McCloud Railway abandonment approved

JDLX Oct 15, 2005

  1. JDLX

    JDLX TrainBoard Member

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    The Surface Transportation Board today approved McCloud Railway's abandonment application. If no offers of financial assistance, appeals, or petitions to reopen the proceedings are filed the railroad is free to end operations east of McCloud and commence salvage operations on 13 November 2005.

    Jeff Moore
    Elko, NV
    http://www.trainweb.org/mccloudrails
     
  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I suppose there's zero chance the rails will remain in place? I wonder how viable the remnants will be? Fear the whole thing will be gone in the next few years.

    :(

    Boxcab E50
     
  3. SP Cabforward

    SP Cabforward TrainBoard Member

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    Thats to bad I never had the chance to get up there and look around. Guess I'll have to do that one of these next weekends. And I live so close too. :( :(

    What about the offer of financial assistance by those Seaside people? Did the McCloud not take it?

    [ October 17, 2005, 12:42 PM: Message edited by: SP Cabforward ]
     
  4. JDLX

    JDLX TrainBoard Member

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    Sounds like you may still have a chance, SP Cabforward...McCloud Railway filed a request for extension of time with the STB today. They point out in their filing that parties wishing to file OFA's have until 24 October to do so, which is only seven days away. The railroad indicated that it would take them at least a couple weeks to pull the information requested by Seaside Holdings together, and to allow for that they "suggest" that STB go back and revise their schedule to make any OFA's due 10 days after the McCloud gets the requested information to Seaside Holdings.

    No response from STB yet...perhaps later this week.

    Jeff Moore
    Elko, NV
     
  5. marty coil

    marty coil TrainBoard Supporter

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    East of McCloud there are some old pssenger cars. One I know is an SP&S. Tried to walk in and see them but was gated on the street side. Does anyone know the status of those cars?????????
     
  6. Ironhorseman

    Ironhorseman Staff Member

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    Marty ... I believe the cars you are referring to belong to Mr. Fred Kepner of Merrill, Oregon. He owns most of the equipment that is stored at the McCRR for use in a future railroad museum.
     
  7. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Jeff-

    Does this mean there's still a tiny chance for keeping the rails in place?

    [​IMG]

    Boxcab E50
     
  8. SP Cabforward

    SP Cabforward TrainBoard Member

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    We can only hope.
     
  9. marty coil

    marty coil TrainBoard Supporter

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    Bill
    Some of that stuff is really good looking, but it looks like it's falling into disrepair. That would be a shame. Do you have any idea how many cars he has?????
     
  10. Ironhorseman

    Ironhorseman Staff Member

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    I have no idea what his holdings are Marty. I know that it is his SOP to purchase equipment, dismantle it to some extent, (for some unknown reason) and just let it sit and rot. If you ever go up to Merrill, Or you can see a string of steam locomotives off in the distance that belong to him. All of them are just about ruined. He had a Sierra 2-6-6-2 at McCloud that I would love to see up and running again but I'm sure the boiler is rusted out from being out in the elements for so many years.
    He stores 4 cars at the Yreka Western, which are used on the Blue Goose. They too are starting to rust out. :(
     
  11. John Barnhill

    John Barnhill TrainBoard Member

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    Here's a couple pics of Rayonier #38 stored on the McCloud. Still looks much the same from a trip I took just recently. Fence is gone now though.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  12. John Barnhill

    John Barnhill TrainBoard Member

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    Here's a few shots of Fred's stuff in Merrill,OR taken just recently.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  13. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Well, it's a better fate, than having met the scrappers torch. But still very sad to see.

    :(

    Boxcab E50
     
  14. JDLX

    JDLX TrainBoard Member

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    All told Fred owns around a dozen coaches..8 or so in McCloud, the three coaches and a flat in Yreka, and a coach or two in Klamath Falls. Most of these are ex-MOW cars of one type or another. At one point Fred intended to open the Great Western Railroad Museum, and in the early 1980's he chose McCloud as the future home for his collection. Fred obtained the old Champion International truck shop building on the eastern edge of McCloud, and he started moving parts of his collection to McCloud...in addition to the passenger cars he had three ex-BN NW-2's, an old BN caboose, an ex-NP wooden bunk car, and the Sierra #'s 18 and 38. In late 1985/early 1986 he brought a lawsuit against the McCloud River over some breach of contract issues, and McCloud owner Itel Rail told the railroad to give Fred whatever he wanted to make the lawsuit go away...as a result Fred added the #25, a Burro crane, a Brownhoist crane, a flat car, a snowplow, and possibly a Plymouth switcher to his collection. Unfortunately for Fred, he either could not or chose not to pay storage fees to the McCloud for his collection, and in late 1994/early 1995 the railroad initiated legal proceedings against Fred to collect on the debts. The railroad was on the verge of taking all of his equipment stored on the property when the two parties struck a deal giving the railroad back the #25. Shortly after that Fred moved some of his equipment down to a strip of land next to the truck shop- where John took the photos he posted here. The fence did come down in late 2002/early 2003, and Fred moved the #38's tender to Merrill during that time frame. He made preparations to start moving out the rest of the #38, but he has not done so as of yet. The Siskiyou County tax assessor did sieze that equipment and was on the verge of auctioning it off to settle a back tax bill that Fred owed the county when someone paid it up for him.

