Past Pictures of the Week
Welcome to Cajonpass.net ore
website is dedicated to photography of the Cajon pass that starts San
Bernardino to Barstow for the BNSF and from West Colton to Phelen on
the Union Pacific. The aim of this photographic website is to
capture the essence of this natural area as railroad tracks cut through
the mountains to reach points east in an endless battle against
nature. Please take the time review the terms and conditions and
hope people enjoy this website.
did I create this site? In the past I have posted my pictures on many
different sites but they get lost in the discussion pages or hard to
find in the thousand of postings. This site uses Photopost where
the bulk of my pictures will be housed and it is easier to have built
php site. Not to take away from other great discussion pages this
site will not allow outside users to post their pictures. For
links to other sites please click on the links on the left.
first railroad through the pass was the California Southern Railroad, a
subsidiary of Santa Fe Railway and built in the early
1880’s. Later the tracks were owned by the Atchison, Topeka &
Santa Fe with trackage rights granted to the Union Pacific. The
pass starts at 1,073 feet above sea level and reaches an elevation of
3,823 feet in the toughest 25.6 miles of rails. The ruling grade
on the original line is a 3% and a 2.2% grade on the second main line
installed in 1913. The Cajon pass was the only route for the
Santa Fe Railway to reach Los Angeles from Barstow and points east
which still holds true for the BNSF. The ruling grade from Summit
to Barstow is 1.1%.
Southern Pacific railroad did not enter The Cajon until 1967 when a
new, single-track line from West Colton to Palmdale. This line runs
fairly close to the Santa Fe with a ruling grade of 2.2% to the
Highland summit. During the failed SPSF merger talks the Southern
Pacific built the Kneebrook crossovers. These crossover was
initially not used until the merger between the Union Pacific and
Southern Pacific. A second set of crossover at Summit from the
BNSF to the UP. Today the Union Pacific line is used to run trains to
Lancaster or to Barstow (then to Yermo). Weekly a BNSF train will
run from Barstow to West Colton using the cross over at summit and vice
versa. The ruling grade from Highland to Phelen is 0.7%.
2005 BNSF has started a program to triple track the Cajon Pass from San
Bernardino to Summit. Currently the project is at Kneebrook
awaiting further approvals from the Federal government.