Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont

by Joe Thompson

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Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont


March, 2003

Ardenwood Historic Farm, just across the Dumbarton Bridge in Fremont, is operated by the East Bay Regional Park District. Forty-Niner George Washington Patterson's farm and home are preserved to show what life was like on a prosperous Nineteenth Century farm.

One of the features of the farm is a horse-drawn railroad, operated by the Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources as a tribute to the South Pacific Coast's horse operated Centerville branch.

The railroad was not operating when I visited in March, 2003, but I was able to inspect the South Pacific Coast's Ardenwood depot, which serves as the park entrance, and the nearby rail yard. I saw two small internal combustion locomotives, freight cars labelled SP, SPC, NPC, North Shore, and West Side Lumber, and flat cars with benches for riders. One car was covered with a tarp.

The tracks makes a wide sweep around the edge of a meadow, then disappears into a wooded area. There was a tiny yard at the other terminal. The track continued on into an area that was closed to the public.

The Patterson house is a beautiful Queen Anne. I was lucky to go in March because there were many new born animals, lambs, kids, and chicks.

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March, 2004

I paid a brief visit in March, 2004. Trains were not running, but I spent a pleasant afternoon looking at the equipment and visiting the animals.
equipment Railroad equipment preserved at Ardenwood. March, 2004.
switch stand A switch stand at Deer Park. March, 2004.

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September, 2005

Antelope and Western 1 Antelope and Western 1 at Ardenwood Station. September, 2005.

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the Fifth Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend. It was well worth a visit.
on the train Antelope and Western 1 backs onto the train at Deer Park. September, 2005.
switching Antelope and Western 1 backs away after uncoupling from the train at Deer Park. September, 2005.
switching Antelope and Western 1 backs towards the train at Deer Park. September, 2005.

This year's visiting steam locomotive was an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, Antelope and Western 1. A volunteer who worked on the restoration mentioned that this was the first time the locomotive had run in revenue service since the 1950's. They had finished the tender just that week. The locomotive pulled two flatcars from Ardenwood Station to Deer Park and back. At each terminal, the locomotive uncoupled and ran around the train.
horse tram Jiggs pulls the horse-drawn car into Deer Park. September, 2005.

In an unusual move, horse train service ran from Deer Park out to North Park, on a stretch of track that is not used in normal operation. On Saturday, the volunteers tried to figure out how best to share the Deer Park terminal. One volunteer mentioned that the horses are always skittish the first day the steam locomotives operate, but settle down for the rest of the weekend. We had a nice ride behind Jiggs. On the way back, a mixed signal caused the steam train and Jiggs to arrive at the same time. They uncoupled Jiggs, and we left the car by a ladder. That was cool.
horsecar Jiggs pulls the horse-drawn car towards North Park. September, 2005.

The Bay Area Garden Railways Association had two large layouts near the hay barn.
traction engine The Daniel Best steam tractor rolls around a meadow. September, 2005.

I enjoyed riding on a wagon behind the Oakland Museum's 100-year-old Daniel Best steam tractor. Daniel Best Steam Traction Company was located in San Leandro, and was a predecessor of Caterpillar. The 100 horsepower tractor weighs 18 tons, 600 pounds stands 17 feet eight inches tall, and has eight foot driving wheels. I would like to have seen it cruising down 580 from Oakland at 3.5 mph .

We also enjoyed seeing the day-old calf, Louise, and the other farm animals.

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March, 2006

We paid a brief visit in March, 2006. There were lots of young lambs and goats.
SPCRR 1 SPCRR 1, a 1928 Plymouth gasoline locomotive, prepares to pull a members' day train. March, 2006.
Station Sign Ardenwood Station sign. The station serves as the park entrance. March, 2006.
Sheep A ewe and the new black sheep of the family. March, 2006.

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September, 2006

pumpkin patch Antelope and Western 1 pulls a train along the pumpkin patch. September, 2006.

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the Sixth Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend. We had fun.
on the train Happy passengers and crew on the first train of the day. September, 2006.
at the station Antelope and Western 1 prepares to couple onto the train at Ardenwood Station. September, 2006.

