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Sierra Railroad To Buy “Skunk” Train

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The Oakdale-based Sierra Northern Railroad Company continues to spread its rail network with the purchase of the popular Mendocino County tourist train.

A federal bankruptcy court has accepted a $1.4 million bid from the Sierra Northern Railroad to take over the famous “Skunk” Train.

The Skunk shut its 40-mile run through the redwood forests of the Mendocino coast after Labor Day when its parent company went broke. If railroad owner Mike Hart and his company gets the trains running as planned, it will be good news for the financially struggling Fort Bragg area. Nearly 60,000 tourists rode the rails of the former logging route every year. Skunk trains could be rolling again by next summer.

The Sierra Railroad hauls lumber products from Sonora mills and also operates the Golden Sunset dinner trains out of Oakdale.