Durango & Silverton and Cumbres & Toltec next week

sd70mac Jun 13, 2006

  1. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Late next week I will be in Durango Colorado having driven from Maryland and will meet up with my mother who will have driven up from Arizona. We're going to ride the Durango & Silverton and then scoot over to Antonito where we will take the C&T to Chama, stay the night, then return to Antonito.

    Since I am hoping to line up some good photos with my Canon S2 IS while I am out there, what advice could folks give me regarding the best places to get photos of trains and other equipment as well as the scenery and maybe some wildlife? Photos taken on this trip will probably be posted to my webshots gallery by the middle of July since I will still be on the road about another 2 weeks following the rail adventure. Any other recommendations on things to see and do while there will be greatly appreciated.

    We will be staying at the Durango East KOA while at Durango, Narrow Gauge Inn at Antonito and The Hotel & Shops at Chama.

    Thank you!
     
  2. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Railfanning D&RGW - Let's talk Colorado RR!!!!!!!

    [​IMG] - Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad

    [​IMG] - Durango & Silverton

    [​IMG] - Cimarron Station

    [​IMG] - Misc.
     
  3. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Thank you for the links! It is going to take me quite some time to look through all of your albums. They are definitely giving me a bit of a head start on what to expect.
     
  4. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Give me some time/travel limits...

    Question, do you already have your tickets? Which direction on the Cumbres & Toltec do you plan to travel?

    More Colorado RR Places to enjoy:

    [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG]
     
  5. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    More yet...

    [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG]
     
  6. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Still more coming...

    [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG]
     
  7. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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  8. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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  9. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    You're posting a lot of great stuff, but a lot of it is way out of my range. I'm looking for things in the vicinity of Durango and Antonito. Thanks for the photos, I am going to look through them. The Durango pictures were getting my hopes up until I realized they were photo specials. I doubt I will get to watch the loco on the turntable like you did or go into the shops.
     
  10. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    If you have time, you should definitely make the Moffat Route a stop on your list. For a taste of what's to be seen there:
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/577
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/628
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/629
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/630
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/631
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/632
    http://www.trainboard.com/railimages/showgallery.php/cat/633

    A teaser:
    Tunnel 5, and Amtrak #5:

    [​IMG]

    Also, while you're out, you should take the time to check out the new tourist line San Luis & Rio Grande over LaVeta Pass. If you drive west from Walsenburg, you'll go right over LaVeta Pass. Several places on the west slop have beautiful curves to shoot from the hiway.
    Alamosa has a nice depot, IIRC, and Monte Vista has some stuff storred in a back lot that you might find interesting. Monte Vista also have a city park with an intact, and clean looking D&RGW no-trespassing sign... Could you get a shot of it for me?
    Hading west from MV, South Fork is where the road takes off fromt he track for Wolf Creek Pass. What a view form the top!!
    South Fork also has some stuff along the road,a nd a water tank too.
    There's plenty of original D&RGW-style mileposts alongt he line too.
    If you head up to Denver to see the Moffat Line, you'll pass near the Joint Line as well. Lots of neat places to shoot near Palmer Lake, Monument Hill, etc.
    If you decide to chase ghosts, take US 24 over Tennessee Pass....
     
  11. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Moffat Route is much too far away. I am going to be mainly between Durango and Antonito.

    I will be headed through Walsenburg on my way out of the area, I will keep my eye out while going through there. The tourist line put information online much too late for me to include it in my plans - and I could have if they had done so. But the ugly locomotives. Ugh. If you're going to get those have the decency to cut the nose off and make it look nice.

    I will keep an eye out for the Alamosa depot.

    I should be able to stop at Monte Vista as I will have to pass through there going to Antonito. Can you give me an approximate intersection of where to look for the sign? I will keep an eye out around South Fork as well.

    Looking on the web for Monte Vista I see there's a wildlife refuge there, I may try to swing through there to see if I can get some critter shots.

    Great info! Thank you! BTW, I have ridden the Zephyer both ways. I've been on all the Western long distance trains and the scenery west of Denver is my favorite.
     