Antelope and Western 1, an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, was the visiting steam locomotive for the second straight year. The locomotive pulled two flatcars and an ore car from Ardenwood Station to Deer Park and back. At each terminal, the locomotive uncoupled and ran around the train. The locomotive ran tender-first from Ardenwood to Deer Park.
at the station 2 Antelope and Western 1 rolls towards the waiting train at Ardenwood Station. It will pull out of the station tender-first. September, 2006.
handcar Many people enjoyed handcar rides. September, 2006.
schedule The schedule board at Ardenwood Station. September, 2006.

The SPCCR was collecting donations towards a carhouse.
horse car broadside This 1887 Carter-built horse car ran for the Oakland Railroad and then a line in Berkeley. The SPCRR hopes to build new running gear to replace the rubber tires. September, 2006.
horse car end view An end view of the horse car. September, 2006.
horse tram Jiggs the horse pulls the horse-drawn car into Deer Park. September, 2006.

Horse train service again ran from Deer Park out to North Park. The tree that the horses used to rest under between runs had been cut down, so the volunteers were collecting funds to build a shelter.
horse tram at Deer Park Jiggs the horse gets unhitched after pulling the horse-drawn car into Deer Park. September, 2006.
horse car ladder The loading arrangements for the horse-drawn car at North Park. Note the fire extinguisher, there in case the horse bursts into flames ;0). September, 2006.
North Shore The North Shore logo on the horse-drawn car. North Shore was a predecessor of the Northwestern Pacific. September, 2006.
cable car Powell Street cable car 26 runs by the airport on the Bay Area Garden Railways Association's G-gauge layout. September, 2006.

The Bay Area Garden Railways Association had two large layouts near the hay barn. I particularly enjoyed the cable car.

A jazz band played on the porch of the Granary.
Pigs Pigs is pigs, as Mike Flannery said. This pair was having a grand time. September, 2006.

We enjoyed visiting the farm animals. A volunteer had a goat on a leash. The sheep had been trimmed recently.

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September, 2007

Ardenwood sign The sign on Ardenwood Station proclaims the Washington Township Railroad Fair 2007. September, 2007.

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the Seventh Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend. It was very hot, but we had fun.
depot Ardenwood Station serves as the park entrance. September, 2007.
getting off the train Passengers leave the train at Ardenwood Station, passing Antelope and Western 1. September, 2007.

Antelope and Western 1, an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, was the visiting steam locomotive for the third straight year. The locomotive pulled two flatcars and an ore car from Ardenwood Station to Deer Park and back. At each terminal, the locomotive uncoupled and ran around the train. The locomotive ran tender-first from Ardenwood to Deer Park.

Antelope and Western 1 arrives at Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

Antelope and Western 1 arrives at Deer Park Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

Antelope and Western 1 runs around the train at Deer Park Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
Jiggs Jiggs waits in the shade for his next trip with the horse car. September, 2007.

Horse train service again ran from Deer Park out to North Park. The volunteer driver talked about plans to build a carhouse at the end of the line.

Jiggs pulls horse-drawn car North Shore 1725 towards Deer Park Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
Two pigs Two pigs were having a wild frolic in their muddy pen. A good way to beat the heat. September, 2007.

We enjoyed visiting the farm animals.
Cable Car 23 Cable car 23 on the garden-scale layout. Note the sign advertising the 22nd Annual National Garden Railway Convention. September, 2007.

The Bay Area Garden Railways Association had two large layouts near the hay barn. Again this year I particularly enjoyed the cable car and the geared locomotives.
sign I liked this sign by the field. September, 2007.


August, 2008

Number 4 at Ardenwood The Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 at Ardenwood Station. August, 2008.

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the Eighth Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend. It was not as hot as last year.
Number 4 The boiler and domes of Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4. August, 2008.

The visiting steam locomotive this year was Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4, an 0-4-2T built by Baldwin in 1891 for the Kaiwiki Sugar Co. in Ookala, Hawaii. It is now privately owned in Coto de Caza, California. The locomotive pulled two flatcars, a picnic car, and an ore car from Ardenwood Station to Deer Park and back. I noticed the picnic car and wondered why it was not being used for horse-drawn train rides. I was sad to read in the program that horse-drawn train rides "will not be offered this year due to the loss of Tucker, one of our two wonderful Belgian draft horses. Jiggs, his partner, is in mourning and not up to giving rides this Railfair, but will be in attendance and receiving visitors."
Taking water Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 takes water at Ardenwood Station. August, 2008.

