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UP No. 844 steaming into Sparks

By September 19, 2012

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Union Pacific No. 844 steam locomotive will be in Sparks and open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, September 26. The visit is part of UP's 150th anniversary celebration. It's free to come and enjoy this visit by the last steam engine constructed for Union Pacific. The locomotive was built in 1944 and is now known as the "Living Legend."

Union Pacific steam locomotive No. 844 rolling east near Portola, CA.
Union Pacific steam locomotive No. 844 rolling east near Portola, CA. Photo © Stan White.

No. 844 will be at the Union Pacific Rail Yard, 1 S. Pyramid Way, which is near John Ascuaga's Nugget in Sparks. You'll be able to tour exhibits in a traveling museum, try being an engineer on a locomotive simulator, and collect 150th anniversary souveniers. At 11:30 a.m., UP, state, and local officials will declare Sparks an official Union Pacific Town.

Note for train chasers - According to the official schedule, No. 844 will depart Sparks at 8 a.m. on Thursday, September 27. The train will take the Sierra route over Donner Pass, with stops in Truckee and Colfax. The day's destination is Sacramento and the California State Railroad Museum. On Saturday and Sunday, September 29 - 30, the museum is hosting the free "Union Pacific - Building America for 150 Years!" celebration. Admission to the museum will be free, as will excursion train rides and lots of other special activities.

Closer to home, steam locomotive and train buffs can enjoy our own Nevada State Railroad Museum in Carson City. If you have never been to this excellent museum, see what you've been missing by taking a photo tour of the Nevada State Railroad Museum.

Sources: Union Pacific, Reno Gazette-Journal.

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