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My Birthday Trip to Trestles at County Line, CA 12/31/2013

by Chris Guenzler

On my 56th Birthday, I took my usual birthday train ride to Solana Beach which ran late both ways. I came home, picked up my camera then drove south to San Clemente, parking on El Camino Real and started my hike down the trails to the Trestles at County Line, railroad-wise that is. I called Julie, Amtrak's automated agent and found out that both Pacific Surfliners 572 and 573 had been cancelled. I set up by the edge of the water of the San Mateo River and would wait for Metrolink 851 as my first train of the day.

I enjoyed the ducks swimming and fishing in the pond then started hearing train horns from the north so was ready.

Metrolink 851 crossed the Trestles on the way to Oceanside, pushing Rosen Beaudin Railway Group (RBRX) F59PH 18520, ex. Larry's Truck and Electric 18520, nee GO Transit 520 built by Electro-Motive Division in 1988. I then relocated just a little way north for Pacific Surfliner 777.

The seagulls were really active before they flew off. I had called AC Adam and Winston Walker for train information so I would have an idea when the trains might arrive. I worked out from my riding that it is 14 minutes from San Juan Capistrano and 16 minutes from Oceanside. Once we had the time, Pacific Surfliner 777 had left Oceanside so I knew what time it would be here if all went according to plan.

Pacific Surfliner 777 crossed the Trestles and entered Orange County at County Line. I relocated for Pacific Surfliner 774.

The train came into sight along the beach.

Pacific Surfliner 774 heading to San Diego.

The County Line sign. Now I would wait for Pacific Surfliner 579.

Pacific Surfliner 579 crossed the Trestles and went by County Line on its way to Los Angeles. I hiked back to the car and drove towards home but had to exit Interstate 5 at Tustin Ranch Road so took local roads home and would enjoy the rest of my birthday there.