This year, the locomotive ran push-pull, rather than uncoupling and running around the train. The locomotive pushed tender-first from Ardenwood to Deer Park.

Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 arrives at Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
Picnic car Passengers wait on the picnic car, which will be at the head of the train when it leaves Ardenwood Station. August, 2008.

Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 pushes the train out of Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

We enjoyed visiting the farm animals and the model train layouts. This year the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association had a collection of internal combustion engines running by the barn.

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March, 2009

We paid a brief visit in March, 2009. There were several newborn lambs.

link and pin Link and pin couplers between two cars.

lambs These were two of the cutest lambs.

sign A partially obscured sign warns us to watch out for something. We should have gone closer to check.

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September, 2009

SPCRR The Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources operates the railroad at Ardenwood Farm. September, 2009.
Number 4 The conductor calls "All Aboard" Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 waits to push the first train of the day out of Ardenwood Station. September, 2009.

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the Ninth Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend. The weather was on the cool side. For the first time ever, there were two guest steam locomotives. For the second straight year, they had Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4, Deanna, an 0-4-2T built by Baldwin in 1891 for the Kaiwiki Sugar Co. in Ookala, HI. It is now privately owned in Coto de Caza, CA. The other locomotive was Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0T.
Number 4 cab A look into the cab of Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 after it backed out of Deer Park Station, showing the fireman and the backhead. September, 2009.

Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 backs out of Deer Park Station to clear the way for the other train, pushed by Ann Marie. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

There were some difficulties in figuring out operating procedures. We got aboard ahead of #4, pushing the regular train and the picnic car, for its first run. When we arrived at Deer Park, most of the passengers got off, so we moved up near the front of the train, where we could see into the cab. After offloading, the train backed through the station, so the other train could pull in. We waited while it came from Ardenwood, then let off its passengers, then left. We pulled back in. The crew had a vigorous discussion about better ways to do it. They decided that two trains were running more slowly than one, and that they would have to have one train pull around.

A view of the cab as Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 pulls its train from Deer Park to Ardenwood Station. The crew checks to make sure the other train has cleared Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
Station sign The sign board at Ardenwood Station mentions the two operating steam locomotives. September, 2009.

Both locomotive rans push-pull, rather than uncoupling and running around the train. Each locomotive pushed tender-first from Ardenwood to Deer Park.
Line When we got back Ardenwood Station from the first run, we found a long line. Ann Marie percolates in the background, waiting to push her train, combination car Southern Pacific 1010. September, 2009.

Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 arrives at Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
Ann Marie Ann Marie, the 1890 Porter 0-4-0T, waits at Ardenwood yard for her next trip to Deer Park. September, 2009.
Ann Marie builder plate Ann Marie's Porter builder's plate. September, 2009.

Ann Marie pulls through Ardenwood Station to clear the way for the train pulled by Deanna. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

We had lunch then walked around and looked at the model train exhibits and the farm animals. Sheep, goats, rabbits, pigs, and chickens.
cow A cow relaxes. September, 2009.
sheep A sheep enoys the cool weather. September, 2009.
hog A hog stretches out in the shade. I smelled him before I saw him. September, 2009.
Deer Park The platform at Deer Park Station. September, 2009.

Back at Deer Park, we watched the train pulled by #4 pull in, offload, then pull through the station. As the other train, pushed by the Porter, arrived, #4 pulled around on the passing track and headed back to Ardenwood. We got on 1882 Southern Pacific combination car 1010 behind the Porter, and it pulled through the station and we waited until the other train went to Ardenwood and came back. We pulled around and headed back. Two volunteers on the car told lots of stories about local history.
#4 at Deer Park Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 waits to unload at Deer Park Station. September, 2009.
#4 in the hole Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 has backed out of Deer Park Station to clear the way for the next train. September, 2009.

