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The Little Puffer Railway, San Francisco Zoo

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The Little Puffer Railway, San Francisco Zoo

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Date Posted:October 18th, 2005
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Description: The San Francisco Zoo is home to one of the world’s only old-fashioned miniature steam trains, affectionately known as "Little Puffer" by generations of San Francisco Zoo visitors. In 1998, Little Puffer was rebuilt and put back in service after being in storage for 20 years. Volunteers from the Golden Gate Railroad Museum painstakingly reconstructed missing parts, restored its original components and retrofitted it to run on cleaner-burning natural gas. The new one-third mile track takes new generations of steam train enthusiasts on its route past the bears, with views of Eagle Lake and Puente Al Sur.

Little Puffer is one of just seven 22-inch gauge “Class E” Cagney Brother’s miniature steam train locomotives built in 1904, and one of three that survives today. The train originally operated at the zoo from 1925 to 1978.

Rides on Little Puffer are $3 per person (children under 3 ride free).


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