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Nostalgia & History > Williams Loop

Date: 06/12/19 05:03
Williams Loop
Author: donstrack

Williams Loop on the former WP in Feather River Canyon. The UP photo was used on the April page of the 1987 UP calendar.

Located at Spring Garden, about 11 miles southeast of Keddie, and 18 miles northwest of Portola.

Jeff Asay's new "Iron Feather" book says on page 40 that a temporary three-percent by-pass was put into service on July 11, 1909, while the loop itself was still being completed, with its normal one percent grade. The loop went into service on November 19, 1910, but the by-pass remained in place until 1927. A few westbound trains, and lighter eastbound trains may have continued to use the by-pass because it saved several minutes in running time. The original construction included a long wooden trestle taking the upper line over the lower line. In 1913-1914 the trestle was replaced with the current fill and concrete overpass.

Don Strack

Date: 06/12/19 06:48
Re: Williams Loop
Author: E25

Someone with a drone should get in there to do an updated perspective view.

Greg Stadter
Phoenix, AZ

Date: 06/12/19 06:51
Re: Williams Loop
Author: stevelv

Very cool photo.  I have never seen this shot nor any other photos of Williams loop from the air.  Thanks for posting Don.

Date: 06/12/19 07:55
Re: Williams Loop
Author: pwh

Is the train eastbound or westbound? Thanks.

Date: 06/12/19 08:00
Re: Williams Loop
Author: dan

that is tight!  must have been fun with the 3985, the bypass was on the right side?

Date: 06/12/19 08:12
Re: Williams Loop
Author: DynamicBrake

pwh Wrote:
> Is the train eastbound or westbound? Thanks.

Eastbound.  Thanks for sharing this great shot Don.

Kent in CArmel Valley

Date: 06/12/19 09:34
Re: Williams Loop
Author: coach

I wonder where the original, steeper bypass line was located?

Date: 06/12/19 10:47
Re: Williams Loop
Author: wingomann

The train is eastbound.

​The by-pass was where the road goes into the trees in line with the straight away heading to Spring Garden.  It would have been a very short 3% section.  I wonder if engineers made a run at it if they had any reserve throttle left.  Hitting it with a drag freight must have been no fun.

Date: 06/12/19 10:58
Re: Williams Loop
Author: 3rdswitch

Great view. I too have never seen it from this perspective. Sure is deceptive looking like it was totally unecessary.

Date: 06/12/19 11:55
Re: Williams Loop
Author: tgcostello

Thanks Don. I've never visited the Williams Loop.  Now I will understand what I'm seeing in closer photos.
Tim Costello

Date: 06/12/19 16:32
Re: Williams Loop
Author: robj

Very cool, was there long time ago, neat to see.


Date: 06/12/19 21:49
Re: Williams Loop
Author: roustabout

E25 Wrote:
> Someone with a drone should get in there to do
> an updated perspective view.

One of our local railfans has.  His channel on YouTube is under Railfan Dan and the specific video is:


Date: 06/21/19 13:49
Re: Williams Loop
Author: b39-8

Have not seen an eastbound stack train in the 4 and 1/2 years I have lived next to that line in Quincy.  I see westbound stack trains, but never an eastbound.

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