Facebook Page

Santa Fe 3751 through the years

by Chris Guenzler

I first saw the Santa Fe 3751. a 4-8-4 locomotive sitting on display in Viaduct Park in San Bernardino. Little did I know at that time that one day in the future I would see it run under its own steam. My fondest memory was after one major rain storm, I saw Santa Fe 3751 standing surrounded by rain water that had flooded the park. The San Bernardino Historical Society was formed to restore the Santa Fe 3751. The group started its restoration in June 1981 with an initial evaluation. Over the next few years minor work was done in the park. In 1986 the engine was removed from Viaduct Park and was taken to California Steel Industries in Fontana where the engine was rebuilt. In the Fall of 1990, the proposed California Limited excursion was announced and I had purchased a Segment 2 Barstow to Bakersfield 1st Class ticket for April 30, 1991 when the engine would be going to Railfair 1991 in Sacramento. In April of 1991 although the group did its best to try to have the engine ready to go to Railfair they decide to postpone the trip to a later date. Passengers could have their money returned or wait for a future trip. I still believed the group would complete the engine so I stuck with the trip. On June 23, 1991 the Santa Fe 3751 awoke after 38 years of slumber. On August 13, 1991, for the first time the engine moved under its own power since August 25, 1953.

Here is my first picture of Santa Fe 3751 under steam at Fontana. The trip was then scheduled for after Christmas so I was issued another 1st Class ticket for the new trip Barstow to Bakersfield which would be the new destination. I would finally get to ride across the Tehachapi Mountains.

The California Limited

12/27/1991 My father drove me up to Fullerton to catch the Desert Wind for Barstow where I would board the California Limited pulled by Santa Fe 3751. We arrived there early enough so I could get a picture of the Santa Fe 3751 and train blasting through Fullerton.

After about thirty minutes there came the 3751 and all private car train heading east through Fullerton. I boarded the Desert Wind and passed the Santa Fe 3751 as we took the Cutoff into San Bernardino. Cajon Pass was full of steam fans as we passed through. I was at my hotel in Barstow relaxing when I heard on my scanner Santa Fe 3751 was in Barstow. From the hotel I watched Santa Fe 3751 arrived.

12/28/1991 The next morning on my way to the train.

I shot this picture off the Viaduct over the yard.

I boarded the 3751 to Bakersfield and we did this runby at Edwards siding. It was a once in a lifetime trip over the Tehachapi Mountains and the famed "Loop" which I enjoyed from the front seat of the Plaza Santa Fe Dome Car. The whole story of that trip can be found on the link below. The 3751 would now be housed in a building at the San Bernardino Shops.

California Limited Train Ride

The 1992 Santa Fe 3751 Employee Recognition Special

I found the schedule of the deadhead move to Los Angeles in Flimsies for the Santa Fe 3751.

I went to Pomona, CA on the morning of August 29, 1992 and caught Santa Fe 3751 heading west over the Santa Fe 2nd District.

The eastbound Santa Fe 3751 Employee Special was caught at my favorite location on Cajon Pass above the tunnels.

The train had gone east to Chicago and on September 16, 1992 the westbound Santa Fe 3751 was caught on the big curve east of Lavic, CA by my father and me. With the tearing down of the San Bernardino Shop Building to make way for a new intermodal yard in 1995, the Santa Fe 3751 was moved to a siding along the new Metrolink Flyover which it would now call home sitting outdoors.

Riverside Orange Blossom Festival 4/23/1995

I took a special Metrolink Train out to Riverside for a picture of the Santa Fe 3751.

The Santa Fe 3751 at Riverside. In 1999 the Santa Fe 3751 was moved to a new home at the former Santa Fe Redondo Jct Roundhouse which Amtrak used.

The 3751 Railfair 1999 Trip

Bill, his lovely new wife Mai Loan and I ventured out to the Horseshoe Curve out in Santa Ana Canyon for this picture on June 16, 1999.

I next caught 3751 sitting at Railfair 1999 on display on a very hot June 21, 1999.

Los Angeles

In August of 2000, the Santa Fe Redondo Jct Roundhouse was dismantled by Amtrak. The 3751 would be kept outside once more.

My next picture was taken from Amtrak Surfliner on August 13, 2002 as I was starting my "Starlighting to Safeco Field Trip" with the engine being prepared for its upcoming trip to Williams, AZ for the NRHS 2002 Convention.

Santa Fe 3751 eastbound trip to NRHS 2002 Convention in Williams, AZ August 18, 2002

Bill Compton and his nephew Brian picked me up and we made our way through traffic to the Metrolink Flyover across the former SP {Sunset Route} now Union Pacific and the San Gabriel River. The Baldwin Park Local came from the City of Industry to work the Metrolink San Bernardino Line industries. It was told to wait for the Santa Fe 3751 east before it could start its work.

