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WP 165 basked in the sun for a few days while the 1503 got it new green paint. The 165 looks like a proper steam engine now with its boiler face back on. 7/29/19 - Photo by Greg Elems



WP165 Logo What railroad museum would be complete without a steam locomotive?  While the Western Pacific Railroad Museum is well known for having one of the largest collections of historic diesels in the world, Portola is also home to Western Pacific Railroad Museum's steam program.  Currently, 0-6-0 steam switching locomotive #165 is under restoration.  Our steam department is headed by Roger Stabler.  Assisting Roger is recently retired head of Union Pacific's steam program, Steve Lee, and a large group of "Willing People" working to return Western Pacific steam to the "Feather River Route" for the first time in over 50 years.

Follow the WP 165 on Facebook  Facebook


Visit the WP 165 July 2019 Work Session Photo Gallery

Watch a two-part interview with members of the WP 165 Steam Crew

Visit the WP 165 May 2019 Work Session Photo Gallery

Visit the WP 165 September 2018 Work Session Photo Gallery

"Spring" 2017 Work Party
Team - (L to R): Roger Stabler, Kirk Baer, Bob Sims, Steve Lee, Bil Jackson, Channing Walker, Alexander Klaer (Wasatch welder in firebox), Michael Giarritta, John James, Erik Olsen, Chris Allan
- Photo by Michael Clawson 5/5/17

- Photo by Greg Elems 10/14/17

- Photo by Paul Finnegan 9/4/16

- Photo by Greg Elems 9/9/16

- Photo by Paul Finnegan 7/4/15

We extend a special Thank YOU! to our friends at Wasatch Railroad Contractors for their on-going
support of the WP 165 restoration project.


  Western Pacific #165





Western Pacific 165 is an 0-6-0 switching locomotive built by the Schenectady Works of the American Locomotive Company. This engine was used at many of the WP's rail yards, including Stockton, Sacramento and Portola. It was built in November, 1919, for the United Verde Copper Company of Jerome, Arizona, as their number 87. On September 17, 1927, the 165 and three sister UVCC engines were sold to the WP and become the road's S-34 class, numbered 163-166.



These burly switchers supplemented WP's 12 existing 0-6-0s, but some 2-8-0s in working the various yards. The 165 last operated in March, 1953, as WP was winding down its last steam operations. The engine was retired in October, 1957. Five years later, the engine was donated to the City of San Leandro. The engine was displayed for many years at the San Leandro BART station, before being transferred to the Alameda County Fairgrounds for display there. It was later acquired by the Pacific Locomotive Association and was eventually acquired by the FRRS in a trade with a later owner.



On March 1, 2006, the 165 returned to Portola on a museum flatcar, marking the return of WP steam power to Plumas County for the first time in nearly 50 years.



  Locomotive Restoration


Work has now begun on the restoration of WP 165 to complete operation. Our Steam Crew is headed by Roger Stabler.


Click for the Steam Department News and Blog (for information up to September 2017)

Steam Facebook (for information since September 2017)

Click for a list of Train Sheet articles about the WP 165 in a new tab from the Train Sheet archive.



Please click the Donate link above to donate to the WP Steam Fund Or you can mail your donations to:

WP STEAM FUND - Feather River Rail Society
PO Box 608
Portola, CA 96122


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Operated by the Feather River Rail Society, a California 501(c)3 Non Profit Organization

700 Western Pacific Way, P.O. Box 608, Portola CA 96122-8636 | 1-530-832-4131 | email us at:

Copyright © 2021 Feather River Rail Society.  All Rights Reserved.  Page last updated:  Friday July 9, 2021 09:57 PDT