At Deer Park, Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 pulls its train into the passing track as Ann Marie pushes her single coach into the station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)
#4 leaves Deer Park Sandstone Crag Loop Line #4 leaves the passing track at Deer Park Station. September, 2009.
Ann Marie cab Looking from the freight section of SP 1011 into the cab of Ann Marie at Deer Park Station. Note the galvanized bucket of coal. September, 2009.
Ann Marie Ann Marie waits as her train loads at Ardenwood Station. September, 2009.
Ann Marie and train Ann Marie and her train, SP 1011, have pulled forward at Ardenwood Station to clear the way for the other train. September, 2009.

There were no horse-drawn train rides this year. The new horse is still in training, and Jiggs can't do it all by himself.
NWP 5591 Northwestern Pacific caboose 5591, probably built by the North Pacific Coast in the 1890s. September, 2009.
NWP herald The Northwestern Pacific herald, my favorite, on caboose 5591. September, 2009.

There were nice model train layouts and the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association had a collection of internal combustion engines running by the barn.
hand car A sign advertises hand car rides. September, 2009.
Clouds Dramatic clouds over the fields. September, 2009.

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March, 2010

We paid a brief visit in March, 2010. There were newborn lambs and baby goats on the way.

locomotive SPCRR 1, a 1928 Plymouth gasoline locomotive, has its hoods up for servicing.

lamb A two-week old lamb.

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September, 2010

Because of family illness, we could not go to Ardenwood Farm for the Tenth Annual Washington Township Railroad Fair over Labor Day weekend.
Here is the flier for the event.

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September, 2011

A&W Antelope and Western 1 has pulled around its train at Ardenwood Station and is pulling in to couple up for a trip back to Deer Park Station. September, 2011.

Ardenwood Historic Farm, just across the Dumbarton Bridge in Fremont, is operated by the East Bay Regional Park District. Forty-Niner George Washington Patterson's farm and home are preserved to show what life was like on a prosperous Nineteenth Century farm.

One of the features of the farm is a horse-drawn railroad, operated by the Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources as a tribute to the South Pacific Coast's horse operated Centerville branch.

Antelope and Western 1 backs onto her train at Deer Park Station. When Ann Marie arrives, A&W 1 pulls her train to Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

I took the family to Ardenwood Farm for the 11th annual Labor Day Railfair at Ardenwood Farm. It was cold and overcast when we got there at 10am, but the sky gradually cleared. There were no horse-powered train rides this year, but two steam locomotives operated, Antelope and Western 1, an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, which had visited from 2005-2008, and Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter which was there for the third straight year. A&W 1 pulled a three car train: a flat, the covered car usually pulled by horses, and another flat. Ann Marie pulled 1010, an 1882 combination car that last ran on the Southern Pacific narrow gauge.
Ann Marie Ann Marie pulls her train through Ardenwood Station and into the yard to make way for the first train of the day. Two kids watch expectantly as guests wait in line to buy admission tickets. September, 2011.

Ann Marie pushes her train out of Ardenwood Station. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

While A&W 1's train loaded at Ardenwood Station, Ann Marie would arrive from Deer Park and pull its train past on another track and into the yard behind. After A&W 1 left, Ann Marie would push her train into the station. When A&W 1 arrived at Deer Park, she would run around to the front of train. When Ann Marie arrived, she would run around on the other track and A&W 1 would leave. Back at Ardenwood Station, A&W 1 would pull back around to the front of the train. So A&W 1 always ran around, while Ann Marie would push and pull.
Ardenwood yard Looking back from our seats at the rear of A&W 1's train at the Ardenwood yard. Ann Marie smokes quietly behind her train, waiting to push into the station. September, 2011.
Ardenwood station Looking back from our seats at the rear of A&W 1's train at Ardenwood station and the yard beyond. September, 2011.
riders The first train of the day, behind A&W 1, carried a good crowd to Deer Park Station. September, 2011.
tangent A&W 1 was able to pick up some speed on this long straight stretch between rows of eucalyptus trees. September, 2011.
A&W 1 Antelope and Western 1 runs around its train at Deer Park Station to prepare for the trip back to Ardenwood Station. September, 2011.
A&W 1 switching Antelope and Western 1 gets ready to back through the switch at Deer Park Station to prepare for the trip back to Ardenwood Station. Ann Marie waits patiently in the background. She will run her train around on the same track that A&W 1 used to run around its train. September, 2011.

