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LATEST NEWS & EVENTS on the OREGON PACIFIC RR  2012
Copyright © 2004-2013 All Rights Reserved
Last Update: April 10, 2012
Photos of the No. 5100 at the ORHC on Display
Update: January 6, 2013

The OPR has loaned to ORHF, its GE 70 tonner diesel locomotive, No. 5100.   The 5100 is a historical GE 70 tonner
purchased by the Southern Pacific as a brand new locomotive in 1949.   In 1977 it was sold to Weyerhauser where it served
on the Weyerhauser Springfield Branch until it was closed in 1986.   The OPR purchased this engine in 1989 for several
years it was used to pull scrap and work trains while scrapping out the remains of the PTC Boring Branch.   The OPR has not
used the 5100 in operational service since the early 1990s.   However, a complete restoration was begun and largely finished,
including new paint and engine.   The 5100 still requires some minor work to be operational, but the OPR has pushed this
project back due to other higher priorities.

In mid December 2012, the 5100 was moved by the OPR to the Oregon Rail Heritage Center where it is currently on outdoor
display at the south end of the complex.   It is expected to remain there on display for at least several months.
Trimet/OPR Diamonds Have Arrived, East Portland Division to be Temporarily Closed Soon
Update: January 6, 2013

The Trimet Milwaukie Light Rail Project is in full swing with massive construction underway on many parts of the new right of
way.  One of those projects will be building an at grade crossing over the OPR East Portland Division mainline, near the East
Portland Yards.   The double track crossing will be one of only a few existing in the entire U.S. where a Light Rail transit line
crosses over a Common Carrier Railroad at grade level.

When complete, an interlocking plant will protect both railroads.   Per agreements with Trimet, they will have the right of way
most of the time, protected from the OPR mainline via remote operated derails.   When the OPR needs to enter or leave the
East Portland Yard, they will call the Trimet dispatcher, who will be required to lock out the Max Trains and allow the OPR
through.

The installation of the diamonds will be a major project and will involve concrete pours and additional work to the nearby
relocated Water Ave.   The OPR will be severed from the East Portland Yards while this work is being done for approximately
two weeks, beginning January 20th.
11th Street Crossover Switch Project Nearing Completion
Update: January 10, 2013

Last year, OPR crews began construction of a new crossover switch near 11th Street on the East Portland Division.  The
switch was to connect the mainline with an existing siding.   That siding was extended during the reconstruction of the 11th
street crossing last year and plans are to extend it further.    The crossover switch project was put on hold as crews worked on
other projects, but crews have returned to the crossover project and are expected to have it completed within a week.

Once the crossover is finished, plans are to relocate the cars being stored on the siding, over to the Oregon City spur for
continued storage.

The crossover switch is part of a larger project to extend the existing siding to as far north as 9th and Linn Street where it will
connect back to the mainline and allow for a run-around track.   An additional spur off of the siding is planned as a storage
spur for the OPR's Santa Rosa with a car barn constructed to protect the car.

In this photo, taken yesterday, crews are installing the long ties needed for the crossover and switches.
Prep Work for Diamond Install Continues at the East Portland Yards
Update: January 14, 2013

Construction crews are preparing to install the crossing diamonds near the East Portland Yards where the Trimet Milwaukie
Light Rail will cross over the OPR.   Light rail track has been laid just west of the OPR in the new Water Street alignment in
preparation for paving Water Street.  This new track will be connected to the diamonds when they are installed around
January 20th.   In the below photos you can see the new light rail track.   Also included is a photo rendering from Trimet
showing what the general area will look like including the OPR/Trimet diamonds and crossing.
11th Street Crossover Work Continues
Update: January 14, 2013

OPR crews have installed and ballasted the needed ties for the new crossover at 11th street on the East Portland Division.
Track has been tamped and is now ready for rails and switch installations of the crossover.   Work on the crossover is
expected to be completed this week, after which, the cars and locomotive in the siding will be removed.    In the last photo,
looking north, the siding currently ends just north of 11th street, but the siding will be extended all the way to 9th street, where
a second switch will be installed.  An additional spur will be built onto property owned by the OPR as long term storage spur
and car barn for the
Santa Rosa.
Historic PGE Tower Next to the OPR is Removed.
Update: January 21, 2013

