Sunday, April 17, 2005

Question: Sacramento to Omaha?

From: "Patrick & Stacey"

Is there a historic steam engine that runs from Sacramento to Omaha? I'm finishing Ambrose's book and would like to relive the scenery and road of the original route. Thanks for any info.



Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "chris graves"

Your question re: a live steamer from Sacramento to Omaha has been referred to me, and others, for a reply.
Other than the Freedom Train, or other special events, the rails today are used by freight and Amtrak, both using diesel locomotives.
A bigger question perhaps is relying on the Ambrose book for a guide.  Despite Mr. Ambrose's claims, the old and new grade are not similiar, nor are they parallel.
You may wish to go to GOOGLE and search for The Sins of Stephen Ambrose, a document done following publication of the book.
For a better review of what the old grade has in store, you may enjoy The Old Iron Road by David H. Bain, it is a sequel to his best selling REAL history book, Empire Express.
Should you find yourself near Sacramento, the door is always open here for a tour of the old grade (provided you pay the gas bill!).  You will find unblemished grade in Newcastle, Auburn, Cape Horn, above Cape Horn, Cisco, the Tunnels, etc.  for current photos, go to the [CPRR Museum's Sierra Grade Exhibit].
Happy rails!  G J Chris Graves Newcastle, Cal.

[Links added]

4/17/2005 9:20 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...


Didn't you say a few months back that the paperback edition of Ambrose's book currently being sold incorporates the corrections?

4/17/2005 9:33 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "chris graves"

I held my nose at Boarders the other day, and leaved thru the book. MOST of the errors had been corrected. We don't know, from this fellows email, where or not he has a hard or soft copy. I didn't go thru the whole book, just skimmed. They correctly identified the Gold Discovery site in Coloma, rather than Fairfield, I thought that was nice. chris

4/17/2005 9:35 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

See trip information.

4/17/2005 9:45 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

You can ride a portion of the route (between Sacramento and Ogden, Utah), on Amtrak's California Zephyr. This is diesel powered. No regular passenger trains run between Ogden and Omaha today.

There are no regular long distance steam train operations in North America, although there are some pretty good length excursion operations (day trips) a few places, and occasional special longer operations. Trips between Omaha and Sacramento behind steam are rare to the point of being nearly non-existent.

Kyle K. Wyatt
Curator of History & Technology
California State Railroad Museum

Note my work address has changed to:
My personal address remains:

4/17/2005 2:20 PM  

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