About the Oregon Pacific Railroad
East Portland Branch - Portland, Oregon
The Oregon Pacific Railroad is a family owned and operated railroad company.   Commonly referred to as the OPR, this
company operates two separate branch lines in the Portland, Oregon metro area.   The OPR began operations in 1991 on
the East Portland Branch, in the heart of Portland, Oregon, when Richard Samuels purchased the remains of the Portland
Traction Company and began to rebuild a railroad operation that had been previously allowed to languish for years.   In 1993,
Richard Samuels purchased the former Southern Pacific Molalla Branch, which runs from Canby, Oregon to Molalla, Oregon
and now operates both branch lines as the Oregon Pacific Railroad Company.

Each branch of the OPR offers completely separate and diverse filming environments.  The East Portland Branch is located in
the heart of Portland in an area mixed of suburban, urban and urban river and wildlife park environments and is also located
next to the Oaks  Amusement park, a regular shooting location for production companies in the Portland Area.  The Molalla
Branch is located in a far more rural setting and runs through a combination of scenic woodlands and farmland.

Many other freight railroads in the region, have opted to discontinue recreational passenger and tourist services and other
non-freight activities, such as film projects, due to increased insurance costs and liability.  However, the OPR continues to
embrace these activities as potential business opportunities and as a means to enhance the imagine of railroading to the
public as well as help to promote and expand the local economy of the Portland Metro Area.

The OPR is a fully operational freight railroad.  While many private railroads friendly to film crews are often exclusively tourist
railroads and offer great opportunities for filming, the OPR is unique in that it's equipment and operations can be
representative of either a modern or historical industrial freight railroad or a passenger or tourist train.   The crew of the OPR
are full time professional railroaders with decades of experience.

The East Portland Branch offers the extremely unique feature of having approximately 3 miles of former dual track railroad
where one track was converted into a paved bike trail and the other track is still a fully operational railroad.  This close
proximity of a long paved trail to the railroad allowes for vehicles, camera equipment and other production equipment to travel
along side a moving train for extended distances uninterrupted.   Recent productions have taken advantage of that

Because the railroad is family owned and operated, decisions can be immediately made over any issues that may come up
and the company can be much easier to work with than a company that has layers of management.  The railroad is owned
and managed by Richard Samuels.  The coordinating manager of filming activities is Kelly Anable.  Both are more than happy
to talk with any interested parties and answer any questions that may come up.   Kelly is the film location coordinator and
would be the primary contact for any inquiries at 503-651-2231.

The OPR crews have a wide array of skills that involve everything from track work, maintenance and general fabrication.   
Most of the equipment owned by the OPR was constructed, modified and is maintained by OPR crews.   Almost all track work
is conducted by OPR crews.  This gives the OPR the unique ability to perform a wide variety of tasks and modifications that
might be required to accommodate a filming crew and their objectives, without having to hire or pay outside contractors in
most cases.   Just some of the skills available from the Samuels family are locomotive engineers, conductors, heavy
equipment operators, fabrication, industrial welding and wood working.  All of which could become valuable in set construction
or immediate maintenance needs.

For a more detailed history of the OPR railroad click here.

Below are some highlights of the two branch lines and the different scenes that can be accommodated.  
This line runs from an industrial park area of Milwaukie, Oregon and travels through a mixture of suburban, urban
neighborhoods, before passing under the famous Sellwood Bridge.   A paved bike/hiking trail follows right next to the railroad
for 3+ miles.  This paved trail offers potential opportunities for film crews to operate and film moving trains and equipment over
long distances from a hard flat surface of equal distance from the railroad most of it's length.  

Not far past the Sellwood bridge is the famous
Oaks Amusement Park.  Oaks Amusement Park is a more than 100 year old
fixture in the Portland area and has itself been used in a number of filming projects.   100 years ago, trolleys traveled down
this very railroad to drop passengers off at the amusement park and today, the OPR has a great working relationship with the
owner and operators Oaks Park who have graciously cooperated with the railroad when hosting events.

The railroad continues north past Oaks Amusement Park, where it passes through a unique urban wildlife setting.  The
famous Willamette River is just to the west of the railroad, while a urban wildlife refuge setting can be seen to the east.

The line then passes under the Ross Island Bridge, which offers urban high rise building settings and passes into an industrial
area of East Portland, before entering the terminus at the East Portland Yards and connecting to the Union Pacific Railroad.

For more details and photos of the East Portland Branch, click here.
Molalla Branch - Canby, Oregon
This line now operates from Liberal, Oregon.  The nearest major town is Molalla, Oregon.  The line begins south of Liberal
and passes through a large active lumber mill.   The line then continues north through a combination of woodland and farm
settings.  Most of this section of track is remote and offers a chance to film far away from public view and offers the
opportunity for quiet or noise controlled settings.

