National Geographic : 1926 Jan
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Photograph by Captain A. W . Stevens T'11 SOUTHERN PACIFIC LINE TUNNELING ITS WAY TIIROUGHI TIlE SIERRA NE\'AI)A This railroad probably has as much difficulty in crossing the mountains at this point, some 30 miles northeast of Lake Tahoe, as at any point on its whole system. The snow sometimes reaches a depth here of 30 feet, so that it is necessary to inclose the rails with snowsheds, which can be seen beginning at the lower left corner of the picture. Not only is this part of the Sierras difficult for the railroad to cross, but it is also difficult for the automobile road, which may be noted in the center, twisting and turning, as it winds up the sides of the canyon. This photograph covers territory on the exact summit of the Sierra Nevada at the crossing of the Southern Pacific Railroad. Tunnel No. 6 is the Summit Tunnel; Summit Station is to the right of this tunnel. The highway passes under the railroad tracks east of Tunnel 7. In the right foreground is seen the new State highway under construction. The straight white line at the top of the picture is the second track of the Southern Pacific's main line under construction. Ie vainly searched the smiling land scape as far as Cape Charles, Virginia, where the Atlantic Ocean and lack of fuel put an end to his explorations with the Mail. Out of such ignominious beginnings has grown the finest example of depend able air transportation that the world has yet seen, flying over io,ooo,ooo miles and transporting more than 6,ooo,ooo pounds of mail. During the tentative period of the first two years neither pilots nor green field crews were quite sure how it would all turn out, while inexperienced executives led them from one false trail to the next and a hostile Congress frowned on the whole impossible undertaking.