Southern Pacific Lines

Coast Line Division 

“The Route of the Octopus”

 
 
General Information
General
S.P. used the Coast Line to test the hottest trains because the Coast Line was the premier freight service.
Freight trains were mostly scheduled to operate in time periods left free from premium trains (i.e. Daylight, Lark,...).
SP preferred in the 50’s to operate most freight traffic as scheduled trains. When traffic needs exceeded the capacity of the eight scheduled trains on the Guadelupe subdivision, second sections would be operated. In most situations, extra through freight trains were uncommon.

Sub-division Train Numbers
From the timetables, train numbers were assigned by the subdivisions, and each one terminated, then got a new number to run to the next terminal. The trains had a number series, (i.e 800s or 900s), but they were scheduled. In the timetables there is a long time between a scheduled arrival time of a freight, and the time the next one in that direction leaves. A train would come in, they would switch it out, maybe shorten it to go up the hill, or make it bigger to go south. If you had really low-priority cars sitting in the yard, like empty drop-bottom gondolas, they might sit awhile before you had space on a train to move them out. Hot cars like perishables of course would go right out, usually on the WPB [Watsonville Perishable Block] if they were eastward loads.

Coast Line 2008
Freight trains use by the Coast Line now (2008) are oil cans, perishables, and a few autorack trains. 
Check out _COAST_discuss@ yahoogroups. com for today's Coast operations.

References
My web site  has a page dedicated to the SP train symbols. Fairly comprehensive. 
Art Fisher                                                       www.sptco.tnorr.com

In the FILES section, in the Espee Yahoo Group, is a bulletin that went out system-wide on 10-13-1985; it details and explains the SP symbol system for identifying trains, movements, and station abbreviations as of that date. The file is called "SP Train Symbols" and is scanned sideways due to the teletype paper. It was 12 pages in the SP/teletype format, which scanned as 5 jpgs.
Joel Kirk


Specific Freight Trains by Train Number
Coast Line Symbol Freights
The Coast Line symbol freights in the early 1950s were as follows.

Blue Streak
Advance Blue Streak
Gold Streak
MTS

#71 - 72 The Coast Mail, “Sad Sam”
The “Coast Mail” (officially named Passenger), was later known as “Sad Sam”. This train ran as 71 & 72, for most of it's existence. Note that both were referred to as Mail Train or Coast Mail.  

#71 and 72 used to pick up strawberries in Santa Maria, Guadalupe and take them to Oakland using express reefers. #72 was usually equally heavy as 71. That was the one the Superintendent Jimmy Jordan usually had his car coupled to.
Mac Gaddis

“Sad Sam” was certainly the railfan name for years Mac Gaddis told me that in the 1950s, he had never hear that name, but heard it in railfan contexts in the 1960s. 
Tony Thompson
Modeling the #71 - 72 The Coast Mail, “Sad Sam”
Coach Yard
The Coach Yard will be importing all new "Sad Sam" cars next year.
The project can be found at                             www.thecoachyard.com

#75 - 76     “Advance Coast Manifest East/West” Train  
The Advance sections did not get timetable recognition until 1955. Before and even after additional overnights were run as sections of the Lark. The photo in Tony's SP Official Photography Vol. 1 on page 115 is from 1958 which is after the Advance was on the timetable. They also ran as extras in some cases (before the nos. 372 and 373 were applied).

There are several photos in existence, two of which I have published in my books, of the "Advance Overnight" running in daylight hours with the number 1-75 or 1-76 in the number boards. I did not cite which rule justified this, just observed that it was done.
Tony Thompson 
Running Trains in Sections (2-75)
 Train 75 can follow 2-75. This means that the Advance CMW was running as 3-75, which apparently was the last section of 75, and so was showing just 75 in the indicators. As you recall, that was SP practice after circa 1951: the last section showed no section number.

Here is an example. There was a large fire near the right-of-way in So. Calif., causing the holding of all trains until the line was clear. Train 1-75 was the first westbound, the passenger train Lark (green markers). Train 2-75 was the CMW (originally #373) with green markers. Train 75 with no markers was the Advance CMW and the last of the Train 75's. The Dispatcher did it this way to expedite all these "hot" trains.

The reason they run a train in sections is unimportant. But if 1-75 with green goes and then 2-75 with green goes there can be NOT BE a 75 following. The third train must be 3-75 with out green if there were to be no more or with green if there is a 4th section. It does not matter what the sections are. Freight, Passenger or work train. But can not run 1-75, 2-75 followed by 75. The last one must be 3-75.

#335 - 336     Oakland Coast Merchandise East or West  ( )
This was a TOFC train.
Departed West Oakland at 6:10 p.m. in 1962.
Between 1970 and 1974 it was discontinued.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 30

#340      TOFC Special  (“Extra East”)   (eastward)	
This was a TOFC train.
Departed south out of Bakersfield to L.A.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 28

#365 - 366     Advance StarPacer
This was a TOFC train started in 1965.
Departed L.A. to Portland2.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 32

#370 - 371      The Arizona Overnight
This train operated since 1939.. TOFC traffic was added to #370 out of L.A. in 1953.
Departed L.A. to Phoenix.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 18

#371 - 372     Advance Coast Manifest East or West  (CME or CMW)
By 1955 there was enough TOFC business on the Coast to operate an advance section, S.F. to L.A. and back.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 17-19

