Full steam ahead: These 4 Colorado Rail Routes are Right on Track
It’s no secret that train travel has been on the rise for some time. It’s sustainable, offers breathtaking views of destinations, and provides a different way of seeing the world. Colorado is well known for its scenic rail routes which date back centuries. In celebration of Rocky Mountaineer’s new Rockies to the Red Rocks route beginning on16 April, which takes passengers from Denver to Moab, Utah, via Glenwood Springs, take a look at four more Colorado rail routes that are guaranteed to impress.
Said to be one of the most beautiful train trips in North America, the California Zephyr is a daily Amtrak train which starts and ends in Chicago or San Francisco, with six stops in Colorado between Fort Morgan, Denver, Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction. The high speed tour offers comfort and convenience, whilst coursing through the plains of Denver and soaring across the Rockies. Three course dinners are included.
Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad
Best known for its appearance in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), the Toltec is a National Historic Landmark on wheels. Steaming 64 miles over the Rocky Mountains and elevated cliffs, experience the confined Toltec Gorge, over 10,000 feet of Cumbres Pass, and endless views of evergreen forests, not to mention the 100-mile views in every direction. Starting and ending in Antonito or Chama New Mexico, travellers have a choice to sit in the Victorian elegance of the Parlor Car, the newly restored Deluxe Car or the budget friendly Coach Car which all come with a delicious buffet lunch. The C&T runs several special trains throughout the year including moonlight dinner runs and a kids express, the Cinder Bear Express. The season begins in May and runs until October.
Georgetown Loop Railroad
Connecting the mining towns of Georgetown and Silver Plume, the Georgetown Loop Railroad train runs for two miles through steep, narrow canyons and is famous for its historic narrow gauge roads. The engineering marvel extended over the Devil’s Gate Bridge and winds through a scenic Rocky Mountain pathway. The railroad’s 1800s builders constructed tracks that corkscrewed up more than 600 ft in elevation on four bridges. Passengers can choose to opt into a tour of the historic Lebanon Silver Mine in conjunction with their ride.
Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
This coal fired, steam powered locomotive offers a safe haven for backpackers, day hikers and fishermen as they can get on and off the train mid-route to access the San Juan National Forest and Weminuche Wilderness. Beginning and ending in either Durango or Silverton, the railway runs 200 feet above the Animas River and features views of majestic peaks as it passes through the western wilderness and charming canyons of the Animas Gorge and San Juan National Forest.