Union Pacific
Ivanpah, California
April 12, 1987

Heading south on the Union Pacific's former Los Angeles & Salt Lake presents a series of obstacles to the unwary train. After a high-speed virtually tangent run to Arden, there follows a steep and winding climb until leveling out at Erie Siding; then the long slog up Cima Hill begins. Partway to the summit, after crossing the Nevada/California border shortly after Jean, one passes through a location with the historic name of Ivanpah, California.

This is actually the second Ivanpah, and was originally called Leastalk. The first Ivanpah was located on the other side of the Ivanpah Valley to the west and was a silver mining town founded in 1869 and defunct by 1890.

This view looks north (downgrade) along the LA&SL at (new) Ivanpah from the Ivanpah Road grade crossing. At one time the LA&SL was crossed here at grade by the California Eastern Railway, which ran from (old) Ivanpah to Barnwell, where it connected with the Nevada Southern to provide a through route to Goffs, California on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe main line. Both roads eventually became part of the Santa Fe's California, Arizona & Santa Fe Railway which was abandoned in 1921. Today no trace of the crossing at Ivanpah remains.

This page posted 1/1/2019. Text and photo ©2019 Lamont Downs.