Napa Valley Wine Train uses new technology to revitalize classic ride

The conductor of the classic Napa Valley Wine Train is using the old ride to blaze a new path. 

For 35 years, the train has transported passengers through Napa Valley’s wine country, the California region north of San Francisco that is home to more than 400 wineries. The locomotive, with quarters inspired by classic Pullman cars, has long been a way to see the sprawling area, carrying visitors through the valley in style and luxury. 

Now, the Napa Valley Wine Train is going green to protect the delicate environment it travels through. 

According to General Manager Nathan Davis, the Napa Valley Wine Train uses a diesel engine that’s the cleanest in its class worldwide. The engine has been renamed the 1864 to honor the year the rail line was founded, and is compliant with stringent Environmental Protection Agency standards.

The train is one of the few to use the engine, which less fuel and means the train has nearly zero emissions. There’s no more billowing black smoke, said engineer Artemus Rogerson. 

“It’s nice driving this in the valley and not having a cloud of smoke,” Rogerson said. “People would complain sometimes about the train going by, so it’s just nice having this.” 

The train offers a smoother, quieter ride. Davis said that passengers and operators of the train don’t hear the new diesel engine running.

Davis said that he plans to have the whole fleet of trains going green by 2025. 

“It’s a slow-moving industry,” he explained. “But when we move, we get momentum, and we just keep plowing ahead.”

This post was originally published on CBS News

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