Orange County Model Engineers

April 20, 2009

Michele told me about this train ride when she heard about our train activities yesterday. The Orange County Model Engineers give free public train rides on their 7 1/2″ gauge Mackerel Flats and Goat Hill Junction Railroad over 5 miles of track on the second full weekend of every month. They are in Fairview Park in Costa Mesa, CA. Here’s a bird’s eye view of the layout.

Skunk Train – Fort Bragg and Willits

April 20, 2009

Grandpa Ron and I took the Skunk Train from Willits to Fort Bragg and back several years ago. It is a great family trip through the redwoods. Here’s their photo gallery.

What is a skunk train??? Here’s the explanation from an April 1, 2009, Skunk Train press release:

With the occasional whistles as it chugs through tunnels, over bridges and past open meadows, the train follows the coastal “Redwood Route” as it has since 1885. Built as a logging railroad, the Skunk line began that year as a logical vehicle for moving massive redwood logs to Mendocino Coast sawmills from the rugged back country. Steam passenger service was started in 1904, extended to the town of Willits in 1911, and discontinued in 1925 when the self-powered, yellow “Skunk” rail cars were inaugurated. The little trains were quickly nicknamed for their original gas engines, which prompted folks to say, “You can smell ’em before you can see ’em.”

National Museum of the American Indian

April 20, 2009

The National Museum of the American Indian is one awesome museum with buildings and activities in Washington DC and in New York City. Since this is one of my interest areas, I have been a member of the NMAI even before it opened the DC museum. I have only enjoyed the magazines and on-line material but friends who have visited said the museums are great, too. Here is the calendar of events for both New York City and Washington D.C.

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