The California High-Speed Rail Authority prefers to send a bullet train through Pacheco Pass, right past the southern border of our beloved Henry Coe State Park.

The Pacheco route would link the Bay Area to a 700-mile, statewide, high-speed rail system, with trains traveling at speeds in excess of 200 mph from Sacramento to San Diego. The trains would have the capability to whisk travelers from the Transbay Terminal in downtown San Francisco to Union Station in Los Angeles in 2 1/2 hours.

The proposed system would cost about $40 billion to build, but the project has no money – or promise of funding – for construction. A $10 billion bond measure, on the November 2008 ballot, would start construction of the first phase: from San Francisco to Anaheim.

The Pacheco route was seen by supporters as the speediest, most-direct route to Los Angeles. It would sweep into the Bay Area over the pass between the Los Banos area (Merced County) and Gilroy, head north to San Jose, then up the Peninsula along the Caltrain right-of-way to San Francisco.

Of course they’ve been fixing to get ready to do something with this high-speed rail proposal for over 30 years and the costs keep climbing. Fortunately, this page describing a route through Henry Coe’s Orestimba Wilderness is two years out of date. Looks like the actual route will parallel the highway going through the pass.