Ann Marie arrives at Deer Park Station as Antelope and Western 1 pulls out with her train. (Adobe Flash is required. Some browsers will require two clicks to start the video.)

The line at Ardenwood Station kept getting longer and longer during the day. Kids were having a great time.
line By the time we got back to Ardenwood Station, there was a long line waiting for a ride. September, 2011.
A&W 1 leaving Ardenwood Antelope and Western 1 pulls its train out of Ardenwood Station towards Deer Park Station. September, 2011.

There was a big Garden Scale display, and a modular N-Scale display. A steam calliope played in the gazebo. I didn't see the Oakland horse car, which was supposed to be on display.
cable car A static diorama at the Garden Scale layout has a California Street cable car on a hill next to some nice Victorians made from cereal boxes. September, 2011.

We had a picnic by the farmyard. We went and saw the goats, sheep and fowl.
A&W 1 at Deer Park Antelope and Western 1 has arrived at Deer Park Station with a good load of passengers. September, 2011.

We continued on towards Deer Park Station, where A&W 1 had just arrived with its train.
A&W 1 Uncoupled from its train, Antelope and Western 1 waits for a switch to be thrown. September, 2011.
A&W 1 takes the switch A&W 1 takes the switch to run around its train on the near track. September, 2011.
Ann Marie waits Ann Marie waits to take the switch to position its train to pick up passengers on the far track. September, 2011.
Ann Marie takes the switch Ann Marie pulls her train through the switch into Deer Park Station. September, 2011.
Ann Marie Ann Marie percolates at Deer Park Station. September, 2011.

We boarded combination car 1010 for a ride back to Ardenwood Station. The engineer paused before the last curve into Ardenwood Station and picked two nice-looking tomatoes. He reached through the window and gave one to a little girl on the coach.
1010 Combination car 1010 carried a lighter load than A&W 1's train. People sat in both sections. September, 2011.
1010 doorway A plate in the doorway of combination car 1010 has the year it was built (1882) and the initials of its builder and original operator, the San Joaquin and Sierra Nevada Railroad. September, 2011.
longer line When we got back to Ardenwood Station, we found that the line had gotten to be even longer. September, 2011.

Here is the flier for the event.

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September, 2012

Ann Marie Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter, was there for the fourth straight year. Note the coal smoke. September, 2012.

Ardenwood Historic Farm, just across the Dumbarton Bridge in Fremont, is operated by the East Bay Regional Park District. Forty-Niner George Washington Patterson's farm and home are preserved to show what life was like on a prosperous Nineteenth Century farm.

One of the features of the farm is a horse-drawn railroad, operated by the Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources as a tribute to the South Pacific Coast's horse operated Centerville branch.
Rail Fair sign A sign on Ardenwood Station advises people of ticket prices for the Rail Fair. September, 2012.

We went to the 12th annual Labor Day Railfair at Ardenwood Farm. It was cold and overcast when we got there at 10am, but the sky gradually cleared. There were no horse-powered train rides this year, but steam locomotive Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0T, was there for the fourth straight year. Ann Marie pulled a three car train: the covered car usually pulled by horses and two flats.
Steam train rides A sign at Ardenwood Station advertises steam train rides. September, 2012.

Another guest locomotive sat idly in the yard, having had a valve fail the night before the fair started.
Smoking Ann Marie puts out some coal smoke after pulling the train into Ardenwood Station for the first run of the day. September, 2012.

Ann Marie put out a lot of coal smoke on her first runs, but the fire got adjusted over time and the exhaust looked better. On the first run of the day, the conductor said that people in the covered car, which was directly behind the locomotive, might want to move. Normally the covered car is spotted in the middle of the consist so the roof won't trap the coal smoke. Later in the day, they were able to rearrange the cars.
equipment Brake wheels and link and pin couplers between two cars. September, 2012.
extinguisher The fire extinguisher on the covered car. September, 2012.
Ann Marie waits Ann Marie has run around her train and now she waits for the switch to be thrown so she can couple up to pull the train to Deer Park. September, 2012.
station Ardenwood Station from the train. September, 2012.
Deer Park runby/1 Ann Marie runs past the train at Deer Park. September, 2012.
Deer Park runby/2 Another view of Ann Marie running past the train at Deer Park. September, 2012.
backing down Ann Marie back down on the train at Deer Park. September, 2012.
Ann Marie rolls Ann Marie rolls towards the train at Ardenwood Station. September, 2012.

