What to see or do in Fresno?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by TrainsWinnipeg, Aug 23, 2008.

  1. Well im headed to Fresno for 2 weeks for some training, What is there to see or do thats train related?

  2. allkingmen

    allkingmen New Member

    Find a nice air-conditioned room!:cool:
    Or, head south and take a look at the Loop.:wave:
  3. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    There's supposed to be a nice downtown to explore, go see a movie, eat at a local resturaunt. As for Railfanning options, check out the San Joaquin Valley Railroad: http://www.trainweb.org/KernJunction/sjvrgallery.htm

    The BNSF and UP go through town, but it makes for much better photographs if you head out of town aways into the countryside. There are some funky small rural towns out there if you want to explore.

    I just found this link to a local club, it might make for a worthwhile visit: http://www.fresnomodelrailroadclub.org/index.html

    A local fresno hobbyshop is apparently going out of business, check out this exhaustive list of what's for sale, give them a call and see if you want to pay them a visit. http://www.fresnomodelrailroadclub.org/ClosingList02.htm
  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Take hwy 41 North toward Yosemite. You will begin to see signs along the road telling you to "Ride the Logger." Just on the other side of Oakhurst you will see the driveway on the right side of the highway for the "Logger." It is a museum commemorating high Sierra railroad logging operations including a restored shay from the old Westside Lumber Co pulling passenger cars for tourists. If memory serves, it is about 45 minutes to 1 hour North of Fresno on hwy 41.

    If you have time to to drive about 150-200 miles on a weekend, go to Jamestown. There are two primary routes you can take. Probably the fastest route is to go North out of Fresno on hwy 99 to Turlock. At Turlock, take hwy 165 also called J14 to the town of Oakdale. In Oakdale go Northeast on hwy 108 to where it joins hwy 49 and follow 49/108 to Jamestown. The more scenic route is to take 41 Northout of Fresno to Oakhurst and turn left in Oakhust on hwy49. Be aware that 49 is a twisting mountian road most of the way North. It is a good highway, but if you are nervous about driving over mountain roads, you might prefer to take the other route. Yo will encounter mountain roads either way, but not as many by going North on hwy99. In Jamestown is the Railtown 1897 State Historical Park. It was the old headquarters of the Sierra Railroad, there is a train ride, tours through the old railroad shops, and such.

    Another trip that will take a couple of days to do is to go about 4 hours North of Fresno on hwy 99 to Sacramento to the California State Railroad Museum in Old Sacramento. If you go to the Museum, when you get your ticket to go in you can walk right into the museum, but don't. Take the time to walk up the ramp to the movie theatre and go to the 10-15 minute introductory film first. When the film ends you will then enter the Museum through a life size diorama of a tunnel being blasted out of solid rock in the Sierra Nevada Mountains complete with Chinese "powder monkeys" hanging off the walls to plant their charges and the Leland Stanford 4-4-0 locomotive. In my opinion it is the most impressive way to enter any railroad museum. As you then walk past the Stanford, you go out of the tunnel into the first floor of the museum.

    Farther North from Sacramento is the town of Porterville, home to the Western Pacific Railroad Museum. There you can even have the chance to operate a real deisel locomotive on the museum grounds. I'll post a few links:



    I tried google for the Logger, but it looks like they do not have a web page, but the Shilo Inn in Oakhurst promotes the Sugar Pine Railroad/Logger on their web page.
  5. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I forgot to mention that the S.P. and the Santa Fe both had Valley divisions that are still operative by the U.P. and the BNSF. In fact the Valley line is the U.P. North-South mainline on the west coast. There is a lot of agriculture in the central valley, probably the richest farmland in California, so there is still quite a bit of railfanning that you can do right in the area. I think the 2 mainlines run parallel about 5 miles apart from Sacramento to Bakersfield. I'm not sure where the BNSF goes since the merger. The Santa Fe main would have originally ended around Sacramento, but of course the BNSF goes all the way to the Pacific Northwest. The valley line is also the U.P. mainline North to at least Portland, Oregon. I'm not sure if U.P. goes across the Columbia or not.
  6. Uintah Dave

    Uintah Dave Member

    Russ is right both the Callifornia State RR Museum and the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine RR outside of Oakhurst are good stops

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