Sunday, December 13, 2015

Plumas County, California Bridges, Union Pacific Railroad Bridges

November 2015 (39.8080, -120.4678) Union Pacific Railroad Bridges
The Union Pacific Railroad follows the Middle Fork of the Feather River east from Blairsden, across the Clio Trestle, through the Portola Railroad Depot, and into Reno, Nevada. The photo above shows the tracks crossing State Route 89 in Blairsden. The Blairsden Underpass (09 0031) is a single span through plate girder bridge on concrete abutments that was built in 1908. These through girder bridges are a favorite choice of the railroad since the girders are high enough to avoid vertical clearance problems (15 ft 3 inches) on the roadway below.
Continuing east of Blairsden the tracks cross over Willow Creek before going under North Gulling Street on the Portola Overhead (09 0100) (see photo below). Underpasses allow roads to go 'under' railroads and overheads allow roads to go 'over' railroads in Caltrans' parlance (railways probably have their own nomenclature).

The Portola Overhead is a 3 span steel girder bridge that was built in 1954. Note the well cars, with a well or depression that can carry double stacked shipping containers closer to the rails than the traditional flat car so they can go under bridges. Whoever invented shipping containers revolutionized commerce. The same container can be carried on a truck, a ship, or a train and it can be tracked with GPS software whether it's moving or stacked in a port.
Creative Commons License
Plumas County, California Bridges, Union Pacific Railroad Bridges by Mark Yashinsky is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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