On display near the station was an 1887 Carter Brothers-built horse car which ran for the Oakland Railroad and then a line in Berkeley. The SPCRR hopes to build new running gear to replace the rubber tires.
horse car A Carter Brothers horse car. September, 2012.
horse car Note the fine details of the woodwork on the roof of the Carter Brothers horse car. The bullseye window would have had a lamp behind it at night to mark the car. September, 2012.
horse car The platform of the Carter Brothers horse car. September, 2012.
horse car The bell on the roof of the Carter Brothers horse car. Note the clerestory windows. September, 2012.
horse car A peek into the interior of the Carter Brothers horse car. September, 2012.

There was a big Garden Scale display, and a modular N-Scale display.
Diablo Pacific banner The Diablo Pacific Short Line hosted the garden-scale layout. September, 2012.
San Francisco A San Francisco scene includes Victorians, two cable cars and a donkey engine. September, 2012.
cable car A colorful model cable car. September, 2012.
cable car on hill Various characters ride a model cable car up or down a hill. September, 2012.
San Francisco scene Another angle of the San Francisco scene. September, 2012.

We had a picnic by the farmyard. We went and saw the goats, sheep, rabbits, cows, pigs and fowl.
calf A newly arrived calf next to its mother. September, 2012.
fowl Ain't nobody here but us chickens. September, 2012.

Back at Deer Park, we found Ann Marie arriving after another trip.
Deer Park arrival Ann Marie arrives with a train from Ardenwood Station. Note the much clearer exhaust. September, 2012.
waiting to switch Ann Marie waits for a brakeman to throw the switch so she can run around the train. September, 2012.
run by Ann Marie runs by the train at Deer Park. September, 2012.
on the road On our way to Ardenwood Station. September, 2012.
Ardenwood Station Ardenwood Station from the train. September, 2012.
Davenport locomotive The other visiting locomotive, an 0-4-4T Davenport, sat disabled in the yard. September, 2012.
NWP 5591 Northwestern Pacific caboose 5591 was built for predecessor North Pacific Coast around 1890. September, 2012.
NWP 5591 The Southern Pacific herald on a box car which serves as a museum. September, 2012.

Here is the flier for the event.

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August, 2013

Ann Marie Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter, was there for the fifth straight year. August, 2013.

Ardenwood Historic Farm, just across the Dumbarton Bridge in Fremont, is operated by the East Bay Regional Park District. Forty-Niner George Washington Patterson's farm and home are preserved to show what life was like on a prosperous Nineteenth Century farm.

One of the features of the farm is a horse-drawn railroad, operated by the Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources as a tribute to the South Pacific Coast's horse operated Centerville branch.
Rail Fair sign A sign on Ardenwood Station advises people of ticket prices for the Rail Fair. August, 2013.

We went to the 13th annual Labor Day Railfair at Ardenwood Farm. Traffic was fine on the Dumbarton Bridge, despite the Bay Bridge being closed for the cutover to the new eastern span. It was warm when we got there at 10am, and it gradually got warmer. There were no horse-powered train rides this year, but steam locomotive Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0T, was there for the fifth straight year. Ann Marie pulled a three car train: the covered car usually pulled by horses and two flats.
Coupler and brake The link and pin coupler and brake equipment on one of the train cars. August, 2013.

I didn't hear or smell the locomotive when we arrived. The conductor explained that it was at the other end of the line where it spent the night and they were having some trouble getting the fire going.
Ardenwood Station While we waited, I snapped a few shots of Ardenwood Station. August, 2013.
Ardenwood Station closer A closer view of Ardenwood Station. August, 2013.
Ardenwood Station sign The Ardenwood Station sign. August, 2013.
Plymouth The Plymouth locomotive is used for work trains and switching. August, 2013.