#373 - 374     Coast Manifest East or West  (CME or CMW) / “Overnight” Service, “The Zippers”
San Francisco - Oakland - Los Angeles / Daily, except Sat., Sun., & Holidays

On October 22, 1935, the first dedicated “Overnight” was introduced. “Overnight” merchandise trains, Nos. 373-374, was also called the Coast Manifest West (373) and the Coast Manifest East (373). The trains  had "Overnight" nicknames, but not formally so named by the railroad.There was the same service, just not in dedicated trains, for a few years before that. 
Tony Thompson 

This one freight train was given first-class timetable authority operating overnight between S.F. and L.A. It was discontinued during WWII and reintroduced around 1946. This train operated, certainly in 1953.  It ran Monday through Thursday. Mondays traffic was generally lighter than the other days. On Monday there were 20 full consist, and later in the week were 40 to 60 cars. 

Certainly in the earliest days it was strictly an LCL operation (though carloads were also handled), from SP freight houses; but the key part of the deal was the pickup and delivery possibilities (not required, but available) from SP's subsidiary Pacific Motor Trucking (PMT). At the beginning of the service, there were no set outs but there were soon set outs at intermediate terminals such as Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Watsonville Junction, where the train stopped for crew changes in any event. They usually ran in full trains. The size, of course, depended on traffic, and could be from a few cars up to 25 or more on some occasions.

The Overnight used a heavyweight coach rather than a caboose when there was no caboose available. The requirement was for a car with steel wheels, because of  the speeds. This was the equipment of virtually all passenger cars, and of SP’s steel cabooses, but not of the wood cabooses. So if a steel cab wasn't available . . .
Tony Thompson

There is the photo on pg. 96 of "Those Daylight 4-8-4's" that shows Overnight train No. 373 with 13 boxcars plus a rider coach on the rear.
John Sweetser
General
"Advance" has no rule book definition or significance. It was used by SP to designate the train that left ahead of the actual "Overnighter". The train was also called the "Zipper" but officially in the timetable the trains were the Coast Merchandise. There were four trains the Coast Merchandise East, Coast Merchandise West, and Advance copies of each. The Advance left about 4 PM while the actual Coast Merchandise was an after close of business train at about 7:30 PM. (These are approximate times not timetable times). The idea was to get business from San Francisco to LA and LA to San Francisco overnight and have it there at the start of business the next day (like Fed Ex).

Most accounts of the train operation refer to relatively few cars set out at SLO (or Santa Barbara or Watsonville Junction). Most were through cars.
Reference
There's substantial history available, in Vol. 4 on SP box cars, and in Trainline article, issue 43. PMT articles written in Trainline, issue 45, cover parts of this story.
Tony Thompson
                                                                         (*see Railroad Magazine, 1949-50).

#375      The StarPacer  (westward)
This was a TOFC train with auto loaders on Clejan flat cars.
Departed L.A. at 12:01 a.m. in 1958 and at 11:45 p.m. in 1962 heading to the Pacific Northwest (Portland, Seattle).
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 32

#376      The StarPacer  (eastward)
This was a TOFC train with auto loaders on Clejan flat cars.
Departed north out of Sacramento.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 28

#378      The Pacific Coast Expediter  (westward)	
This was a TOFC train.
Departed West Oakland to Portland.
Reference
                                                                          Trainline #108, pg. 18

#472
Bayshore-Redwood Jct-Newark-Niles Tower-Tracy

#533
    Alturas-Fernley on the Modoc Line.


#803
Los Angeles to Mojave, via Saugus freight train in 1953 and 1965.

#911     Golden State Manifest (GGM)   (westward)	
The daily symbol train GGM moved westward, Los Angeles to Oakland-San Francisco.
Under normal traffic conditions, the GGM operated from Santa Barbara as Train 911.

Schedule of the GGM reflects connection at San Jose with the “San Jose-Roseville Extra” (SJR), which in turn connects  with Shasta Route and Overland Route manifest trains, including the “Oakland-Portland Special” (OPS), destined Portland, and “Overland East” (OVE), destined Ogden. The Santa Maria Vegetable block perishable cars destined for Oakland were consolidated with the “Golden Gate Manifest” (GGM) as needed.
Tony Thompson

SP manifest freight schedule book No. 21, dated May 1, 1963 lists a GGM.

#912 (eastward)	
This scheduled freight in 1953, moved eastward and operated in late night or very early morning hours. This of course means that eastward scheduled freights had authority by class over westward scheduled freights.

#913  (westward)	
This scheduled freight in 1953, moved westward and was listed as a third-class train.

According to the 1950 Timetable:
    #913 train comes in to SLO from Guadelupe. TT at 9:00 pm
    #913 trains leaves SLO from S. Marg TT at 9:00 am
    #913 works all night dropping off and picking up. Any extra cars in yard sent if train is not full.

#914     Los Angeles Manifest (LAM) (eastward)	
San Francisco - Oakland - Los Angeles / Daily

Under normal traffic conditions, the LAM operated as Train 914.
# 914 was listed as a second-class train.
On the Coast Division, the WPB was consolidated with the “Los Angeles Manifest” (LAM) as needed.
Tony Thompson

#915     San Francisco Manifest (SFM)   (westward)	
The daily symbol train SFM moved westward, Los Angeles to Oakland-San Francisco.

