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My take. Top is probably transmission at a higer voltage, note the wider spacing, larger cross arm, to a substation. I agree next two cross arms down are probably 4160/2400 volt distribution. We still have a few 4160 systems here in Western PA, notably Ellwood City. Small cross arm with only two telephone wires could be a fire alarm circuit that was strung though a lot of towns wired directly to the fire station(s). Last two, I count 16 insulators per cross arm, would be telephone. Not sure how you would climb through or above the telephone like that, never had to do it. Unusually tall electric poles for the time period.

I keep looking. There are three pole lines, two on this side of the tracks, note the smaller poles along side and behind the larger electric/telephone combination poles. I'm thinking these smallest poles are railroad and that the large high telephone poles, far side of track would be AT&T transmission phone lines.
Trees would appear to be southern California, my guess Southern Pacific RR.
I think your right about there being 3 different sets of poles there.

I was going by insulator size on top so it may be sub-transmission?

How do you climb up thru it?
Well sunny LOL you put a hose on 2 conductors and you shove yourself up and thru.

We had several places where there was Sub-transmission on top(69KV) with 2-12KV circuits on the bottom . Of coarse we'd de-energize(turn off) the 69KV but the 12kv circuits would stay hot. On 12 KV each hot wire is 7200 volts.

We'd climb the pole which for this configuration was a minimum of 65 feet(Which would explain the tall poles in the picture) and hang a little 2x2 foot insulating platform called a "Hot Board" . It has a chain that goes around the pole to hold it in place.

You stand on the hot board and wearing insulating sleeves which the best way to describe them is that they look like a piece of inner tube you slide your arm into that goes from your wrist to your shoulder and are held in place by a set of straps and wearing rubber gloves ,you put a rubber tube called a "hose" on each of the 2 wires you need to climb thru and yes these 2 wires are energized at 7200 volts . Once you got your wires hosed you climb to the top and do your work.

Makes for a very tiring day believe me

On 4160 volt the old guys wouldn't even hang a hot board . Those jokers would hose the wire off the pole with just leather gloves on!!!

Thank you thank you thank you for safety rules.
Today the power company would ---- a peach seed if they saw you doing any of this . Now they re-route the power so most of the customers still have service ,turn that section of the line off so at least you are climbing up thru dead wire.

Oh and power lineman's pet peeve. All poles aren't telephone poles only the ones that belong to the telephone co are.
I guess the world see's it like the 911 dispatchers.
All the poles are telephone poles and all the wires belong to the power company.
Cause it don't matter if it's power, cable TV or telephone.
If the wire is laying on the ground the power company is the one that's getting the 911 call

The train in that photo is Santa Fe. Note the recessed side sills on the cars, it's a Santa Fe design.

SP's cars of that period would not have these side sills showing and the cars would have had rounded roofs as well.

Also, don't forget Western Union's telegraph wires!

Ed Bommer
I am pretty sure that is in the San Fernando Valley (Southern California). That right of way was supposed to be changed to a light rail project and the area residents complained so loudly they made it a dedicated two way bus lane (Orange Line) with pedestrian bike path. It runs from the North Hollywood Red Line (underground light rail) to Warner Center (Woodland Hills). That area is most likely a stretch near Tarzana/Reseda. It runs along Oxnard and Topham Streets in that area.

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