much prefer green things and water.

    • January 29, 2018 7:50 PM EST
      • Maryland
         
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      Great stuff, Ray, what fun

      While I have never hiked to the famous trestle, I have 3 SD buddies who have, they had a few nice shots, but what I remember is that they looked like they had been beat up by an army of orcs, the trail was rough, lots of falling, attack cactus, and blood..etc.

      Jerry

    • January 29, 2018 7:53 PM EST
      • Pinon Hills, California
         
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      Great photos Ray. I look forward to seeing your video. I saw Huell Howser's footage awhile back. It was really interesting to see both ends. It would be great if the trackage could be revived!

    • January 29, 2018 10:29 PM EST
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Ray, did you do a long exposure followed by a flash? Beautiful pix.

       

      Greg

      ____________________________________

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    • January 29, 2018 11:01 PM EST

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      Greg, I used long exposures (5-20 seconds), plus I used a pocket LED flashlight to very briefly illuminate my truck.

       

    • January 29, 2018 11:07 PM EST
      • Streamwood, IL
         
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      Beautiful pics Ray, the night shots are spectacular. with the total darkness and only the stars to illuminate, if you lay on your back, you can watch the satellites tracking through the stars, I lived in Jacumba for a couple years back in the mid '80's.

       

      I've been watching the YouTube videos of a guy that goes by the name The Rocket Scientist, and his adventures on a home made railcart, and he had travelled up to the Goat Canyon Trestle. Tunnel 16 is the last tunnel to pass through, coming from the east, before  you get to the trestle. Some time between 11/11/16, which was when he made it to the trestle, and 1/28/17, the east end of tunnel 16 collapsed. You can still hike to the trestle, but you have to go around the mountain to the right of the tunnel, it's a path that was made by the construction crews when they were originally cutting the tunnel. From his video, you can see someone climbing down the rocks from the tunnel, so if you're adventurous enough, and don't mind climbing over the rocks, you could still go through the tunnel, though I don't know if that would be safe. On the video, he mislabeled the tunnel as tunnel 6, it's actually tunnel 16.

       https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjY2mJDReDQ

      This post was edited by Mike Wlez at February 2, 2018 9:48 PM EST
    • January 30, 2018 10:21 AM EST
      • Spokane Valley, Washington St.
         
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      You can follow the entire route on Google Earth. I lost count of the tunnels.

      Even some abandoned cars on a siding and wrecked cars down in the gorge. Pretty cool stuff.

    • January 30, 2018 4:23 PM EST
      • South Devon, England
         
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      Good work Ray, much appreciated.

      The light pollution from towns and cities is brought home when you see that amount of stars - awesome.

      Incidentally a programme on UK tv this evening called Impossible Engineering featured the Goat CanyonTrestle (actually I have watched it before) and it is a fantastic structure.  Also  shown were the earlier abandoned tunnel and some of the rock slides.

      It would be a fine achievement if the line was re-opened but I guess there would have to be a fair amount of ROW restitution,  But, the line is there and I am sure it presents a real challenge to some guys.

      ____________________________________

      regards, Alan

       Nothing is so strong as gentleness. Nothing so gentle as real strength.  Saint Francis de Sales  French saint & bishop of Geneva (1567 - 1622) 

      https://www.dartmouthrailriver.co.uk

      https://www.buckfast.org.uk/

       

    • January 30, 2018 4:28 PM EST
      • high desert California
         
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      San, Arizona Eastern RR

       
      The San Diego & Arizona Eastern RR is very interesting.    Last time I was at the museum in Campo I bought a very nice book and it was great reading.   In those days really successful people ( Spreckles ) had to be REALLY successful had to own a Rail Road.       
    • February 1, 2018 1:04 AM EST

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      My replacement drone arrived today!! 

       

       

    • February 2, 2018 4:58 PM EST
      • Saint Johns, Florida
         
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      I looked for a picture of Goat Canyon Trestle on the 'net but couldn't find one, but I did find this one of pretty girls! Oh look, there is a trestle in there!

      ____________________________________

       

       

    • February 2, 2018 6:30 PM EST
      • high desert California
         
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      Joe Zullo said:

       

       

      That is a nice trestle photo   

    • February 2, 2018 6:45 PM EST
      • Powder Springs, GA
         
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      Yeah, Joe.  It took a while to pick out the trestle.

    • February 3, 2018 6:19 PM EST
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      What Trestle?

      ____________________________________

      Be sure­ to visit ­my site, l­ots of tec­hnical tip­s and modi­fications,­ and you c­an search ­for topics­ and key w­ords.


      ­Click HERE for Greg­'s web sit­e
      PLEASE NOT­E: Please do NOT use private messaging, i­f you have­ a questio­n, feel fr­ee to emai­l me priva­tely, u­se regular­ email onl­y: greg@el­massian.co­m

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