Facebook Page

Railfair 1981 Trip

by Chris Guenzler

5/7/1981 I drove myself up to Davis where I would stay with Brad at his place in Davis during my trek to Railfair 1981.

I left at 4:30 AM and drove to Bakersfield where I caught the Santa Fe SSB-1200 1237. I made my way to Davis were Brad and I partied that first night there.

5/8/1981 Brad had to work up in Woodland so I railfanned around Davis seeing both City of San Francisco until he returned.

We drove over to Sacramento to the Railfair 1981 site where I caught the Southern Pacific 4-8-4 4449 in the late afternoon sun.

From the Railfair grounds we drove over to Fruitridge where I caught the California Central Traction RS-1 80.

Also there was the CCT GP-9 60. We returned to Davis for another night of partying.

5/9/1981 I went down and picked up Jeff off of the Spirit of California before Brad and I dropped Jeff off at Railfair for the day. We were then off to visit Brad's sister at Chico.

Along the way, I caught the Sacramento Northern GP-7 711 at Yuba City. After a most wonderful visit at Chico it was all too soon that we had to head back to Sacramento.

In Marysville, I caught the Western Pacific 3552 east. We went back via Roseville and found Jeff who had a wonderful day at Railfair 1981 and we returned to Davis for the night.

5/10/81 After saying goodbye to Brad, Jeff and I headed home.

Since it was Sunday morning we stopped by the Railfair grounds which was deserted, and I caught the National Railroad of Mexico U-23-B 10018.

We drove down to where they were refueling the steam engines finding the Union Pacific 4-8-4 8444 leading the UP 3985 and SP 1269.

Behind the 8444 was the newly restored Union Pacific 4-6-6-4 3985. I had seen this locomotive in a dead line at Cheyenne, Wyoming with the UP Gas Turbines in 1971.

The last steamer here was the Southern Pacific 0-6-0 1269.

We headed home stopping off in Stockton for a few Western Pacific shots. Here is a pair of WP SW-9's 602 and 604. We returned home and from Flimsies Magazine I learned the Southern Pacific 4449 was making a special trip down to Los Angeles.

5/13/1981 Bill and I drove to Los Angeles Union Station finding the Southern Pacific 4449 and new SP Glasshopper on display.

After viewing the displays, we drove across the Los Angeles River then hiked in to the bridge over the river. Here we were joined by some other fans. Right before the SP 4449 and train came a guy walked across the bridge and set up in front of our photo line.

We managed to get him out of the way before the Southern Pacific 4449 steamed out of town.