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Tehachapi Loop, Tehachapi

Categories: Historic Sites, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.6/5 based on 130+ reviews on the web
The Tehachapi Loop is a 0.73mi long spiral, or helix, on the Union Pacific Railroad line through Tehachapi Pass, of the Tehachapi Mountains in Kern County, south-central California. The line connects Bakersfield and the San Joaquin Valley to Mojave in the Mojave Desert. The line, which sees an average of almost 40 trains each day, is one of the busiest single-track mainlines in the world.With its frequent trains and spectacular scenery, the Loop is one of the prime railfan areas in the country. In 1998, the Loop was named a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark and is now California Historical Landmark #508.HistoryOne of the engineering feats of its day, the Loop was built by Southern Pacific Railroad to ease the grade over Tehachapi Pass. Construction began in 1874, and the line opened in 1876. Contributors to the project's construction include Arthur De Wint Foote and the project's chief engineer, William Hood.Rising at a steady 2% grade, the track gains in elevation in the Loop. A train more than long passes over itself going around the loop. At the bottom of the loop, the track passes through Tunnel 9, the ninth tunnel built as the railroad worked from Bakersfield.
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  • Oh my word if you ever get a chance to see this do so, my husband loves trains and he so wanted to do this and see a train on the loop, it was truly amazing, the train foes a full 360 deg loop passing...  read more »
  • A little off the beaten path on a slow and winding two lane (mostly) road. Once you reach for destination park you car as far on the road as you can and hike to the monument and read all about the his...  read more »
  • If you want to see a piece of American railway history than this is 'a must see' for you. A piece of engineering marvel recognized by the American society of civil engineering. Watch trains go by ever...  read more »
  • Interesting historical landmark! It is a "must see " if you like to watch trains. I wish there are some park bench on top of the hill. (35.196972, -118.532469 Google map GPS coordinates)That is the best spot to watch loop and trains. It can be a very good vista point.
  • Amazing to see what ingenuity and back-breaking work combined to produce! You may have to wait for a train but it is worth it! Beautiful area as well any time of the year.
  • Simply fascinating to watch the spectacle of an engineering feet more than 100 years old. We arrived just as the train was starting it's ascend and truthfully my mind was blown --seeing the front of the train on top of the back of the train...a must go see!
  • If you enjoy trains, engineering, history, or just the outdoors, this place is worth a visit. Only 10 minutes off Highway 58. The day we were there we caught a line of train cars that had rolled over off the tracks. Wonder how often that happens?
  • Really cool place to come and watch trains. Mondays seem to be a bit slower than the rest of the week. Watch out for rattlesnakes, saw 3 during our 2 days there.
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