About ten minutes later, the Santa Fe 3751 and train listed below crossed over the flyover on a very cloudy morning. We got into Bill's vehicle and drove east via the Pomona Freeway then Interstate 15 to Etawanda Ave and our next photo location.

Here the sun came out and the Santa Fe 3751 charged by with smoke billowing out of its stack. It made a great picture. Next we headed up to Cajon Pass and parked at the end of the public road at Cajon. The fire area was closed to vehicles and to all others but I had contacted the US Forest Service and got permission to hike into Sullivan's Curve.

The light was great and after longer than expected wait the Santa Fe 3751 and train came chugging up the grade to the curve made so famous by Herb Sullivan and his pictures. It was a great show put on by the Santa Fe 3751 and there were only 9 other people back up in the curve. How many of them had permission? We drove back and I could not wait to ride behind the Santa Fe 3751 on Saturday, Williams to the Grand Canyon.

Santa Fe 3751 NRHS Trip to the Grand Canyon 8/24/2002

I had arrived in Williams by Amtrak on a Railsale Ticket the day before.

Early the next morning I caught 3751 in excellent morning light at the Williams Depot.

I took this train knowing that Photo Runbys would be done. We did our first solo Santa Fe 3751 Photo Runby at Anita.

The 3751 then ran ahead and returned with the Grand Canyon 4960 before they did our first double headed Photo Runby of the day.

Once we had arrived at the Grand Canyon, I shot this picture of the Santa Fe 3751.

Once the regular Grand Canyon Steam Train had arrived with GCRR 18 on the point, they arranged the Santa Fe 3751, Grand Canyon 4960 and Grand Canyon 18 in front of the Grand Canyon Station.

Next, they back each engine up to give the photographers a better picture of the three engines and the log Grand Canyon station.

On our way south, the Santa Fe 3751 did another solo runby at milepost 42.

The Santa Fe 3751 steamed ahead to MP 44 to get the waiting CGRR 4960 before they backed together to perform another double headed runby.

We ran to Willaha and entered the siding to let the regular Grand Canyon train by. All the photographers detrained to get that train passing ours before our train did the first of two runbys here.

I relocated for the second runby. We then headed to Milepost 3 for another runby in the last light of day before the 4960/3751 run south to point the GCRR 18 on the point, backed and preformed a triple headed runby after dark. It was really a very special moment in my Railfanning life.

Santa Fe 3751 West down the Peavine and Arizona California 8/25/2002

It was a great train ride down the Peavine Line and once we got onto the Arizona California they announced we would do a runby at Via. We detrained right in the middle of town with the locals all wondering what the heck was going on.

We did a double runby here which answered all of their questions.

From there we ran to Milepost 100 and once I detrained I named it the Lawrence of Arabia Photo Runby as it was 113 degrees and nothing but sand dunes but it was a great runby location. Here is Photo Runby number one.

A small change of locations for Photo Runby number two.

I made a bigger move for the final Photo Runby of the trip.

The whole convention story can be read by clicking the link below.

Full Convention Story

Next we jump ahead to 2004.

Santa Fe 3751 Trip to San Bernardino

The 3751 steamed through El Monte on 6/12/2004 on its way to the restored San Bernardino Station Celebration.

On Sunday June 13, 2004 the Santa Fe 3751 returned to Los Angeles seen westbound at Bassett.

San Bernardino Railroad Historical Society Community Outreach Program

The next Santa Fe 3751 Trip was to San Pedro for the new San Bernardino Community Outreach Program. Here we see the Santa Fe 3751 and train before and after sunrise at San Pedro on October 30, 2004.

The same view once the sun began to light things up.

A view of Santa Fe 3751 in San Pedro.

The Santa Fe 3751 with drivers lit and the moon high overhead.

2005 APTA Commuter Rail Conference

The Santa Fe 3751 was steamed up and ready to go to Los Angeles Union Station to be part of the railroad display for the APTA Conference on April 3, 2005.

Fullerton Railroad Days 2005

The Santa Fe 3751 steamed away the morning in the California sunshine.

2005 Santa Fe Historical and Modeling Society Annual Convention

The Santa Fe 3751 was on display on June 23, 2005 at Los Angeles Union Station on Track 12.

Sharing the track with the Southwest Chief during its display at Union Station 6/23/2005.

Santa Fe 3751 first Excursion to San Diego June 1, 2008

Santa Fe 3751 at Los Angeles Union Station before the trip started.

