Alpine aka Duffy – a town that was at the 18.1 mile mark from Fort Bragg on the Skunk Route

Elk wasn’t always Elk. It was once called Greenwood. Duffy was once Alpine. Why the name changes? In California all towns having a post office had to have a unique name. There were two Greenwoods and Alpines hence the name changes.

When Alpine was a thriving community it was the end of the CWR (Skunk Train) route. It had a population of about 1,200 and was bigger than Fort Bragg at the time. The town included a tavern, a school and a post office. A fire in 1919 destroyed the buildings and the town was never rebuilt.

Stagecoaches came to Alpine from Willits via a ridge route and passengers alighted from Comptche (12 miles away) and Port Bragg.

Stagecoach at Duffy Depot

Stagecoah loading at Duffy - a town that existed along the CWR/Skunk Train route

Stagecoach loading at Duffy


Minion Hijack on the Mendocino Coast Model Railroad

Our layout is, at heart, an attempt to show the visitor how logging took place along the Mendocino Coast in the late 1800’s through the early 1949’s. But, as Frank Davis our Chief Operating Officer will tell you, a little whimsy is VERY popular with guests. Frank provides whimsy with a pack of Minions that have descended upon the layout. Frank is continually moving our Minions tribe around – so, you just never know what you might find those despicable little yellow fiends doing. One day the Minions decided that hijacking a MOW (Maintenance of Way) yarder and a Crummy belonging to the loggers was a good idea!

Here are the boys off on their adventure.

minion Hi-jack a MOW on the Mendocino Coast Model Railroad

Hijack under way ……

HOLD IT, HOLD It, HOLD IT ……… we’ve forgotten two of the guys!!!!!!

HOLD IT we've forgoton two minions - scene from the Mendocino Coast Model Railroad

HOLD IT!!!!!!!!

Come on – pedal to the metal – we’re being followed!!!!

Minions escaping with a MOW on the Mendocino Coast Model Railroad

Is this fun or what?????

Want to see what the boys are up to right now? Come on by  our railroad……..




What’s it like at the Mendocino Coast Model Railroad’s layout when we are open to the public?

These pics taken by daughter Holly Phillips give you an idea.

Looking toward the North End of the Layout

Looking toward the North End of the Layout

The Banner at the top of this photo is the only thing left from the Club's first aborted layout

The Banner at the top of this photo is the only thing left from the Club’s first aborted layout

You can see a lady taking photos. We reckon about 150 to 200 photos get taken by visitors every time we are open.

You can see a lady taking photos. We reckon about 150 to 200 photos get taken by visitors every time we are open!

A typical day at the office!

Copyright of Old Pictures in our Website and its associated Blogs

Various persons and organizations have criticized inclusion in the website and blogs of photographs and text which they believe belong to them and or have been copyrighted by them. We have also been told that we should attribute  photos and or text.

Roger Thornburn, our webmaster, has summarised the position of our Club (The Mendocino Coast Model Railroad & Historical Society):

The website, is the official website of “The Mendocino Model Railroad and Historical Society”,

We believe that any photo seen in public prior to 1923 is exempt from copyright.

Also, we’re a 501(c)(3)  entity, registered as an education organization, and as such, under the “Fair Use” clause of the Copyright law, we are exempt from requiring a license.  In particular, our organization is “non-commercial and is for nonprofit educational purposes.” See “Fair Use” defined here –


2017 Solar Eclipse

The recent solar eclipse was a total bust here in foggy Fort Bragg in Northern California. Exciting as it was it was not exciting enough for me to traipse 300 miles to Oregon to see it. So, I have been paging through my favorite sites looking for pics of the eclipse. There are lots but these three particularly turned me on.

Far away

Far away


Closer – look at the flares

Bingo - what a shot!!!!

Bingo – what a shot!!!!

Mesmerizing. Breathtaking what?

Train Wreck

We have a train wreck on our G Scale layout, The Mendocino Coast Railroad & Navigation Co. Visitors ask if there  really were train wrecks along the Mendocino Coast. The answer is “yes”. Alas, I don’t know exactly where the wreck in these two photos took place.

Hope no-one was hurt

Hope no-one was hurt

The track after the wreck

The track after the wreck

Please contact me if you have info on the photos.