circuit breaker tripping ?

Hello,
I have a circuit breaker (i think it's 15 amps, it's been a while since i actually looked at it) that trips within a second or so of closing. Apparently there is a short in one of the fixtures, lights, etc that this breaker feeds in the upstairs bedroom and hallway.
Is there any trick that will allow me to isolate where the short is without having to dig into all of them. With my luck, it would be the last one I checked. It's a hassle getting to some of them (example- light over stairway).
Thanks for any advice.
chuck allen
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Turn all the lights ON on that circuit, then determine the approximate mid point of the circuit and open that box, disconnect the hot wires and separate them, then try to reset the breaker. If the breaker resets, reconnect the wires then work upstream from that box, going half the distance from that box to the (approximate) end of the circuit. If it still trips work downstream from the midpoint box. Go half the distance each time. Probably a good idea to replace the breaker after you find the fault. Also keep in mind if the breaker resets the fault may have burned itself clear during all the testing, in which case reconnect everything and check each outlet for power using the same method. When tracing the circuit, just ask yourself how you would have ran the cable using the least amount of cable and that may be pretty close to how it was actually ran. Each time you open a box you'll get a better picture as to how the circuit was ran.
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This is Turtle.
trouble shooting is never easy.
Try this first. Cut off or unplug everything on the circuit and see if it will trip with nothing running. Then clamp a amp meter on the breaker and watch the amps as you turn stuff back on. it it trips and the amps don't surge up. it could be just the breaker it'self acting up. Start here.
TURTLE
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Thanks for the advice guys. I actually replaced the breaker already as the first step. I don't have a clamp-on ammeter so hopefully I can isolate by the 'cut in half method'.

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