San Diego County, California Coaster

From nycsubway.org


San Diego Coaster train at Del Mar. Photo by Richard Chase, July 2009.


The San Diego COASTER, identifier SDNX, which runs daily (except Sunday) from the Santa Fe Depot at San Diego to Oceanside, is one of the most picturesque railroads in the US. Both the paint scheme of a brilliant blue, white and ocean green plus the right-of-way which follows the California coast make it one of the nicest trains to ride and photograph.

The Coaster, which started operations Feb. 27, 1995, operates on 41.1 mile of the former Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe right-of-way. In addition to eight stops including San Diego and Oceanside, the Coaster also has maintenance facilities at their yard in Camp Pendleton and can also be seen waiting for the next run at the 12th & Imperial St. yards which it shares with San Diego's famous red trolleys.

The yards are private property so it would be wise not to venture in for photographs.

There are plenty of scenic locations, besides downtown San Diego, the Torrey Pines & Del Mar Bluffs are some of the best as well as Oceanside and almost any place in-between. Surfers can be seen crossing the tracks at Del Mar & Torrey Pines bluffs so it's very accessible. Caution is advised-- the Coaster and the Amtak Surfliner are running at speed through these areas. And rattlesnakes can suddenly appear on the bluffs.

The Coaster operates four F40PH-2C and two F59PHI engines with 5 - 6 Bombardier bi-level cars including cab cars. Normal consist has the engine on the North end, and the cab car on the South end. Afternoon spotting is preferable as most locations are on the western side of the tracks. The Coaster runs 11 round-trips Mon-Fri, and 4 on Sat with an additional Northbound run when the Padres are playing a home game. No service on Sundays so your best chance of spotting / photography is Monday thru Friday.

Photo Gallery

Five Random Images

Image 107874

(161k, 930x618)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Oceanside (San Diego Coaster/Amtrak)

Image 107876

(192k, 930x616)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Old Town San Diego (San Diego Coaster/Amtrak)

Image 107880

(232k, 930x618)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Santa Fe Depot - Downtown San Diego (San Diego Coaster/Amtrak)

Image 107895

(251k, 1044x705)
Photo by: Richard Chase

Image 108077

(277k, 1044x705)
Photo by: Richard Chase
Location: Del Mar (San Diego Coaster/Amtrak)

More Images: 1-35

Page Credits

By Richard Chase.

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