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Model Train Help EBook

Southern Pacific

Passenger Trains

The Sierra


In Issue 33 of the SPHTS publication Trainline, Fred Hill had a list of all passenger trains that he could find names for. One of them was the Sierra, the only information he had was that it ran from 1928.

While browsing John Signor's book: Donner Pass, I found the following information:

The train was called various names over the years, but was originally called the Reno Passenger, then the Tonopah Express, then the Sierra Special and finally the Sierra.

Train No. Effective Notes
13-14 April 5, 1903 Reno Passenger established
Nov 22, 1903 discontinued
May 15, 1904 Re-established
Oct 1, 1904 discontinued
Oct 12, 1904 Re-established
Sep 3, 1905 Became Tonopah Express
23-24 Nov 19, 1906 Tonopah Express receives new numbers
Jun 2, 1918 discontinued on Mountain due to wartime restrictions, continues to run Sparks-Mina
Jun 1, 1919 Restored as Tonopah Express
Mar 21, 1920 No.23 became Sparks-SF passenger
May 3, 1925 Trains became Sierra Special
Oct 1, 1925 No.23 became Sparks-SF passenger, No.24 became Tonopah Express
Jun 6, 1926 Trains once again became Sierra Special
Nov 14, 1926 Trains once again became Sparks-SF passenger and Tonopah Express
Mar 4, 1928 Name changed to Sierra
May 3, 1931 Trains 23-24 are discontinued
224 Feb 26, 1933 Sierra re-established eastbound only
210-211 April 1, 1935 No.224 the Sierra renumbered 210, No.211 established westbound
211-289 Feb 2, 1936 No.211 renumbered No.289
210-289-295 Aug 1, 1939 No.289 operated daily except Sunday and Public Holidays, No.295 Sundays and Public Holidays
Mar 8, 1942 210, 289 and 295 discontinued

From a 1935 Public Timetable, it was seen that the train ran from San Francisco to Sacramento and then to Reno.

Train 210 -- SIERRA -- Train 211
San Francisco, Sacramento, Reno
  9 00LvSan Francisco (Market St.).....Ar  9 32
  9 35LvOakland Pier .............Sou. Pac.Ar  9 05
  9 46LvOakland (16th St.).....Sou. Pac.Ar  8 58
  9 56LvBerkeley ....................Sou. Pac.Ar  8 48
12 10ArSacramento ...............Sou. Pac.Lv  6 30
12 35LvSacramento ...............Sou. Pac.Ar  6 10
  7 15LvReno ...........................Sou. Pac.Lv11 59
Read DownRead Up

Dark numbers are PM times.

Standard Sleeper San Francisco to Reno returns on No.9

Occupied until 8:00am at Reno; ready for occupancy at Reno at 9:00pm

Coaches San Francisco and Reno, Sparks

In a 1940 SP Public Timetable, only 210 is listed, I cannot seem to find the 289 or 295 trains. It is also considerably more difficult for me to interpret as train 210 is listed in at least 4 sections. There are now stops in Truckee for connections to Lake Tahoe, and times at Reno for stage connections to Alturas and Klamath Falls among other places.

The Sierra was discontinued in 1942 so did not make the 1946 SP Equipment circular.



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Tuesday, 28 February 2006