Now is the time to bring back the Shasta Daylight Train!

Once in a more graceful age, a person could ride a train in comfort during daylight hours through Redding, Dunsmuir, and on past Mt. Shasta. A journey of rare beauty. Now only available in darkness. Bring back the Shasta Daylight!

Riders watched Mt Shasta go by in daylight hours from a comfortable railcar with an observation dome. They enjoyed meals in the articulated Pullman diner-tavern-lounge car, which offered 3 railcar length unimpeded interior space. If you prefer travelling by car, take a look at this 1966 fairlane.

shasta daylight in redding caThis from Wikipedia:

The Shasta Daylight was a Southern Pacific Railroad passenger train between Oakland Pier in Oakland, California, and Portland, Oregon. It started on July 10, 1949 and was SP’s third “Daylight” streamliner; it had a fast 15 hour 30 minute schedule in either direction for the 713-mile (1,147 km) trip through some of the most beautiful mountain scenery of any train in North America. The Shasta Daylight replaced heavyweight trains on the same route that had taken nearly a day and night to complete the run. The Shasta Daylight was the first diesel powered Daylight and the only Daylight to run beyond California. The scenic route of the Shasta Daylight passed its namesake Mount Shasta in daylight hours.

Rail proposal2

Rail proposal3Since this service was discontinued, many things have changed. The population of all the communities once served by the Shasta Daylight has increased dramatically, and along with it the need for transportation and recreation alternatives. Imagine the businesses that could be created with trainfulls of Bay Area and Sacramento people looking to tour and shop the areas around Redding, Dunsmuir, and Shasta.
The infrastructure is already in place.We just need a daylight train.

News! Even Sacramentoans want this train to return!
This article about daylight passenger rail service in the Northstate appeared recently in The Bee.
Rail proposal
It’s an attractive concept. And it’s been done before.

From American Rails:

“The Shasta Daylight: While the Southern Pacific would field an entire fleet of streamlined Daylight passenger trains, only one, the Shasta Daylight was a long distance train, as the rest were regional runs serving several different California cities. The popularity of the Daylight was incredibly high, even through the early 1960s.”

More from American Rails:

Starting off in Oakland the train passed through beautiful northern California and then through the Cascades towards its final stop at Portland along the way passing locations like Mount Hood, Odell Lake, Crater Lake, and other spectacular features of the Pacific Northwest. What made the trip even that much more memorable was the extra large windows built into the Pullman-Standard cars for maximum sightseeing and outdoor viewing…

Canadian rail journeys advertise heavily in the Bay Area, and obviously meet a demand for recreation and travel. Below, an ad from the Sunday SF Chronicle. Meanwhile, an equally beautiful rail journey nearby is unavailable. Why?

Typical Canadian rail advertisement. Click to enlarge.

Typical Canadian rail advertisement. Click to enlarge.

“Winner of Eight World Travel Awards.” Look at all the affiliated tour business in their various getaway packages. “25 Years of Life Changing Experiences.”
Only tank cars enjoy these Siskiyou views now.

Only tank cars enjoy these Siskiyou views now.

Our train town sees only passing freight, no doubt on the way to be picked up by trucks (like those runs) on the next stage of its journey.
train crossing in redding ca

A rail bridge crossing Lake Shasta.

A rail bridge crossing Lake Shasta.

Only freight cars enjoy the amazing scenery of the Sacramento Canyon now.

Only freight cars enjoy the amazing scenery of the Sacramento Canyon now.

Bring back passenger travel in the light!

Bring back passenger travel in the light!

If only passengers could see us in the daylight!

Bring back the Shasta Daylight!
Rail Amtrak

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