Another view of Santa Fe 3751 before it left with me aboard for San Diego.

Santa Fe 3751 being serviced at the Poinsettia Coaster Station.

The Photo Runby of the trip at the Poinsettia Coaster Station.

The Santa Fe 3751 in San Diego.

AAPRCO Excursion to San Diego and on to San Pedro 9/21/2008

Santa Fe 3751 next pulled the APPRCO Excursion to San Diego with me aboard the Pony Express. Here the 3751 on the Flyover across the Los Angeles River.

The Santa Fe 3751 curving into Fullerton with this all private car special.

The Santa Fe 3751 took a curve near CP College.

Tom Anderson took this picture of the Santa Fe 3751 at Califia Beach in San Clemente.

After dropping us off at Old Town the Santa Fe 3751 backed across the San Diego River.

Santa Fe 3751 Excursion to San Diego II The Chase May 1, 2010.

Santa Fe 4-8-4 3751 passes under the old Santa Fe Signal Bridge at Lakeland Street.

Santa Fe 3751 rolls south at Califia Beach.

Santa Fe 3751 went by us at Torrey Pines State Beach just south of Del Mar.

Santa Fe 3751 Excursion to San Diego II The Ride May 2, 2010.

Santa Fe 3751 in San Diego.

The beautiful Santa Fe 4-8-4 3751 at rest at San Diego.

Climbing the grade in the bottom of Rose Canyon.

The Photo Runby at Poinsettia on our northbound trip.

Santa Fe 3751 coming off the Los Angeles River Flyover.

Santa Fe 3751 has returned to LAUPT.

Santa Fe 3751 at rest at LAUPT after a fantastic trip from San Diego.

Santa Fe 3751 to and from San Bernardino Railroad Days 2011.

Santa Fe 3751 waits in the 8th Street Amtrak Coach Yard on 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 waits at LAUPT for its departure time. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 leaves Los Angeles and the LA River behind. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 crosses the Sunset Route in El Monte. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 at Etiwanda Avenue. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 at Fontana. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 at San Bernardino. 4/16/2011

Santa Fe 3751 at LAUPT. 4/17/2011

National Train Day 2011 Los Angeles 5/7/2011

Santa Fe 3751 at LAUPT. 5/7/2011

Santa Fe 3751 Chase to San Bernardino 4/21/2012

Santa Fe 3751 and train at LAUPT this morning.

Santa Fe 3751 and train from the Marguerita Ave Pedestrian Bridge.

Santa Fe 3751 and train at the Hamburger Lane grade crossing in Baldwin Park.

Santa Fe 3751 at Etiwanda Ave.

The Westbound Santa Fe 3751 San Bernardino to LAUPT Trip 4/22/2012

The Santa Fe 3751 went up and over the San Bernardino Flyover.

The Santa Fe 3751 crossed the Los Angeles River.

Santa Fe 3751 at rest after a great trip back to LAUPT.

National Train Day Los Angeles 5/12/2012

Santa Fe 3751 backing towards LAUPT.

Santa Fe 3751 on display at LAUPT.

Santa Fe 3751 and friends at LAUPT.

The Santa Fe 3751 Chase 5/14/2012

Santa Fe 3751 and train took the Horseshoe Bend in Santa Ana Canyon.

Santa Fe 3751 and train rounds Sullivan's Curve and heads east up Cajon Pass.

Santa Fe 3751 and train went through the Upper Mojave Narrows then out of Victorville.

Santa Fe 3751 and train headed east through Lavic.

The Chase of Santa Fe 3751 5/19/2012

Santa Fe 3751 just east of Milepost 186 of the Arizona and California Railroad.

Santa Fe 3751 at the grade crossing at Cadiz Road.

Santa Fe 3751 came through Ludlow.

Santa Fe 3751 at Yucca Road at Barstow.

Santa Fe 3751 just west of Hodge.

San Bernardino Railroad Days 2013

Backing into LAUPT on April 27, 2013.

Heading east down the middle of the San Bernardino Freeway from the Marguerita Ave Pedestrian Bridge. 4/27/2013

Santa Fe 3751 at Covina Blvd. 45/27/2013

On display in San Bernardino. 4/28/2013

On display in San Bernardino. 4/27/2013

Heading back to Los Angeles coming off the flyover over the BNSF mainlines. 4/28/2013

Back at LAUPT after the trip back from San Bernardino. 4/28/2013/

Santa fe 3751 backs along the Los Angeles River for a Toys for Toots Event at LAUPT on 12/17/2016.

Now we wait for the next Santa Fe 3751 movement.