Continuing north, the railroad passes over several railroad bridges, including a relatively long bridge over the Molalla River.   
This setting offers several features not available anywhere else.  A nearby former logging road that parallels the Molalla River
railroad bridge offers an excellent and unimpeded platform for filming activities on the bridge.  The area is remote and not
accessible by the public and the river rarely sees boat activity in this location, allowing for uninterrupted and unimpeded

Continuing north, the railroad passes through a country setting and includes a number of railroad crossings over lonely 2 lane
paved roads, before entering a wooded area and then the City of Canby.   The railroad has a wye that crosses the busy
Highway 99E and then interchanges with the Union Pacific Railroad north of the highway.   Located over this crossing is a
large bridge that was once used as a truck logging bridge, but is now used as a bike path, that offers excellent overhead
filming opportunities.

For more photos and information about the Molalla Branch, click here.
Locomotives, Cabooses and Railroad Cars
Other views of the East Portland Branch during various times of the year.
Aerial view of the OPR shops
near Milwaukie, Oregon
View of the shops from the
One of several gated crossings
on the OPR.  This one at 17th
The railroad runs through a
quiet neighborhood in Sellwood.
Past scenery in Oaks Bottom
Wildlife Refuge
A paved trail follows right next to
approximately 3 miles of track
which would allow for unique
filming opportunities.
The Molalla Branch starts near Liberal, Oregon.  (the last three miles of the branch into Molalla is not in use)   Liberal is the location of a major
lumber (RSG Forest Products) and a feed mill (Willamette Egg).
A road overpass, over the railroad
tracks near Canby, offers an opportunity
to film oncoming trains.
This branch passes through mostly quiet countryside of woodlands and farmland.
As part of American Steel, there is a
spur that runs into a large enclosed
The Molalla Branch has numerous crossings with and without gates and several overpass trestles.
The Molalla River Bridge is the longest bridge on the branch and has been the subject of a scene at least one full feature film.   The site offers the
unique opportunity of a second unused bridge that runs directly adjacent to the railroad bridge that is a perfect filming platform with no hand rails
to interfere with shooting.   Note, the bridge is straight (middle picture is a panorama).
Who to Contact for More Information
For any questions about filming on the OPR, please call the OPR Business Office:

Copyright © 2004-2013 All Rights Reserved
Filming on the Oregon Pacific Railroad
The Oregon Pacific Railroad wishes to extend an invitation to film, TV production and location
companies to consider the OPR's two branch lines and railroad operations as a potential location
for filming railroad related scenes.   This page will give more information about the OPR and what
the OPR has to offer for film production crews.
For inquiries about filming on the OPR or any related questions, please call
Filming a scene for TNT's Leverage.
Craig Samuels photo
Car types most commonly available for the MOLALLA BRANCH
Car types most commonly available for the EAST PORTLAND BRANCH
Last Update: August 14, 2011
Prior Film and TV Projects on the OPR
More TV and movie shoots on the OPR can be seen on the following news, updates and photos pages, including
Gus Van Sant's "Restless".   The
official trailer for this movie features a scene filmed on the OPR.

News, updates and photos for 2009
News, updates and photos for 2010
TNT's Leverage TV Show Shoot
Last update: 4-10-11
TNT's Leverage TV Show Shoot
Last update: 8-23-10
From left to right:
A selection of privately owned speeders  2) A passenger car that is burned out but owned by the OPR  3) More passenger cars not owned by
the OPR, but possibly available, depending on private owner negotiation   
4) OPR owned open air car and matching caboose.   5)  OPR owned
matching caboose and locomotive.
From left to right:
The only traditional box car available on the OPR on a limited basis.  2) Typical refrigerated box car, most common on the OPR's East Portland
3) Older flatcar stored on the OPR, possibly available for use
From left to right:
Loaded centerbeam cars  2) More loaded centerbeam cars  3) Car next to engine is an unloaded centerbeam car  4) Loaded centerbeam cars
over the OPR's Molalla River bridge.
From left to right:
A train of hopper cars on the OPR's Molalla River bridge.  2) A train of hopper cars in Canby, Oregon.  3) A steel coil car on the OPR  4) Privately
owned speeders.
Refrigerated Box Car
Looks like a traditional box car, but equipped with an on board refrigeration unit.  Cars have side doors but are typically
sealed and not normally available for interior use.   These are the most common cars on the East Portland Branch.