It handled freight traffic (primarily reefer empties) for the Coast Route short of San Jose. It picked up and set out at Oxnard, Guadalupe, San Luis Obispo, and Salinas.
Under normal traffic conditions, the SFM operated as Train 915.
Trains 915 was a night-time train.
#915 was listed as a third-class train.

The blocks of cars called “Empty Auto Parts” (XAP). Los Angeles to Oakland, would find these blocks as part of the SFM. The lesser quantity of westward auto parts on the Coast, arriving via the Sunset Route, normally connected with the SFM.
Tony Thompson

#916     The “Smokey” 
The idea of a perishable train originating in SLO (or Guadalupe) was from later years. Evidence indicates that the “Smokey” originated in 1954 or 1955.
Tony Thompson

Perishables were handled on the "Smokey"(SMV and later GULAP) until 1983. Empty reefers spotted via the local from LA.
Wesley Fox

In later years, the Santa Maria Vegetable Block train was informally called “The Smokey” with timetable authority as number 916. 
This train usually departed San Luis Obispo as a caboose hop (locomotive and caboose only). Then the train went to Guadeloupe/Surf/SB to pickup loads. From there it went to Ventura/Oxnard and finished at the Taylor Yards. Departure times varied over the years, but were usually late evening or midnight.
Tony Thompson

#917  (westward)	
This scheduled freight in 1953, moved westward and was listed as a third-class train.

#919  (westward)	
This scheduled freight in 1953, operated westward in late night or very early morning hours.

#920  (westward)	
This scheduled freight in 1956, operated westward in late night or very early morning hours.
FM #4804 ran on 2-920 WJ to SLO on September 9, 1956.
FM #4803 and #4812 ran on 1-920 on September 13, 1956. 

#921 (eastward)	
This scheduled freight in 1956, operated eastward in late night or very early morning hours.
FM #4811 ran SLO to WJ on 1-921 on September 1, 1956.

#924 (eastward)	
This scheduled freight in 1953 moved eastward and was listed as a second-class train. This of course means that eastward scheduled freights had authority by class over westward scheduled freights.

#926     Coast Line Manifest (CLM)  (eastward)	
The daily symbol train CLM moved eastward.
Under normal traffic conditions, the CLM was operated as Train 926 eastward from San Luis Obispo as a night-time train.
#926 was listed as a second-class train. This of course means that eastward scheduled freights had authority by class over westward scheduled freights.

Schedule of the CLM reflects connection at Colton with Sunset Route manifest trains, including “Blue Streak Manifest” (BSM), destined St. Louis, and “Southeaster” (SE) for traffic destined beyond New Orleans. On the Coast Division, the WPB was consolidated with the “Coast Line Manifest” (CLM) as needed.
Tony Thompson

SP manifest freight schedule book No. 21, dated May 1, 1963 lists a "CLM" (Coast Line Manifest). 

Guadalupe Sub-division
In 1953, SP scheduled four freights in each direction on the Guadalupe Subdivision. Eastward were numbers 912, 914, 924 and 926, listed as second-class trains; westward were numbers 911, 913, 915 and 917, listed as third-class trains. This of course means that eastward scheduled freights had authority by class over westward scheduled freights. Incidentally, the same directional division of second and third classes was true over Cuesta (Santa Margarita Subdivision) but was not true over the remainder of the Coast Division.
Tony Thompson

Modeling Operations Using Freight Train Names
This list should give you an idea about the through freights that can go from staging to staging on your layout. This list doesn't include Coast Line locals freight. Add them to info about traffic/switching in order to have switching and keep operators busy building train and switching cars. Also know about the industries/structures/facilities in the are you model.


Specific Freight Trains by Train Name
The “Bay Meadows Flyer”
In 1956, extra 2489 west  was used on the “bay meadows flyer”.
#2489 was a P-10 and the last active skyline engine.

The Coast Mail, “Sad Sam”
The “Coast Mail” (officially named Passenger), was later known as “Sad Sam”. This train ran as 71 & 72, for most of it's existence. Note that both were referred to as Mail Train or Coast Mail.

Coast Peddler
The ECP/WCP East Coast Peddler/ West Coast Peddler did all the local work between Watsonville Jct. and San Luis and I will assume that that continued below San Luis to Santa Barbara. 

“Piggy Back”
In the early 50’s (1953), the first piggyback traffic on the Coast route seems to have been included in the “Overnight”. 
The Coast Merchandise #373-374 began handling piggyback flatcars (modified 53’ long flat cars) to accommodate truck trailers. Engine of choice was the GS- 4-8-4.

Sometime around 1955, the all piggyback “Advance Overnight” was introduced, using the schedule of the regular “Overnight”, but leaving an hour earlier. At about this same time the “Overnight” boxcars were repainted aluminum, reportedly to match the trailers. Silver C-40 cupola cabooses used mid to late 50’s.

In 1957 F-7’s replaced the steam locos. 		           (*see Trains 7/60)
Long piggyback flat cars (89’) arrived in 1959.

