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Beaumont Hill


Since moving to Southern California, I have made it a point to photograph what I consider to be some of the most scenic and interesting railroad areas in North America. One of these is the ex-Southern Pacific Beaumont Hill area, which is now the domain of the Union Pacific and is one of its main entrances into the Los Angeles basin. Stretching from West Colton to Indio, which is about 20 miles east of Palm Springs, CA, the Yuma Subdivision is a difficult stretch of railroad that still regularly requires trains to have helpers to assist in the slow climb up and over the crest of Beaumont Hill. Populated by intermodal, general freight, and Amtrak's Sunset Limited, the Yuma Subdivision can be a very busy stretch of railroad that for the railfan is usually easy to access. For the most part, the railroad is paralleled by roads from Colton to Palm Springs, making it easy to chase mostly slow moving freight trains as they crawl up the hill. This is especially true in the San Timoteo Canyon (Ordway, El Casco, and Hinda on the map below), which is an extremely scenic region that is bisected by the serpentine windings of the UP double track mainline. I have organized my photographs of this region by area and will continue to add more as I get the time to go out. Please follow the links below to view them!