Two women and a man walking across a wooden railroad trestle above a creek

Two women and a man, holding on to each other, as they cross over Jughandle trestle above Jughandle Creek, c. 1890. There was no roadway on top, only rails and ties, so it was scary business walking out on it. Nonetheless, people did, as this photograph shows. (Gift of Verda Wakerley Winney, Harry J. Wakerley Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

The Jughandle Creek trestle was completed early in 1884, under the direction of engineers and bridge builders from the Central Pacific Railroad. This huge wooden trestle was 1,000 feet long, 146 feet high, 82 feet wide at the base, and 12 feet wide at the top. At the time, it was one of the largest and tallest structures of its kind.

Wooden planks collapsed on a hillside with trees on either side

Jughandle trestle in Caspar after the earthquake of 1906. Image shows the bridge completely destroyed with a section of railroad track lying on a pile of wood. Photograph was taken as two images and glued together on a board. (Gift of Emery Escola, Emery Escola Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

The earthquake of 1906 caused the trestle to “collapse like a row of dominoes” but it was quickly rebuilt closely following the original specifications.

Walking Tours of Historic Mendocino – Join our expert docents for a stroll and lively commentary. You’ll pass by early pioneer homes, historic meeting places, and buildings that make up the the Mendocino Historic District.