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Private Railcars
("Private Varnish")

Information about Private Railcars. Private Railcars, especially historic passenger railcars, are often referred to as "Private Varnish". Most of the private railcars that are still in existence today were once owned by major freight railroads as either Pullman Cars, Business Cars, or other passenger sleeping cars or coach cars.

Click on each photo, graphic, or text link below for more information on private passenger railcars from various websites and organizations: /

Oct 23, 2021 - A One-Way Trip Aboard the Tioga Pass to San Diego: Report & Photos by Chris Guenzler. Elizabeth and I saw this classified advertisement on Trainorders: "Well, it appears that the schedule changes on the Surfliner routes on October 25th will probably end private car trips to San Diego. Here's a last minute opportunity to ride a real business car on the rear of a... Read More>>

Oct 15, 2021 - Chris Parker Memorial Run of the Tioga Pass private rail car: Photos & Text by Carl Morrison. Round trip LA to San Diego, (Would have been Chris' 65th birthday). Good afternoon everyone. To honour the memory of our dear friend Chris Parker, we are chartering the private car "Tioga Pass" for a... Read More>>

Oct 15, 2021 - A Tioga Pass Trip To Remember the Late Chris Parker 1956-2021: Report & Photos by Chris Guenzler. My dear friend Chris Parker passed away suddenly on June 26th, 2021. With no public service planned, Elizabeth came up with the idea of chartering the private car "Tioga Pass" in memory of Chris on his birthday, October 15th. She discussed the idea with me and I heartily agreed as the "Tioga Pass" and the "Pony Express" were Chris' two favorite cars in which to ride. We e-mailed Norm Orfall, owner of the "Tioga Pass", who was also good friends with Chris, and... Read More>>

Oct 15, 2021 - Chris Parker Memorial Train Ride From Los Angeles To San Diego Round-Trip: Report & Photos by Steve Grande. Barbara, my wife, and I boarded The Tioga Pass private railcar in Anaheim. Others had boarded in either Los Angeles, Fullerton or Santa Ana. This private railcar was chartered and made this round-trip journey in tribute to Chris Parker, a member of... Read More>>

Oct 18, 2019 - Overland Trail and Pacific Trail Trip - Los Angeles to Chicago: Photos & Text by Carl Morrison. The vintage railroad passenger cars traveled to Chicago to participate in the new "Autumn Colors Express" (the old "New River Train") later in October in West Virginia... Read More>>

April 19, 2018 - An Excursion on the Patric Henry Private Railcars: Report & Photos by Steve Grande. My wife and I were one of the 3 couples that rode the Patrick Henry Private Railcars from Los Angeles, California, to Albuquerque, New Mexico. This report contains photos and text from that trip plus a couple of short video clips... Read More>>

Feb 10, 2017 - Rail Rangers Tentative 2017 Schedule: Report & Photos by Roberty & Kandace Tabern Join us for an onboard educational program on a private rail car. The APRHF is proud to announce that its' Rail Rangers program will be back for a third season of trips... Read More>>

Mar 24, 2017 - Private Rail Excursion for Solar Eclipse Planned: Report & Photos by Robert & Kandace Tabern Join us for a memorable weekend to La Plata and Northern Missouri. Tickets are now on sale (and going very quick!) for a private rail excursion to La Plata, Missouri ahead of this summer's total solar eclipse. This four-day, three-night guided journey will take... Read More>>

Aug 19-22, 2017 - Rail Rangers Private Rail Excursion - Chicago to La Plata, MO Round-trip for Solar Eclipse Weekend by Rail Rangers.. Contributions from: Robert & Kandace Tabern and Bob & Amy Cox. What better way to witness the full solar eclipse than to travel most of the way to the viewing location in a historic 1950's dome car? That is... Read More>>

Oct 5, 2016 - Private Railroad Car Trip to La Plata, MO: Report & Photos by Robert & Kandace Tabern Ever since the Rail Rangers program was founded on July 20, 2015, one of our major goals was to bring a group of passengers to La Plata, Missouri by private railcar. While the headquarters of the American Passenger Rail Heritage Foundation is always a great place for railfans to stop off at... Read More>>

April 23, 2016 - Rail Rangers Chicago to St. Louis, MO 2016 Charter: Report & Photos by Robert & Kandace Tabern Even though we both have ridden the rail line several times before, we really hadn't done much research on this particular route. So, before the first flake of snow began to fall last winter, we... Read More>>

Nov 7, 2015 Latest Outside the Rails book includes glimpse of Galesburg The authors of "Outside the Rails," a series of informational guides about the Midwest's passenger train routes, visited The Galesburg Public Library Saturday afternoon for a presentation and book signing. Each of their books follows a specific train route, providing pictures of local attractions and factual information; their most recent edition, which follows the route from Chicago to La Plata, Missouri, includes information about Galesburg... Read More>>

If you are a private railcar owner or tourist agency that arranges private railcar trips, click here to read about how Rail Rangers can enhance the tour experience you offer.

Click on each of the below images for photos and travelogues from past American Association of Private RailCar Owners (AAPRCO) conventions and from travel on private railcars:

AAPRCO Travel & Convention Coverage
Reports & Photos:

Rail Rangers
is a members of

The American Association of Private Railroad Car Owners (AAPRCO)

TrainWeb hosted websites
related to Private Railcars:

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