As part of the new Sellwood Bridge Construction, PGE recently removed one of its large power line towers that was located
next to the OPR tracks.   The towers are a fixture along the OPR's East Portland Branch and actually follow the line from East
Portland all the way to Estacada where they feed power from the Faraday Dam rebuilt on the site of the former Cazadaro Dam
that at one point supplied the power for the trolley and motor car lines for most of Portland.    The power lines were rerouted
to new towers.   Photos by Dick Samuels, OPR owner.
Sellwood Bridge Move
Update: January 21, 2013

This past weekend, construction crews replacing the Sellwood Bridge completed a major milestone as they moved the old
bridge onto new piers to make room for the new bridge construction, while allowing traffic to still pass over the old bridge.   
The project was massive in scale.   The Sellwood bridge project has potential to have a major effect on the OPR as the OPR
East Portland Division tracks pass under the east Sellwood bridge approach.    The project is expected to take several more
years and so far, impact to OPR service has be minimal as crews have not yet begun major work on the east approach.  Work
on the east approach is expected to take place during the latter part of the project, possibly in the next year or so.   Photos by
OPR owner Dick Samuels.
OPR/Trimet Crossing Construction Now Underway
Update: January 25, 2013

Construction crews for the Milwaukie Light Rail have begun construction on the new at grade crossing that will cross the OPR
mainline just south of the OPR's new East Portland Yard.   The Light Rail double track will cross over the single track OPR
mainline, requiring the installation of new brand new crossing diamonds.   More information on these diamonds and photos
can been seen further down on this page.   We'll update on the construction as it progresses.

The project requires that the OPR be severed from it's East Portland Yards for approximately two weeks, while crews install
the new crossing.   Photo by OPR owner Richard Samuels.
OPR 1202 Now Operating on the Molalla Branch Division
Update: January 25, 2013

On Wednesday January 23rd, Union Pacific crews moved the
OPR 1202 from East Portland, down the UP mainline, to the
Canby Interchange.   The 1202 was set out at the south end of the interchange where it was picked up by OPR crews today
and taken to Liberal to make it's first revenue move on the Molalla Branch.   Loads and empties were hauled back to Canby
later in the day.

The 1202 was moved to the Molalla Division because the primary Molalla Division locomotive, the No. 801, is suffering from
mechanical problems that require a complete engine rebuild.  That rebuild is scheduled for later this winter and will take at
least several months.  Meanwhile the No. 1202 will be the primary locomotive for the Molalla Division along with the
No. 901,
which serves primarily on the west end of the branch for American Steel.   Below photos taken by OPR's Brian Samuels.
Trimet/OPR Crossing Diamonds Installed, Construction Continues
Update: January 28, 2013

Over the past weekend, construction crews installed the two crossing diamonds on the OPR's East Portland Division, near the
East Portland Yards.  The diamonds will allow Trimet's Milwaukie Light Rail to cross the OPR at grade.    While the diamonds
have been welded into place, the project will continue for several more weeks as crews contain both crossings in concrete.
Photos by OPR owner Richard Samuels.
East Portland Division 11th Street Crossover Nearly Complete
Update: February 7, 2013

The 11th Street Crossover Project is now almost finished.  Crews have installed and spiked all of the rail and switches.  Switch
stands have been installed at both ends.   The crossover needs to be ballasted and tamped which will happen next week and
it will then be open for train movement.    The box car and passenger car in the siding will be moved and stored on the nearby
Oregon City spur.   The No. 187 locomotive will be moved to the OPR shops it preparation to be disassembled by its new
owners.   The below photos were taken earlier in the week and show the project prior to adding the final rail.
Trimet/OPR Crossing Diamonds Installed, Project Finished, East Portland Division Reopened.
Update: February 7, 2013

The East Portland Division is now back in service as crews have finished installing the two Trimet diamond crossings over the
OPR mainline near the East Portland Yards.   The extensive project involved laying new rail, installing the two diamonds and
pouring concrete around both diamonds in preparation for the area Max/Bus Station construction.