The “Smokey” 
The idea of a perishable train originating in SLO (or Guadalupe) was from later years. Evidence indicates that the “Smokey” originated in 1954 or 1955.
Tony Thompson

“The Zippers”    “Overnight” Service  Coast Manifest East or West  (CME or CMW)
On October 22, 1935, the first dedicated “Overnight” was introduced. “Overnight” merchandise trains, Nos. 373-374, was also called the Coast Manifest West (373) and the Coast Manifest East (373). The trains  had "Overnight" nicknames, but not formally so named by the railroad. There was the same service, just not in dedicated trains, for a few years before that. 
Tony Thompson


Specific Freight Trains by Train Symbol
For the last letters Y is a manifest train
For the last letters K is a Chemical / Hazardous train
For the last letters A is an Autos Train
Dennis Drury

Auto Parts West (APW)

“Oakland/City of Industry Trailers”  (BACIT)  (eastward, or toward LA)
The train that originated at SP's Oakland headed for City of Industry Yard in Los Angeles.

Bay Area- Los Angels Trailers  (BALAT)  (eastward)	
Oakland to LA with hot container and piggyback cars stopping only to change crews.

Blue Streak Merchandise  (BSM)

Advance Blue Streak Merchandise  (BSM)

Memphis Blue Streak Merchandise  (BSM)

“City of  Industry to the Bay Area Trailers”  (CIBAT)  (westward)
The train that originated at SP's City of Industry Yard in Los Angeles headed for Oakland. A typical train came with 34 cars, 5,580 tons, and 7,321 feet (including the power). The power was SP #9300 (SD45T-2), SP #9282 (SD45T-2), and SSW #8374 (SD40T-2). It traveled over the Coast Line with helper service at Cuesta.

“Coast Line Manifest”  (CLM)  (eastward)
San Francisco - Oakland - Tucson, via Palmdale Cutoff / Daily

Crown Zellerbach-Los Angeles  (CZLAT)  (eastward)
Operates out of Portland to L.A.   Paper products from the Pacific Northwest.

Dolores-Eugene Manifest  (DOEUM)  (westward)	
The train that originated at SP's Dolores (San Pedro) carried empties back to Eugene.

El Centro to Watsonville Junction  (ECWJQ) 
The train that originated at SP's El Centro to Watsonville Junction was a loaded beet train.

Gold Streak  (GSX)

Guadalupe to Los Angeles Perishable  (GULAP)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Guadelupe to Los Angeles. Perishables were handled until 1983.
	
Guadalupe to West Colton Manifest  (GUWCM)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Guadelupe to West Colton yard was a local. 

Houston to Roseville   (HORVY)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Houston to Roseville. For the last letters Y is a manifest train, 

Oakland Manifest  (ILCOA) 
The ILCOA was just pulled off the Coast and put onto the I-5 Line. 

“Los Angeles Auto Parts” (LAAP)
This was a blocks of cars normally operated daily, which might be separate trains if large enough. It traveled Oakland to Los Angeles.
Usual operation would find these blocks as part of the LAM.
Note: The Coast Division also handled considerable traffic in assembled automobiles, separately from the auto parts traffic.
Tony Thompson
	
Los Angeles to Bay Area Forwarder  (LABAF)   (westward, or toward SF)	
The train that originated at SP's Los Angeles LATC to Oakland / San Francisco carried Pigs / autos.

Los Angeles to Bay Area Forwarder  (LASAA)   (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Los Angeles to San Antonio

Missouri Pacific - Texas Pacific Special  (MTS)

New Orleans to Oakland  (NOOAK)  (Westward)	
The train that originated at SP's New Orleans to Oakland. For the last letters K is a Chemical / Hazardous train

North Coast Perishable  (NCP)

Oakland to Alton & Southern (OAASY)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Oakland to Alton and Southern in East St Louis. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

Oakland to Long Beach Trailers  (OALBT)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Oakland to Long Beach carried empty double stacks.
	
Oakland to West Colton Manifest  (OAWCY)  (eastward)
Oakland to LA and West Colton via Coast Line. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

Oakland Coast Manifest  (OCM)
Oakland to

Oxnard  to West Colton   (OXWCY) 
This 1984 period train operates from Oxnard to West Colton with runs are scheduled as required. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

Portland to Los Angeles Trailers (PTLAT)  (eastward)
This train ran in1989 with SP engines 9387, 8935, and 8530

Roseville - City of Industry Manifest  (RVCIY)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at Roseville. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

Seattle - City of Industry Manifest  (SECIY)  (eastward)
Seattle to Portland to LA via Coast Line. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

San Jose - ASY  (SJASY)  (eastward)
San Jose to Alton and Southern in East St Louis. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

West Colton-Guadalupe Manifest  (WCGUM)  (westward)	
The train that originated at SP's West Colton yard to Guadelupe was a local.

West Colton-Oakland Manifest  (WCOAY)  (westward)
This is the westbound counterpart to OAWCY. Handles most local set outs and pickups along the Coast Line. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,

West Colton to Oxnard  (WCOXY)  
This 1984 period train operates from West Colton to Oxnard and L.A.- Oxnard runs are scheduled as required. For the last letters Y is a manifest train,
	
Warm Springs-West Colton  (WSWCQ)  (eastward)	
The train that originated at SP's Warm Springs to West Colton yard was a mixed freight.
	
West Colton-Warm Springs  (WSWSQ)  (westward)	
The train that originated at SP's West Colton yard to Warm Springs was a bay area-mixed freight.

Valley Extra West  (VXW)

Anaheim Hauler  (WCANM)  (eastward)	
 The Job ran out of the City of Industry in the later 70's. Crews referred to it as the "Night Crawler" too when run at night. “AN is for Anaheim. The "M" is for manifest though.

