t>tJ4 Route 97.
FRESNO. From San Francisco
b. Via the San Joaquin Valley.
484 M. Sootheen Pacific Railway in 15-21 hrs. (fare $ 15; sleeper $ 2.50).
From San Francisco, via Oakland, to (32 M.) Port Costa, see
pp. 503, 502. 36 M. Martinez, the usual starting-point for an ascent
of Mt. Diablo (see p. 553), which rises to the right. At (50 M.)
Cornwall we leave Suisun Bay (p. 502) and turn towards the S.
About 2 M. to the S. of (68 M.) Byron are the Byron Hot Springs
(130° Fahr.; Hotel, from $3). — 83 M. Tracy (65 ft.) is the junction
of the old route to San Francisco via Livermore (famous for its
Sauternes) and Niles and of a line to Fresno (see below) via Los Banos
and Mendota, on the W. side of the San Joaquin ('Wahkeen') River.
A little farther on we cross the San Joaquin and reach (94 M.) Lathrop
(25 ft.; Hotel, with rail, restaurant, $2-3, meal 75 c), the junction
of the old line to Sacramento via, Stockton (p. 501). We now
ascend the great San Joaquin Valley, the granary of California,
200 M. long and 30 M. wide, producing endless crops of grain and
fruit, including oranges, figs, olives, raisins, and grapes. Irrigation
is practised here on a gigantic scale, and many oil-wells are seen. 114 M.
Modesto (90 ft.; 2024 inhab.). —152 M. Merced (170 ft,; 1969 inhab.),
a thriving trading and shipping centre, is the starting-place of one of
the chief routes to the Yosemite Valley (see p. 574). Various rivers
are crossed. — 178 M. Berenda (255 ft.) is the junction of a branch-
line to (22 M.) Raymond, forming the usual approach to the Yose¬
mite Valley (see R. 101). The Sierra Nevada is visible to the left,
including Mts. Lyell (13,040 ft), Tyndall (ca. 14,000 ft), Whitney
(14,898 ft), and Goddard (ca. 14,000 ft). —185 M. Madera (280 ft),
a shipping-point for timber, brought from the mountains by a 'flume',
50 M. long. Near (197 M.) Herndon we cross the San Joaquin. —
207 M. Fresno (290ft; Hughes, Grand Central, $2-2l/2), a well-
built and well-paved city with 12,470 inhab., is the centre of a
large raisin-growing district, which annually produces 75,000,000
pounds of raisins. The value of these and its other products, com¬
prising brandy, olive-oil, fruits, grain, lumber, and dairy produce,
amounted in 1903 to $ 15,000,000. The water necessary for irriga¬
tion its brought from the monntains by an extensive system of canals.
From Fresno a loop-line runs via (88 M.) Exeter to (141 M.) Famoso
(p. 565), where it rejoins the main line. On this line lies (20 M.) Sanger
Junction (Hotel), whence a tri-weekly stage runs to (45 M.) Millwood (through
return-fare from San Francisco $ 19.40). 3 M. to the S. of the latter lies the
General Grant Park, comprising 125 mammoth trees, including 'General Grant',
one of the largest Sequoias known (106 ft. in circumference at its base).
About 7 M. farther to the S. lies the Sequoia National Park (see below).
At (227 M.) Kingsburg (300 ft) we cross King's River by a trestle-
bridge. — 241 M. Goshen (285 ft.) is the junction of a line running
to the W. to (60 M.) Alcalde and the productive oil fields of Coalinga,
and of another running to the E. to (17 M.) Exeter, on the above-
mentioned loop-line from Fresno to Famoso.
On this line, 8 M. from Goshen, lies Visalia (p. 525), whence stages run
thrice weekly to (30 M.) Redstone Park, going on the next day to (23 M.)