Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

California railroad museums

Train Talk

Summer is coming and it's time to think about getting away for those day or weekend trips that will not cost a lot. Here are some ideas for short trips to train museums and activities that are not too far of a drive. Here are just a few.

Tehachapi Railroad Depot Museum

The Depot was a railroad station in Tehachapi, California. The depot was built in 1904 along a Southern Pacific Railroad line built in 1876; the railroad founded the town of Tehachapi and drew the residents of nearby Tehichipa to the new settlement. The depot served a significant section of railroad, as it was located near the Tehachapi Loop and was one of the most active rural stations during World War II. The station later served as a warehouse and a railroad office. In 2008, the depot burned down; it was rebuilt in 2009 and now serves as the Tehachapi Depot Railroad Museum with historic railroad artifacts. The museum is located at 101 W. Tehachapi Blvd., Tehachapi, California. The museum is open Friday through Monday, 11a.m.-4p.m.

Santa Susana Railroad Historical Society

This HO scale layout is permanently located in a retired Southern Pacific depot located adjacent to the Santa Susana Park. The model is a fictional layout loosely based on the west coast route of the Southern Pacific between Los Angeles and Portland. The layout has over 400 feet of mainline, three main freight yards and several passenger stations

It is open to the public Saturday and Sunday afternoons between 1 and 4 p.m. located in the depot at 6503 Katherine Rd., Simi Valley, California.

Travel Town Railroad

The train at Griffith Park & Southern Railroad, a miniature train that circles the Travel Town Train Museum in Griffith Park. It travels over one mile of track, across a bridge, through a forest and the Old Western Town. You can also try T-6 simulator ride, a fun adventure for all. The railroad has three locomotives running over one mile of track and has called Griffith Park home since 1954.

The museum is located at 5200 Zoo Drive, Los Angeles, California. It is open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. You can contact them at (323) 662-9678.

Orange Empire Railway Museum

The Orange Empire Railway Museum is a large mainline, interurban and streetcar museum located in Riverside County. It has a large collection of streetcars including PCC cars from San Diego Electric Railway, Los Angeles Railway (narrow gauge) and San Francisco Municipal Railway. Highlights include MUNI car 1039; the second to last PCC made in the US. The Orange Empire Railway Museum is noted for its nice tramway layout and the wealth of preserved, and operable, tramway equipment. The museum is located at 2201 South, Perris, California. You can contact them at (951) 943-3020.

Fullerton Railway Plaza Association

The Fullerton Railway Plaza Association is dedicated to the preservation of the railroad heritage of Southern California through the creation of a large Interactive Railroad Attraction in the city of Fullerton, California. This facility is unique in that it embodies many facets of the world of Recreational Railroading, including preservation, restoration, archiving, education, rail fanning, modeling and many other interesting rail oriented activities.

Located at 124 East Santa Fe Ave. Fullerton, California. For more information you can contact them at (714) 278-0648.

California State Railroad Museum

Located in Old Sacramento, the California State Railroad Museum is a group of historic facilities and attractions. Regarded as one of North America's finest and most visited railroad museums, there is something here for everyone. Throughout the year, experience lavishly restored trains, engaging exhibits and unique special events. Weekends, April through September, ride behind a steam locomotive on the museum's Sacramento Southern Railroad.

The Museum is open daily, except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Guided tours and interpretive film screenings are offered daily. Located at 111 I St., Sacramento, California. You can contact them by phone at (916) 323-9280

More to come in future articles.