I like to catch the first train. The line at Ardenwood Station kept getting longer and longer during the day. They had signs posted saying that all trips would be one-way, but Deer Park never developed a long line. We made a round trip on the first train, and later caught one back from Deer Park.
Conductor The conductor explains that the steam locomotive should be along shortly. August, 2013.
Ann Marie arrives Ann Marie rolls past the end of the train and into the yard. August, 2013.
Ann Marie switch Ann Marie rolls towards the switch. August, 2013.
Ann Marie switch/2 Ann Marie rolls through the switch. August, 2013.
Ann Marie backs Ann Marie backs towards the train. August, 2013.
coupling The conductor lifts the locomotive's bent link to couple to the train. August, 2013.
pin The conductor drops the pin to complete the coupling process. August, 2013.
safety briefing The conductor gives the crew a safety briefing before service begins. August, 2013.
Ardenwood Station from train Ardenwood Station from the train. August, 2013.
smoke At Deer Park, the smokestack shows the effect of a fresh scoop of coal. August, 2013.
Ardenwood Station return Returning to Ardenwood Station from Deer Park. August, 2013.
the line The line had grown by the time we got back to Ardenwood Station. August, 2013.

We had a picnic at the tables. There was a big Garden Scale display, a live steam display and a modular N-Scale display.
cable cars A display of cable cars along the G Scale layout. August, 2013.
cable cars The BAGRS (Bay Area Garden Railroad Society) Roving Garden Railroad was on display. August, 2013.
Galloping Goose A Rio Grande Southern Galloping Goose on thhe BAGRS Roving Garden Railroad. I don't think any of the geese were Mack M-80s. August, 2013.

We saw sheep, goats, rabbits, chickens and turkeys, but no swine. We got to meet Red, who is now the regular horse on the horse-drawn train rides, and Goliath, who is learning the job. The SPCRR is trying to raise the money to buy harness for Goliath.
Red Red, a Belgian, usually hauls the horse car. August, 2013.
Goliath Goliath, also a Belgian, is learning the ropes. August, 2013.

Back at Deer Park, we admired the variety of signs.
Danger Keep Off the Track Danger Keep Off the Track. August, 2013.
Train Ride Passengers Form Line Here Train Ride Passengers Form Line Here. August, 2013.
All Train Rides Are One Way All Train Rides Are One Way. They did not enforce the policy. August, 2013.
Please Stay Off Platform and Tracks Please Stay Off Platform and Tracks When Train is Not in Station. August, 2013.
speeder A speeder arrived before the train. August, 2013.
Deer Park Ann Marie pushes her train into Deer Park. August, 2013.
steaming Ann Marie steams back to Ardenwood. August, 2013.
schedule A sign at Ardenwood Station gives the day's schedule. I would like to take the 4pm trip to the end of track some time. August, 2013.
historical markers The garden by Ardenwood Station has some historical markers. August, 2013.
plaque This plaque marks the Patterson Ranch being placed on the National Register of Historical Places in 1985. August, 2013.

Here is the flier for the 2013 event.

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September, 2014

Ann Marie Cortez Mining Company 1, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter, was there for the sixth straight year. September, 2014.

This year we went on Monday. The Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association had already gone home.

It was moderately warm. Two steam locomotives operated. Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0, was there for the sixth straight year. Antelope and Western 1, an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, was back for the first time since 2011. There was only one train, so the locomotives swapped each time the train reached Deer Park. There were big crowds, so we never got to make a round trip.

Deanna Antelope and Western 1, an 1889 Porter 0-4-0, was there for the first time since 2011. September, 2014.

line We arrived a little later than usual so there was a long line. September, 2014.

prices A sign on Ardenwood Station advises people of ticket prices for the Rail Fair. September, 2014.

one way A sign at the depot stressed that rides would be one-way only. September, 2014.

Antelope and Western 1 At Deer Park, Antelope and Western 1 waits its turn to take the train for a trip to Ardenwood Station and back. September, 2014.

carbarn sign At Deer Park, a sign said that ticketed passengers could take a speeder ride to the new carbarn. I did not get to do it. September, 2014.

speeder sign At Deer Park, the speeder and a trailer wait to take people for a tour of the new carbarn. September, 2014.

Here is the flier for the 2014 event.

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September, 2015

The 15th annual Washington Township Railroad Fair was held over Labor Day weekend, Saturday-Monday September 5-7. We didn't get to go.
Here is the flier for the 2015 event.