“Empty Auto Parts” (XAP)
LAAP, the reverse counterpart, “Empty Auto Parts” (XAP). Los Angeles to Oakland, reflecting predominant movement on the Coast of auto parts loads eastward, which had arrived via the Overland Route. 
This was a blocks of cars normally operated daily, which might be separate trains if large enough. 
Usual operation would find these blocks as part of the SFM. The lesser quantity of westward auto parts on the Coast, arriving via the Sunset Route, normally connected with the SFM.
Tony Thompson


Turns, Locals and Haulers
Definition
The other extra trains were the turns, locals and haulers. These performed the on-line switching throughout the division, while the scheduled through freights did no such switching between terminals. 

Cars were not set out or picked up by symbol freight trains except in the yards at San Jose, Watsonville Junction, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara. The same was generally true of “drag” through freights, which on occasion might operate as extra trains. All local traffic between those yards was handled by local trains and haulers as needed.

Those locals ran with smaller engines (Mikados) when they had steam. They started putting those big Baldwins (AS-616) on the turns in the 50’s.

Turn
In SP parlance, a “turn” operated from a major yard to a point perhaps halfway to the next major yard and returned, with the return in many cases occurring the following day. The train would operate to that turnaround town and then return to the division point. SP terminology called the trains operating to midway between division points “turns”.” Thus south of San Luis, there was a Surf turn).

Railroaders appear to have a penchant for whimsy at times with official and unofficial train names, such as the Dole (Oregon) Turn being referred to as the "Fruit Loop" by crews. 
Thom Anderson

There was another pattern on most SP divisions, that a “turn” would be operated to switch most industries between a division point, and a town about half-way to the adjoining division point. The train would operate to that turnaround town and then return to the division point. 
Tony Thompson
Local
A “local” was a regular job operating over a shorter distance, usually on a single day. SP terminology called the trains operating to midway between division points “turns,” and trains operating over shorter territory were “locals.” Thus south of San Luis, there was a Guadalupe local.

   Those locals ran with Ten-wheelers, Moguls, or Consolidations.

The likely arrangement of how the local would pick up and set out cars for the branch would be for the local’s locomotive to do that. This would mean that the cars to be picked up would be already be sorted and made ready for pickup. But there is also another possibility, that a locomotive (or two) might be stationed at the branch, as SP did with some branch lines elsewhere on the system.
Tony Thompson
Hauler
The "hauler" trains took traffic from major yards to outlying yards where locals assigned there would do the final spotting.  The differentiation between a local and a hauler train was anything more than semantics.

A generally used slang expression is the term “hauler”. It doesn’t apply to any particular type of train. We have an "Anaheim Hauler,"
Joe Strapac

On the SP, “hauler” trains were used to service large shippers (like auto plants) or to handle large blocks of cars for pick up and delivery. Switching would usually be accomplished by the corresponding local, which would set out cars for the hauler to pick up, and would deliver cars brought by the hauler, to their local destinations. In effect, the “Smokey” was a hauler to Los Angeles in perishable season.
Tony Thompson  

The pickup locals in produce districts were called "haulers," for example in the Salinas Valley and in the Central Valley. In highly concentrated packing areas, a local switch crew would do the work, but in more dispersed areas, a "hauler" would operate. The term was used all over the system.
Tony Thompson 


Specific Turns, Locals and Haulers
Turn
Guadalupe - Gemco Turn
In the 80s-90s there was a turn that at times ran between Gemco and Guadalupe. This was normally a day job, usually on duty around 8am. 
Richard Barnes

Guadalupe - Oxnard Turn
In the 80s-90s there was a turn that at times ran between Oxnard and Guadalupe, other times between Gemco and Guadalupe. This was normally a day job, usually on duty around 8am. Seems they never could make up their mind as to the best way to handle the traffic between Santa Barbara and SLO.
Richard Barnes

King City - SLO Turn
On the Coast Division, the Santa Margarita Subdivision was served by a King City turn from San Luis Obispo. San Miguel, Paso Robles and Atascadero were normally served by the King City Turn. The tough job was the King City turn, because they had to go up Cuesta on the way out. Then on the way back, they would pick up at Paso Robles, Atascadero, various industries along the way. There might be a few cars of perishables, but usually not beets because they would go into the full beet trains. You might bring some beets back down and add them to the trains at San Luis.
Mac Gaddis

In the early 1950s, there were actually two out of SLO. The ones out of SLO worked up one day, back the next, with a layover in King City. Power was a 3200 (usually engine #3251), with 3600-3700 used on occasion. A 5200 Baldwin (AS-616) roadswitcher was assigned after steam, short time later GP9's. On duty around 5:00 to 6:00 am at both locations working 12 to 16 hours each way, both jobs making three round trips a week with one day, most likely either Sat. or Sun. off. 
Tom Dill

The King City [turn], in the 50’s was run with the #3251 or #3264. You needed a Mike to get up the mountain. And that job, you would go up there to the west leg of the wye at Camp San Luis to pick up ore. There was a mine dump there, you would pick up a gon or two of chrome ore, with maybe 8 or 10 inches of ore in the bottom, and it would be a full 50 tons, about the heaviest cars you would see. That ore usually went north, a pure black stuff. Then the King City job, on the way back, they would pick up at Paso Robles, Atascadero, various industries along the way. They might have some perishables, but sugar beets, not more than a few cars. Any more would go in the full beet trains.
Tony Thompson per Mac Gaddis

By the 1970's, it turned into the East Coast Peddler and West Coast Peddler between Watsonville Jct and SLO.
Peter Arnold
Reference
Rod Crossley’s Chasing the SP in California, 1953-1956 book has numerous views of the King City turns.