The below photos include the final days of construction this week as well as the No. 100 making the first movement over the
diamonds today as a load of cars is brought in to Milwaukie.

The nearby Water Ave is now also open to vehicle traffic.
Golf Junction Rearranged
Update: February 26, 2013

Golf Junction looks a little dififerent today.  As part of the new crossover switch at 11th street and the plan to relocate the 187
to the shop area for scrapping (see other news post), several cars were moved at Golf Junction.   The once empty Oregon
City Spur is now occupied with a derelic box car and passenger car that once occupied the siding at Gold Junction.  The 187
was moved from fenced compound at the end of the siding to the shop.    This leaves room for car storage on the Golf
Junction siding while the siding is expanded to 9th street.
OPR 187 Prepped for Scrapping
Update: February 26, 2013

The OPR 187 will be scrapped soon.   It was moved from it's storage compound at Golf Junction to the OPR shops, where
scrapping will begin soon by the new owner.   Plans are to save the engine, which will be installed in the OPR's 1127
restoration project.  Other parts were saved for OPR use.  The trucks, frame and body will be scrapped and retained by the
new owner.    The OPR has offered the 187 for sale for the last several years, but with no takers.   The fate of the 187 was
sealed several years ago, when metal thieves broke into it and completely ransacked the cab and cut all of the traction motor
cables.   The damage made repairs uneconomical.   With the purchase of several new locomotives in the meanwhile and one
locomotive restoration already underway, there was no economical reason to retain or restore the 187.   Unfortunately
because no buyers could be found and because metal thieves continued to break into the compound and dismantle and steel
parts, it was decided that the remaining asset value of the 187 had to be utilized and it was sold to a scrapper.

The below photos show the 187 set out on McBrod Ave, just below the OPR shops, next to the OPR's newest locomotive, the
1413.
OPR Hosts a Wedding Train
Update: February 26, 2013

This past Sunday, the OPR hosted a wedding train for a couple.   The wedding took place at the Oaks Pioneer Church,
located near the Spokane Street crossing on the OPR.   The wedding party was transported to Oaks Station via the Santa
Rose and 1413, where they deboarded and held their reception at the Oaks Park Pavilion.   Congratulations to the couple.
OPR Hosts its First Charter of 2013...More to Come.
Update: March 9, 2013

Today, the OPR hosted its first charter train of the 2013 season.   The charter was a birthday train and lasted several hours.  
The weather was perfect on this early March day.   Also for the first time, the OPR made a stop at the new ORHF facility and
allowed the passengers to tour the new home of Portland's three famous steam locomotives.

For more information on our charters, please visit our
charters page.   Or call 503-659-5452
Primer Mover Engine Swap of the OPR 801 Begins
Update: March 28,  2013

The OPR's No. 801 has faithfully served on the OPR Molalla Division since approximately 1993.  Still today a favorite of the
OPR crews, the locomotive has been repaired several times during it's life on the OPR, but now requires a major engine
overhaul.   This month, OPR crews are removed and hood and removed the prime mover  and set it aside for future rebuild.
In the next few months, the engine out of the OPR No. 187 will be removed and installed in the 801.   The No. 187 has been
sold and is slated to be scrapped in the next month or so.   The engine in the 801 was completely overhauled years ago, but
never used.  Both the 801 and 187 share the same 8-567-B engine.   Eventually the current 801 engine will be completely
rebuilt and installed in the No. 1127 restoration project.
Car Drives onto OPR Tracks on the East Portland Division
Update: April 1,  2013

Early last week in the last evening hours, a car mistakenly drove onto the OPR tracks on the East Portland Division, near the
Goodwill crossing.   The vehicle apparently mistook the tracks as a road and driver drove until he was high centered.  No
damage to the tracks were done, however OPR officials had to respond to the scene.   The vehicle was towed off of the tracks
without incident and the driver appeared to be uninjured.
OPR Celebrates 22 Years of Common Carrier Service on this Day
Update: April 1,  2013