    When Weyerhaeuser elected to scrap the Oregon, California & Eastern in the early 1990's Fred submitted three bids, trying to buy parts or all of that railroad for his museum. Weyerhaeuser rejected all three offers, and then refused to re-consider when he appealed those decisions all the way to the top levels of the company.

    A year ago Martin Hansen released a list of equipment that the museum was planning to sell off. The list included all coaches in McCloud, Yreka, and Klamath Falls, plus all of the ex-McCloud m-o-w equipment in McCloud and an ex-SP wrecking crane and associated relief train that he owned in Klamath Falls. I have not heard if any of that equipment sold or not. No locomotives appeared on the list.

    As for the tracks...whether they stay in place or not depends on how serious interested parties are in trying to buy it...

    Jeff Moore
    Elko, NV
    http://www.trainweb.org/mccloudrails
     
  15. Ironhorseman

    Ironhorseman Staff Member

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    Jeff .. his cars still remain at the Yreka Western at this time. If he ever claims them, I would imagine that he'll have to truck them out. The cars are not in good enough shape that the CORP and then the UP would haul them to Merrill. I don't know if Fred has the funds to move them. He may be depending upon prospective buyers to pay for that eventuality. To date, and to my knowledge, there's been no one interested in any of the cars at YWRR.
     
  16. SP Cabforward

    SP Cabforward TrainBoard Member

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    I saw the 38 in April of '04, when I was camping in McCloud. Me and my dad were driving around town and came upon it by accident. It didn't really appear to be that bad from what I could tell. The sheet metal surrounding the cylinders has holes rusted into it, and the extension for the stack in the smoke box is rusted through in some parts, probably becuase the smoke box door wasn't shut all the way. I tried to get the latches to shut it better, but I didn't have any tools to do it with. I was also able to get a look inside the cab. The door on the fireman's side was open so I looked inside. I wasn't actually able to go in becasue it appeared that there was equipment or something stored in the cab, but everything seemed to be in good condition from what I saw.

    I took a couple pictures so I'll try and find them. Dad and I also looked around the south end of the yard. It was sunday afternoon so nobady was about, but there was a boxcar that was shoved of the siding and looked liked it had been there for a while. It was still connected to a string of boxcars. It most of been shoved pretty hard too, becuase the entire car was ran off the siding, but I forgot to get pictures of that.
     
  17. John Barnhill

    John Barnhill TrainBoard Member

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    Jeff-
    You mention three BN NW2's. On a trip a few years ago, I ran accross three BN switchers of one sort or nother at McCloud. They were very disassembled like they were being scrapped. I did get pics of each one as best I could but don't have them available for posting. Would these be the three you have mentioned??
     
  18. JDLX

    JDLX TrainBoard Member

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    John- those are the three switchers. I don't know if Fred scrapped them or if he sold them to someone else to scrap...but a private party cut them up in late 2001/early 2002. A few parts still remain above the shop building.

    Bill- all of the cars on Fred's for sale list are to be sold FOB from wherever they sit now...which means that it would be up to any buyers to actually move the cars.

    I've read some glowing promises by the new YW management that they will have the excursion train up and running next year. Any progress/news on that? Any idea what they plan to use for equipment?

    One semi-humorous story involving the scrapping of those BN switchers...the guy who cut them up brought a small hydraulic crane in to help with the job. He finished up and then disappeared, leaving the crane sitting up there above the shop. Eventually that got to be too much for the railroad, as they had a couple UP chip racks lying on their side about a dozen miles east of town that had been there for a while and needed to go away...to make a long story short the day the railroad hot-wired the crane and took it out to go get those chip racks happened to be the same day that the crane's owner finally showed back up in town to get it...the railroad ended up fixing everything that was wrong with the crane for that little stunt, but they got those chip racks loaded on hospital cars...

    Jeff Moore
    Elko, NV
     
  19. JDLX

    JDLX TrainBoard Member

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    That boxcar...that happened on a weekend...somehow a cut of cars got loose in the upper end of the yard and rolled downhill, with that car coming to rest where you saw it. The car sat like that for a long time before they finally got it back on the rails.

    Jeff Moore
    Elko, NV
     
  20. SP Cabforward

    SP Cabforward TrainBoard Member

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    So thats what happend to those box cars. I thought it was just the crew not paying attention to what was going on and just decided to leave it.
     

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