King City - Watsonville Junction Turn
On the Coast Division, the Salinas Subdivision was served by a King City turn from Watsonville Junction.

By the 1970's, it turned into the East Coast Peddler and West Coast Peddler between Watsonville Jct and SLO.
It was arrive back in WJct and continue on as one of the SV Blocks to RV.
Wesley Fox

Roseville - Stockton Turn
Around 1971.

SLO - Oxnard Turn
Around 1984, there was a Oxnard-SLO Turn each way and finally before the Coast closed to through traffic, the "GUM(WCGUM/GUWCM train). In 1984 the SLO - Oxnard Local  was powered by several SD-39’s (5300 series).

Surf - Santa Barbara Turn
In late steam and early diesel days, there was a Surf Turn out of Santa Barbara. They usually needed the full hours under the law (or the crews made sure they did). In John Signor's Coast Line book there is a story about this.
Tony Thompson

Surf - SLO Turn
In late steam and early diesel days, there was a Surf Turn out of SLO. They usually needed the full hours under the law (or the crews made sure they did). In John Signor's Coast Line book there is a story about this. The Surf turn would only have picked up and set out cars beyond Guadalupe. In the 1950s, it was run from San Luis Obispo as a turn to Surf, combined with a separate run to Lompoc.
Tony Thompson 
Reference
Rod Crossley’s Chasing the SP in California, 1953-1956 book has numerous views of the Surf turns.  

Surf - White Hills Branch Turn
In the 50’s, this turn sometimes would meet the Santa Barbara Turn, but usually not.

In the 1970’s, the Surf Turn would bring cars to Surf Station and the Lompoc Local would come light engines and caboose from Guadalupe pick up cars at Surf and head to Lompoc. Once in Lompoc they would leave the Inbound train pick up the Outbound cars and head back out to Surf where they would leave their train and return to Guadalupe Cab-Hop. 
Nils Gustavson

In the 1984 period, two SW1500’s or GPE’s worked the Lompoc & White Hills branch.


Watsonville - Welby Turn
For a time around 1978-81 there was also a Welby Turn out of WJ during the summer harvest season.
Mike

Local
Ferrum Local
The Kaiser Ore Train ran empties east to Ferrum empty and return the 100 car train full of ore from the Kaiser Eagle Mountain mine near Desert Center.

Goleta Local
From Santa Barbara, a Goleta local served the extensive packing sheds west of Santa Barbara.

Guadeloupe Local
From San Luis Obispo, a Guadalupe local served industries between San Luis Obispo and Guadalupe. In the early 1950s, two Guadalupe locals operated each day in summer and fall. It ran with the tender first.

The local would go down to Guadalupe and come back, and do a lot of switching, perishables, maybe beets, and sometimes interchange with the Santa Maria Valley. Sometimes they would bring perishables back to SLO, or if it was heavy, they would spot them for a through train, like the “Watsonville Perishable Block” (WPB). That was a hot train. It would arrive in SLO with 60 or 70 cars, they would add to it, and it would fill out in Guadalupe to a full train, then run through to LA. Parts of it would go east from there. When it was a big train like that, it ran around three in the afternoon.” [about the scheduled departure of Train 916].
Mac Gaddis

By 1986, the Guadalupe Switcher was doing the Lompoc/White Hills work.
Wesley Fox

When the SP was in operation the "Lompoc Switcher" and "Guadalupe Switcher" were two different Jobs both working out of Guadalupe. L430 Guadalupe Switcher -Serviced Guadalupe, SMVRR, and everything North to San Luis Obispo.
Nils Gustavson
1950‘s Harvest Season
In busy harvest seasons, there were two Guadalupe locals a day, one departing San Luis at mid-morning and one at mid-evening. These would return to San Luis, respectively, in the early evening, and about dawn. The bulk of the work of the local train(s) would be perishables, both setting out empties and picking up loads, and since the predominant crop in the area is vegetables, harvesting spreads over a long season.
1990’s
Most of the time the Guadalupe local left the cars on one leg of the wye track at Surf. The White Hills local came down and spotted them in Lompoc and at the mill in the White Hills. The crew shanty and restroom is at the Lompoc Station grounds.
Mike Curran
Reference
Pages 44 of Dallas Gilbertson’s California Rails 1950s  book include photos of local trains south of San Luis Obispo. It shows the Guadalupe local returning to San Luis Obispo with ten reefers in tow. The location is Callender in 1954. 

Another example of a local near Guadalupe is included in the Coast Line Pictorial showing a Baldwin pulling One FGEX car at the front of the string, followed by a BREX car, while the third car ahead of the caboose (barely visible at the edge of the image) is an ART car. The other six reefers are PFE.

Rod Crossley’s Chasing the SP in California, 1953-1956 book has numerous views of the Guadalupe local.

