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El Dorado Western Railroad

The EL DORADO WESTERN RAILROAD currently operates its excursion railroad program on the Placerville Branch between Shingle Springs and Missouri Flat Road. Originally there were five combined freight and passenger depots, built to standard Southern Pacific Railroad designs, in Latrobe, Shingle Springs, El Dorado, Diamond Springs and Placerville. The only existing structure is a portion of the Shingle Springs freight depot, built after a devastating 1896 fire burned the original 1865 station. The town of El Dorado now has a scaled version of the El Dorado Station through the generosity of volunteers and donors.

Rides are given on historic Gang Cars which were used by railroad inspectors, officials, workers, and others to travel the rails. The round trip takes about 40 to 45 minutes, and will return you to the place you boarded. Maximum speed is 10 mph, and road crossing safety protocols are followed.

Video about the El Dorado Western Railroad and the history of railroads in El Dorado County

Produced in 2014 as part of the "Touch the Past" series, a collaboration between the El Dorado County Historical Museum and the El Dorado County Library.