It was this day, 22 years ago, that the OPR officially began operations as a common carrier railroad and took over the
Portland Traction Company operation.    Known originally as the East Portland Traction Company, Dick Samuels formed the
company several years earlier to full fill his contract to scrap the Portland Traction Company Boring Branch and eventually
take over the remaining operations.   By 1993, Mr. Samuels would purchase the Southern Pacific Molalla Branch, naming that
operation the Molalla Western.  By 1997 both operations were officially combined under a new name, the Oregon Pacific
Railroad.   For more information about the OPR history, check out our
OPR history page.
OPR Hosts Another Charter
Update: April 2,  2013

On this day, the OPR hosts another birthday charter on the East Portland Division.  Today the charter consisted of the 1413,
open air car and former Samtrak caboose.   The train stopped at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center, where the passengers and
guests toured the museum and had lunch for several hours.

For more information about how to charter a train on the OPR, please visit our
OPR Charters Page.
No. 1202 Will Be Moved to the Molalla Branch This Week
Update: January 21, 2013

OPR Engine No.
1202 is expected to be transferred to the Molalla Branch sometime this week.   Union Pacific crews will move
the engine light engine, single unit from the East Portland Yards to the Molalla Branch interchange.    Currently the Molalla
Branch has two locomotives on site, the No.
801 and the No. 901.   The 801 has been the primary workhorse of the branch for
almost 20 years, but its engine needs a major overhaul.   The 1202 will replace the 801 for at least several months or longer
until the 801 can be repaired.  Plans are to use engine parts from the derelict No. 187, which has a rebuilt engine.

The 1202 has been the primary workhorse of the East Portland Division since 2005.   It's been augmented by the famous No.
100 and most recently by the No. 1413.   Those two engines will soon be the only operable power on the East Portland
Division.   The No.
1127 is slated to have its restoration continued in the future and it will likely become the primary engine
when completed several years from now.   Until then, the 100 and 1413 will serve in that role.
Dismantling of the No. 187 has Begun
Update: April 6,  2013

Recently OPR crews have begun the dismantle process of the No. 187.  While the 187 has been sold to scrappers who will
eventually scrap the entire locomotive, the OPR has an agreement with the new owner to salvage the engine out of the 187,
which will be swapped into the OPR's No.
801.   Since this project has priority, the OPR has begun the process of removing
the hood and rails and other parts of the locomotive to gain access to the engine, prior to the new owner scrapping the rest of
the locomotive sometime in the future.
Fire Damaged OPR Passenger Car Sold to New Owner
Update: April 6,  2013

Several years ago the OPR acquired a fire damaged passenger car with the intention of fully restoring it and using it on
excursions.    Work on the car had begun, but was put on hold due to other pressing projects.   Meanwhile, the OPR
purchased the already restored and operational
Santa Rosa Business Car and work on the former car was suspended
indefinitely.   The passenger car languished on the Golf Junction siding with the likelihood of being scrapped in the future.

However, it's now received a new lease on life as it was just recently purchased by a new owner who intends to fully restore
the car.   As part of the sale agreement, the car is being stored on the OPR's Oregon City Spur.   The new owners have since
cleaned out the inside of the car, fenced it off and covered the windows.   Because the car will be stored on the OPR for the
indefinite future, we'll be keeping tabs on its restoration and look forward to seeing the progress, so stayed tuned.   
New Historical Portland Traction Company Photos
Update: April 9,  2013

Two new historical photos of the Portland Traction Company have surfaced.  Both have been added to our
Portland Traction Company History Page.    The first photo was taken at Cazadaro at an unknown date, but probably 1920s.  
Cazadaro was the far eastern end of the PEPCo and interurban lines.   It was located east of Estacada and was the
interchange for several logging railroads that continued east into the Cascade Range.

The second photo is the EMD builder's photo of the Portland Traction Company's No. 200, taken in 1952.  The No. 200 is the
sister engine to the OPR's No. 100, former
Portland Traction Company No. 100.   Both engines still exist today with the OPR
operating the 100 in regular service while the 200 is believe to still be operating as a plant switcher back east.