  12. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    I have taken the Cal Zephyr as well, it is a ride never forgotten. If the scenery abord the train is great, imagine how nice it is railfanning that area!!:w20z6q:
     
  13. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Hemi: Excellent. I will keep an eye out for that stuff. I looked over the maps again and found that the original route did not call for passing through Monte Vista, but if I am on or ahead of schedule it looks like I can detour through the town. South Fork is on the route and I will keep an eye out for it, as well. These look like good leg stretching spots.

    One of the things I remember the most about the Zephyr was that it was warm in Denver, but as we went into the mountains the snow was quite deep and I sat in the lower level of a lounge car and listened to the snow scraping against the edges of the car. This was many years ago now and I am looking forward to doing it again. Perhaps Zephyr out, Coast Starlight North and Empire Builder back East
     
  14. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    I knew I was posting more than one can do in a single trip but I wasn't 100% certain on how you would get to and out of your primary hotel stays so I tought I would post several things RR related around the state.

    One thing I would look at doing is to try to get on the RIGHT SIDE of the C&T when heading north out of Chama. and most of the best photographs will be from Chama to Cumbres Pass. When not on the train there are several spots you might be able to catch the train between Chama and about Los Pinos Tank with the best catching the North bound train out of Chama climbing up Windy Point. THis is where you have the best chance to catch a Double Header.

    [​IMG]
    Once the Northbound train reaches Cumbres pass they will drop down to a single engine and the other will turn around at the Wye and go back to Chama.
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Trip Map to the CUMBRES & TOLTEC SCENIC RAILROAD

    [​IMG] - [​IMG] - [​IMG]
    Also, Check out my topic: Railfanning Colorado {Tons of Photos/Video!!!!!!!}

    The topic is still in progress and is a play by play of my recent trip. I will post some highlights here to help point out some speical shots you might want to catch along the route.​
     
  16. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Outstanding info! This is exactly the kind of thing I am looking for. Thank you!
     
  17. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    I will check it out. Thanks!
     
  18. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Major RR Sites along the C&T - Starting with Chama

    There is a ton of things to see in the Chama Yard so make sure you give yourself time to walk around and take a ton of photographs.

    Once you pull out of Chama, the first thing you will see is the Chama River Bridge. If you are out in the "Open Car" you will see it coming from the RIGHT side.
    [​IMG]

    The next thing you will pass is what remains of an old Moive Set which the Water Tank will be on the RIGHT side as you pass
    [​IMG]
    1991 - Brotherhood of the Gun (TV movie)
    1988 - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    1988 - Where the Hell’s That Gold (TV movie)
    1980 - Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
    1980 - Legend of the Lone Ranger
    1978 - Butch and Sundance: The Early Years
    1975 - Missouri Breaks
    1974 - Bite the Bullet
    1974 - The Fortune
    1972 - Showdown
    1970 - Shootout
    1968 - The Good Guys and the Bad Guys

    You will next approach Lobato Trestle whcih is best seen from the LEFT side and since the bridge can't take both engines one will cross alone and then the other will follow.

    [​IMG]

    If again you are in to back Open Car, you will also get a good shot of the train crossing the Lobato Trestle as well.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    While in Durango, stop in at the gift shop, and pick up the souvenier book 'Smoke & Cinders' IIRC. It is the mile-for-mile guide to the D&S. I have the book, very informative. The open-air car at the tail of the D&S fills fast, get onboard fast...
    If my calculations are correct, you want to be in the RH side of the car, looking toward the front of the train. Much of the best scenery and the hi-line re viewed best from the RH side.
     
  20. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Keep a watch out for the Speeder that will be follwoing behind and some good shots will also be behind you as well.

    [​IMG]

    Keep an eye out for the Phone Booths along the route

    [​IMG]

    Next is the Cresco Tank which will be on the LEFT side and you will know it is coming by the Cresco Siding that will be on the RIGHT Side. I have not seen anything on this siding and the Water Tank is at the far end of the siding.

    [​IMG]

    You will now see Windy Point from the RIGHT side of the train and make sure you have a good spot for awile now on this side if you can.

    [​IMG]
     

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