Lompoc Local
A local freight that worked the Johns Manville plant at White Hills and delivered the days loading of diatomaceous earth, vegetables grown in the valley and sugar beets to to the Betteravia sugar mill for pick up at Surf. The local would pickup empties in Surf and return to Lompoc. The S.B. Local would change engines with the Lompoc local every 2nd and 3rd day in order to get a general servicing at the roundhouse.

The diatomaceous earth operation had their first mill along the tracks where the baseball field is at the east end of what was once the SP yard [It is now down to two tracks.] The line east serviced Grefco which processed diatomaceous earth. The mine up San Miguelito Canyon was Celite, John-Mansville, Alleghany Industries and now World Minerals. 

The lumber yard was just east of V Street on the north side of Laurel. There was a spur into the yard. There was also a spur into the Lompoc Bean Warehouse just east of the lumber yard. The bean facility is still there but the only thing left of the spur is evidence of a switch in the middle of Laurel St.             http://www.lompocbeans.com/
1950’s
Shortly after the end of steam a Baldwin diesel switcher that was stationed there. It was in the 5200 number series. Some of the neighbors complained as the engine was left idling at night. At the time there was plenty of switching to be done. A Johns - Manville official stated that the Lompoc branch created more traffic than another Coast Line Branch. The branch was extended east to serve a diatomaceous earth plant. Earlier there were the bean warehouses, lumber yard, packing sheds and beet dump to switch.

In the 50’s, the  Lompoc Local worked six days a week out of Santa Barbara. Besides switching at Lompoc, the job handled any switching chores on the way there. In those SP days, the Lompoc Switcher or Local would spend 3 to 5 hours switching the whole plant. 
Nils Gustavson

The January 1956 SP Bulletin had an article about the Lompoc local. Photocopies of the article could probably be obtained by contacting the Calif. State Railroad Museum Library (the article is on pages 28-33).
John Sweetser
1970’s
The power thru the 70's was usually a SW1500, GP9, occasionally a SD7or SD9, and a caboose would be used. At that time the Surf Turn would bring cars to Surf Station and the Lompoc Local would come light engines and caboose from Guadalupe pick up cars at Surf and head to Lompoc. Once in Lompoc they would leave the Inbound train pick up the Outbound cars and head back out to Surf where they would leave their train and return to Guadalupe Cab-Hop. 
Nils Gustavson
1980’s
Since 1981, in Lompoc, no locomotives were assigned here on a permanent basis. After the "Lompoc Switcher"was terminated, the Lompoc Local took over all the switching in Lompoc and you would see mostly SD9's, and occasionally an SD39 up until 1991.
Nils Gustavson

By 1986, the Guadalupe Switcher was doing the Lompoc/White Hills work.
Wesley Fox
1990’s
In 1991, SD9E #4347 derailed going up the White Hills Branch. After that the Branch was restricted to four axle power "only" usually GP35's and GP38-2's occasionally a GP9 or a pair of SW1500's could be found in use on the Local.
Nils Gustavson

Lompoc also had (1or 2) GE B23-7's,(1) SSW B40-8,(1) DRGW GP30,(3) GP60's,GP40P-2 3197, for power on the Lompoc Local in the 90's and last but not least SD40M-2 8574 (The very last SP six axle unit to come on to the Lompoc Branch) with a Work Train to be loaded with track equipment. 

When the SP was in operation the "Lompoc Switcher" and "Guadalupe Switcher" were two different Jobs both working out of Guadalupe. L431 Lompoc Switcher (Aka "Lompoc Flyer")-Serviced all of VAFB,and Lompoc Branch and on rare occasions the La Patera Lumber Spur. 

Unfortunately the "Lompoc Switcher" was eventually eliminated after the UP take over, thus leaving only the Guadalupe Switcher to service everything between San Luis Obispo and Surf/Lompoc. The Celite Diatomacious Earth plant has obtained a leased SW1500 to be used for inter-plant switching which is operated by a SMVRR Crew.
Nils Gustavson
Reference
There are several maps of Lompoc including some copies from the California State RR museum showing some of the earlier industries. A great source of information is the Lompoc Valley Historical Society.

                                                                        SP Bulletin, January 1956

Santa Barbara Local
It would deliver water cars to Pt. Conception and Arlight for use by railroad employees and Coast Guard personnel at the lighthouses. It also did the local work between Santa Barbara and Surf. It would carry l.c.l. freight for Goleta, Gaviota,  Pt. Conception, Surf and Lompoc. The S.B. Local would change engines with the Lompoc local every 2nd and 3rd day in order to get a general servicing at the roundhouse. 

Helpers at S.B. went over Montalvo Pass. 

Local freights turns worked out of S.B. west to Surf on the Coast Div. and east to Oxnard on the Los Angeles Div. Empties left S.B. to the lemon packing plants in Montecito. Loads were picked up on the return trip and taken to S.B. There they were switched into through freights in either direction depending on direction. Oil cars came from Summerland where there are oil wells. Carpenteria received mainly reefers for its two citrus packing houses. Cars for Oxnard were off the Coast Div., set off at S.B., and intended for way stations as far as Fillmore via the Santa Paula local. 

Santa Barbara - Lompoc Local
The S.B.-Lompoc Local brought water to Surf. 

SLO - Santa Barbara Local
In the 70s and early eighties, it was handled by the ECP/WCP (East/West Peddler out of WJ and LA). 