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September, 2016

prices A sign on Ardenwood Station advises people of ticket prices for the Rail Fair. September, 2016.

Ann Marie Ann Marie waiting to leave Ardenwood Station. September, 2016.

We went to the 16th annual Ardenwood Railroad Fair on the Monday of Labor Day weekend. We got there a little before 10am and there was a short line. While we waited, Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0, there for the sixth straight year, linked to the waiting cars. There was a short line for the train. The volunteers said ours was probably the only trip of the day where they would allow people to stay on at Deer Park and return to Ardenwood station.

Ann Marie links onto the train at Ardenwood Station.

speeder The speeder pulls its trailer into Ardenwood Station. September, 2016.

Before we left Deer Park, a speeder arrived, pulling a trailer with passengers.

backing Ann Marie backs onto the train at Deer Park. The brakeman faces the train. The fireman is behind him. The engineer and owner sits on the right. September, 2016.

wipe down Back at Ardenwood Station, Ann Marie's engineer/owner gives her a wipe. September, 2016.

maintenance Ann Marie receives some cosmetic maintenance at Ardenwood Station. September, 2016.

crash An unfortunate accident at the model train layout. The garden-scale pilot was not injured. September, 2016.

We walked to the farmyard and looked at the model train layouts. After we ate our lunch at a picnic table, we visited the animals.

sheep This sheep seemed happy. We also saw goats, rabbits and cows. September, 2016.

Katie Plymouth locomotive Katie was switching while we waited in line. While the park was open, it sat by the combination car. September, 2016.

A brakeman on the train said that they no longer operate the horse-drawn railcar because they can't get voluteers to take care of the horses. Instead, they use Katie to pull the train.

Katie closeup A closer view of Plymouth locomotive Katie. September, 2016.

Schedule The schedule posted at Ardenwood Station. September, 2016.

Here is the flier for the 2016 event.

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September, 2017

prices A sign on Ardenwood Station advises people of ticket prices for the Rail Fair. September, 2017.

Ann Marie Ann Marie waiting to leave Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

Sunday we went to the 18th annual Washington Township Railroad Fair at Ardenwood Farm. The weather was overcast and muggy. Turnout was low, probably because of the recent excessive heatwave. A volunteer on the train said that there only about 200 visitors on Saturday. Ann Marie, an 1890 Porter 0-4-0, was there for the ninth straight year.

passenger car One of the newly covered passenger cars. September, 2017.

The two open flats now have walls and roofs. They were nice.

Ann Marie links onto the train at Ardenwood Station.

Ann Marie runs from Deer Park to Ardenwood Station.

combine and boxcars 1882 Southern Pacific combination car 1010 and two boxcars in the yard at Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

combine and boxcars/2 Another view of 1882 Southern Pacific combination car 1010 and two boxcars in the yard at Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

Ann Marie approaches Ann Marie approaches her train at Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

Schedule The schedule posted at Ardenwood Station. Crowds were thin so we made a round trip on the first run. September, 2017.

doodlebug A doodlebug on the Bay Area Garden Railway Society Roving Garden Railroad. September, 2017.

We walked around to visit the garden railway layouts and the farm yard.

Mack railbus A Mack railbus on the Bay Area Garden Railway Society Roving Garden Railroad. September, 2017.

goat A goat lounges in his pen. September, 2017.

goat/2 Another goat lounges checks to see if we have anything to eat. September, 2017.

pig sign A sign wqarns that pigs can bite. Yes they can. September, 2017.

pigs drink Two pigs drink. September, 2017.

cows Five cows try to find shelter under one little tree. September, 2017.

Ann Marie arrives Ann Marie arrives at Deer Park Station. She will back away run around her train on the other track. September, 2017.

We walked to Deer Park Station and waited for the train.

closed car/2 One of the newly enclosed cars at Deer Park Station. September, 2017.

debark Passengers debark at Deer Park Station. The yellow car is the former horse-drawn car. Note the light crowd. September, 2017.

closed car/3 One of the newly enclosed cars at Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

Ann Marie switches Ann Marie switches to the other track to go around her train at Ardenwood Station. September, 2017.

There were no speeder rides this year.

Here is the flier for the 2017 event.

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Last updated 30-September-2017