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Sunday November 18th 2018

High Noon | 1952

High Noon filming location: St Joseph's Church, Tuolumne City, California
High Noon filming location: Sheriff Will Kane appeals for help: St Joseph's Church, Tuolumne City, California

Sheriff Will Kane (Gary Cooper) stands alone against the baddies, but fortunately wife Amy (Grace Kelly) does not forsake him in Fred Zinnemann’s classic film.

The opening scenes, under the credits, were shot at the Iverson Ranch near Chatsworth, north of Los Angeles, but the fictitious ‘Hadleyville, New Mexico’ was to have been played by the Main Street of Columbia State Historic Park, a preserved goldrush town in northern California.

By the time the crew arrived, however, spring had arrived and the bleak, bare main street of Columbia had burst into green leafiness.

High Noon filming location: Columbia State Park, California
High Noon filming location: too lush and green for filming: Columbia State Park, California

In the end, they used the Western Street at, by coincidence, Columbia Pictures in Burbank.

Some of the real mining town remains in the picture, though. You can't miss the white picket fence of Sam Fuller (Harry Morgan), the cowardly friend who sends his wife to claim he's not at home. This is the Wilson House on Main Street, a few doors away from Visitor Center, and the last privately-owned home in the town.

High Noon filming location: Wilson House, Main Street, Columbia State Park, California
High Noon filming location: the home of cowardly Sam Fuller: Wilson House, Main Street, Columbia State Park, California

Columbia State Historic Park is just east of the town of Columbia, 45 miles northeast of Modesto in Tuolumne County.

A few miles southeast of Columbia you'll find the church where Kane pleads for special deputies to face Frank Miller. It's St Joseph's Catholic Church, Gardner Avenue at Tuolumne Road in Tuolumne City, not a city at all but a tiny town just off Route 108.

High Noon filming location:  the Sierra Railroad, Oakdale, California
High Noon filming location: Railtown 1897, Jamestown, California

The railroad was the old Sierra Railroad in central California. A stretch of the line lives on as Railtown 1897 State Historic Park at Jamestown, a few miles south of Columbia.

Dubbed the ‘Movie Railroad’ from its appearance in countless films and TV shows, including Clint Eastwood's 1985 Pale Rider, Railtown 1897 is open Thursday to Monday.

From April to October, you can take a 6-mile, 40-minute round-trip train ride every hour between 11am and 3pm.

For the movie, the railroad station was built alongside a watertower at Warnerville, about 15 miles to the southwest.