Surf Local
The Surf turn performed the same kind of work westward on the Coast Div.; at Goleta, La Patera, Ellwood, Naples, Gaviota, Sudden and Conception through to its destination. It was sometimes used to rotate the Lompoc branch engine, always a Consolidation because of the heavy grades leading to White Hills.
1980‘s & 1990’s
In the late 1980's and early 1990's, the Surf Local was run from Guadalupe. It serviced Lompoc and Vandenberg AFB. It was normally EMD locomotives assigned to Guadalupe. By 1986, the Guadalupe Switcher was doing the Lompoc/White Hills work.
Wesley Fox

If it had a helium car on it, this would go to Vandenberg as well as some of the the box cars. Missiles and parts of rockets were also delivered to Vandenberg via rail. Box Cars and Hoppers were also delivered to Lompoc and normally weren't left at Surf because there were no engines in Lompoc at that time. They would go to White Hills and the local would switch out the cars as required and make up the train to return to Guadalupe. At that time, the train would go locomotive first up the hill until the accident of losing some of the cars and the caboose damaging the equipment and houses when it derailed. 

In the 90's the track ran all the way to the warehouse on the east end of town where some box cars and Hoppers also could be found. This extension is now gone and the tracks in the abandoned yard have also been removed except for two of them. You could see the engines or a train parked on the street and the crew was either at an eatery or at the donut shop prior to their returning to Guadalupe. Also it is not unusual to see a set of engines parked in the old yard area to be used in the next couple of days to retrieve cars from White Hills and return to Guadalupe. 
Jim Scott

Reference
                                                                                        Southern Pacific's Coast Line, pg. 261
There are several maps of Lompoc including some copies from the California State RR museum showing some of the earlier industries. A great source of information is the Lompoc Valley Historical Society.            

                                              
Hauler
Anaheim Hauler  (WCANM)	
The Job ran out of the City of Industry in the later 70's. Crews referred to it as the "Night Crawler" too when run at night. “AN is for Anaheim. The "M"is  for manifest though.

The Marne Hauler
This originated from Taylor, setting out the Anaheim cars at City of Industry and returning with Taylor cars (Marne siding is basically the east end of the City of Industry siding {double Xover}.

The Walnut Hauler
This originated from Taylor, setting out the Anaheim cars at City of Industry and returning with Taylor cars (Walnut siding is the next siding east of Marne on the east end of the City of Industry siding {double Xover}. 

Watsonville - Salinas Hauler
This ran on the Coast Line. During 1948 to 1952, these were naturally reefers in most cases, but they also handled trains of loaded and empty cars of sugar beets destined to and from Spreckels. 76%, were PFE cars. Much more surprising was that 122 cars, or 11%, were ART cars.
Tony Thompson


Special Trains
Auto Parts Trains
There wasn’t any special trains, but the cars would be in the manifest trains. You can’t go by train numbers, because they just used the next number in the timetable when a [particular symbol] train was ready to go. Some days it would have one number, the next day maybe it was a little later, got a different number. They ran second sections sometimes when we had a lot moving.
Tony Thompson per Mac Gaddis

Coke Trains
There is also little or no mention of the unit Coke trains out of Callendar.
Jon C.

The “Beet Train”
The “Beet Train” ran the Coast. It ran as #924. It started in May each year. It ran South to the Speckles Sugar Factory in Betteravia. When running westbound from S.B. to Surf, the train would get a helper from SLO (rescue mission).
The helper would meet the train at Surf. Once the “Beet Train”  crew waited at Honda 4 hours for a rescue.
In the 30’s and 40’s Consolidations pulled sugar beet trains.

Diatomaceous Earth Train
Diatomaceous earth from Manville plant was used for toothpaste, vitamins, water filters and as thickener for paint. 
The Manville plant is in Lompoc off Lompoc branch.
S.P. had normal 20 car consists. When moving white rock (gypsum) for John-Mansville, 18-22 cars were a common consist.

Fire Trains
Concerning the Cuesta tunnels, they had water cars up there for protection. They had them there for years and years, in case of fires. It was four or five cars, usually two with platforms on the top and a couple just with water inside. Some were on each side of the summit. 
Mac Gaddis

Holiday Mail & Express Train
Dec. 7, 1955                                                                            (See Trainline #86  T86/14)

Jail Train
During the war a jail car was added to a consist of the Mail Train to transport military prisoners from Lompoc Jail, a maximum security prison run by the Army. It used prison cars with barred windows.

Work Trains
There was a siding just above the summit tunnel, between there and Cuesta siding, where there were work cars. They worked on those tunnels for just years. They dug out almost six feet of the tunnel tops, with 3-foot gauge cars to pull out the dirt. They could only do a little work at a time, because the line was kept open all through the project.
Mac Gaddis

http://www.sptco.tnorr.comhttp://www.sptco.tnorr.comhttp://www.thecoachyard.comhttp://www.lompocbeans.com/shapeimage_2_link_0shapeimage_2_link_1shapeimage_2_link_2shapeimage_2_link_3
Southern Pacific Lines
S.P. Coast Line Freight Trains
General Info
Freight Trains by Number Freight Trains by Name
The Coast Mail
Coast Peddler
“Piggy Back”
The “Smokey”
The “Zippers”
Freight Trains by Symbol

Turns, Locals and Haulers

Specific Turns, Locals &  
     Haulers
SLO, S.B., Surf & Lompoc Locals

Special  Trains
Special Trains
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Photo courtesy of Brian Moore