Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC

Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC

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Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 SC
 
Growing Up With Trains A Southern California Album Interurbans Special #83 by Richard Steinheimer & Donald Sims
Soft Cover   (PRICE sticker remains on upper corner of the cover)
Copyright 1982 FIRST PRINTING
111 pages.   
All that and trains too!
Were a skier to be born and raised in Sun Valley, Idaho, it would be the best of all possible worlds. Well, it is pretty much like that for a railfan to be brought up in Southern California. Where else in this nation can you take a location, then expand it for a couple of hundred mileposts while expecting to encounter great mountain passes, a roadbed slipping along ocean beaches, two deserts and a vast homeland labeled by demographers as "megalopohs." Then there's the plus: three major transcontinental rail lines whose competitive instincts have led to a historical saga which has included super streamliners, hotshot piggybacks, electronic wizardry and, always, the latest in motive power trends.
Undoubtedly it will be labeled as cliche, yet Southern California's railroad montage is part nature, part man-made. As a definable area, it is a land form in the extreme that brings to Southern Cal its justly famous railroad acclaim. What rail enthusiast in far off Maine hasn't heard of Cajon Pass or had visions of what it might be like to be trackside as ten, maybe more, units of six ailed Diesels come storming skywards out of the San Joaquin Valley and onto the Tehachapi Loop?
Certainly Chicago residents have a clear-cut claim to more corporate logos than just Union Pacific, Southern Pacific and Santa Fe, but there are no mountain barriers or chameleon-like deserts within hundreds of miles of the nation's rail center, only unrelieved plains. Cajon Pass is but an hour away from downtown L.A.'s glassed-in modernism by way of Henry Ford's inventive genius, ditto lesser known Beaumont Pass just south. The magnet that railfans know as Tehachapi Loop is two hours by car while even the remotest part of this amazing steel-webbed empire is  no more than four to five. Westward lies the coast, a north route to San Francisco where one can capture glimpses of piggybacks curling through gentle curves within yards of splashing surf, while southwards on the corridor to San Diego, the nationalistic colors of Amtrak are building a new generation of railroad passengers.
Those chapparal studded walls that hem in Los Angeles: the San Gabriel, Santa Monica and San Bernardino ranges and other lesser known brands, have weathered and fractured for eons, forming in the slow process the Los Angeles Basin, a relatively small but tightly packed carton of many cities which outsiders often lump together as "Los Angeles." As geologists reckon time, these places and the railroads that serve them have only been around for a second or so. But what a fascinating moment in light of one's lifetime!
During that geologic instant there has been a basketfull of railroading change, a kaleidoscope of images new, images faded. This place once housed the greatest of all interurban empires, the Pacific Electric Railway, a web-like net that succumbed to automobiles. Ironically, it was this machine which allowed railfans to visit places like Cajon Pass, swelter in the desert at Kelso, or be overwhelmed by majestic beauty of a not-so-rare snow storm bringing fleeting change to passes normally attuned to dry, brown grasses.
But time passes and what was dismissed as commonplace yesterday is tomorrow's version of a memory. Fortunately, much of it has been recorded through the lenses and on the film processing reels of Southern Californians.
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