With the exception of the original equipment of the Carson and Colorado, the locomotives and rolling stock of the Southern Pacific Narrow Gauge were almost entirely hand me down from other western narrow gauges. Railroads that were widened to standard gauge such as the Nevada California Oregon, South Pacific Coast, Oregonian and others fed the Mina branch with its equipment throughout most of its existence.
Click here to learn more about C&C business car #2 pictured above.
Throughout the railroads 80 years of service, it maintained most of its equipment to a high standard. Fresh paint adorned boxcars as late as 1959, while service dates have been found on cars as late as February 1960, only two months prior to the railroads abandonment.
The S.P.’s nomadic fleet of equipment, with its sunburt red paint and gently sagging frames, has today become a modelers paradise.
Despite the fact that most of the equipment has long since been dismantled and exists only in memories and photos, a rather large fleet still survives. While most of these surviving cars spend their days as sheds scattered throughout the Owens Valley, some do indeed survive as living reminders of the “Slim Princess”. Pictures and locations of much of this surviving equipment can be found in the rosters listed below:
Beyond these rosters of surviving equipment, the C&C and SP had some unique pieces. Business car #2 (picture above), the innovative “pipe” boxcars (below) – so called because of the pipe framing -,officers car #10 “Esmeralda”, and far more utilitarian cars like all steel flatcar #209 (below). For comprehensive all time rosters Robert A. Baders wonderful book Southern Pacific Narrow Gauge Locomotives and Freight Equipment is an invaluable source.