Traditional Box Car
Several older units are stored on the OPR and are not in regular service and their use is dependent on condition.  Currently
only one car is available on a limited basis.    For additional cars contact the OPR for more info.  Please understand that
obtaining additional traditional box cars may not be possible or otherwise very difficult to obtain.

The OPR has access to one older flatcar that is currently used for storage and not in regular service.  Contact the OPR
for additional availability of this car

Passenger Cars
The OPR owns two passenger cars.  One is currently in extremely poor condition (interior burned) and is not in use but may
be available depending on the scene.   The other is an open tourist car with seating.    The OPR has contacts with the owners
of additional passengers cars and equipment that date to the 1940s and 1950s that are stored near the OPR.  Their use
would be dependent on permission and negotiation of the car's owners.   They are included as possible options, but are not
advertised as available as the OPR has no ownership or control over them.

Other types of cars are not normally available on the East Portland Branch, but contact the OPR for
additional information or any questions.

Speeder Motor Cars
The OPR has volunteers and friends that own and operate private speeder motor cars.   These speeders were once common
on the railroads until recent decades, used by railroad maintenance workers and come in various shapes and sizes.   Some of
these may be available for filming.
Center Partition Railcar (Centerbeam)
The most common car on the Molalla Branch is the centerbeam car, which is an open flat deck flat car with a divided center
beam and bulkhead ends, used to carry finished lumber.

Hopper Car
Hopper cars are commonly shipped on the Molalla Branch, but availability of these cars is dependent on customer use.

Steel Coil Car
One customer of the Molalla Branch regularly ships via steel coil cars, but these may be available on a limited basis
depending on customer use.

Dump Car
The OPR owns one dump car that is normally used to carry dirt and gravel and is available for use.

Passenger Cars
Other types of cars are not normally available to the OPR on the Molalla Branch, but contact the OPR for
additional information.   Also, passenger equipment cannot normally be operated on the Molalla Branch under normal
circumstances, however please contact the OPR for additional questions.

Speeder Motor Cars
The OPR has volunteers and friends that own and operate private speeder motor cars.   These speeders were once common
on the railroads until recent decades, used by railroad maintenance workers and come in various shapes and sizes.   Some of
these may be available for filming.
(Operating Locomotives):
from left to right:
1) OPR 1202, EMD SW1200RSu  2) OPR 100, EMD SW1 3) OPR 1413, GMD-1
Locomotives and cabooses on the EAST PORTLAND BRANCH
Locomotives on the MOLALLA BRANCH
(Locomotives that are not operable, but possibly usable when coupled to a train with an operating locomotive)
from left to right:
1) OPR 187, EMD NW5  2) OPR 5100, GE 70 tonner
Additional locomotives and equipment exist on the East Portland Branch that are in various states of non running condition.  
To see other equipment, please visit our
Locomotive Roster Page.
(Cabooses that are currently available)
from left to right:
1) Union Pacific Caboose, privately owned, but available.  2) OPR custom built passenger caboose  
OPR operable traditional UP caboose.
Type of Equipment Available on the
EAST PORTLAND BRANCH  (Porltand to Milwaukie, Oregon)
Type of Equipment Available on the
MOLALLA BRANCH (Canby to Liberal, Oregon)
(Operating Locomotives):
from left to right:
1) OPR 901, EMD SW9 2) OPR 801, EMD SW8
The OPR owns and operates a variety of railroad related equipment.  Most of which is modern equipment representative of
what the public would expect to see operating on a typical freight railroad anywhere in the country today or as far back as the
1940s.   However, realistic scenes could easily be filmed for periods dating back into the 1800s, using other equipment that
may be available.   Equipment not featured on the OPR website and not owned by the OPR may be more
difficult to obtain for filming.

The OPR currently has 5 operational diesel locomotives of various types.   Plus 7 additional diesel locomotives of unique
types and styles and various condition that can be used as static display or towed by an operational locomotive.

The OPR owns or has access too at least three different types of cabooses, one of which is a unique style with a large open
platform deck, that may provide an opportunity for close up filming of locomotives or cars that it can be attached too.   

The OPR owns or has access to a variety of freight cars, including box cars, center beams, hoppers, and refrigerator cars.
Please note the availability of traditional box cars is very limited at this time.

The OPR owns and operates a variety of maintenance equipment that one might typically see operate on a railroad.  This
includes smaller track machinery, a large modern tamper machine, boom cranes and other equipment.

The OPR owns or has access too a unique selection of hy-rail equipment, including a modern Jeep Wrangler, a mid size pick
up, full size truck and a dump truck, all of which are equipped to drive on railroad rails.   In addition, the OPR owns or has
access to speeders, which can also run and operate on rails.

For pictures of all OPR owned and operated equipment, please visit our Roster Page.