Desert Pearl Inn

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About the Inn's Trestlewood
Look around you... The beautiful wood used throughout Desert Pearl Inn is old-growth Douglas fir and redwood reclaimed from the historic Lucin Cutoff railroad trestle that once spanned the north end of the Great Salt Lake. The Great Salt Lake had always been a major obstacle to the railroads. It was no wonder then that a cutoff across the lake became the dream and scheme of William Hood, chief engineer of the Southern Pacific Railroad system and owner of the old Central Pacific. Hood dreamed of crossing the lake as far back as the 1860s, but there was neither financing nor traffic to warrant such an expenditure. Most likely, there was not the engineering faith to tackle such a project, so the line was built up through the hills at the north end of the lake. When Edward H. Harriman assumed control of the railroad, Hood found a man who sympathized with and believed in his plans, and more importantly, was willing to provide money for the project. The north end of the Great Salt Lake is the site of the Golden Spike, the final meeting place of the trans-continental railroad. It is also the place where, in 1901, the Southern Pacific began construction of the Lucin Cutoff, a line to run from Ogden straight over the lake on a trestle nearly twelve miles long, then over the desert flats (one hundred and two miles in all) to Lucin where it rejoined the old road.

On September 18, 1904, the cutoff was opened and the new line carried its first train traffic. The twelve miles of wood trestle were an engineering marvel. Building it took 3,000 men more than three grueling years working in extreme summer heat and freezing winter cold. Forty-three miles of slow, dangerous grades and curves through the mountains were eliminated with the opening of this straight new route. By 1959, traffic ceased on the line and in March of 1993, trestlewood salvaging began. It is from this old-growth fir and redwood cut in Oregon, Texas, and Michigan, and virtually unobtainable today, that the door and window frames, the upper decks, the soffits, the interior and exterior beams, the trellis, and the beautifully-milled cabinetry and flooring of the Desert Pearl Inn have been crafted.

Our use of trestlewood helps to conserve the earth's limited natural resources and provides an aesthetic, intriguing addition to the Inn.

Please, enjoy!

Photos courtesy of Cannon Structures. (More about reclaimed trestlewood.)