Posted by: baworldtraveler | September 21, 2011

Enjoy Autumn Views Riding the Durango-Silverton Narrow Guage Railroad

A client of mine was a railroad buff. He had this exquisite photo of an old train prominently displayed on the wall of his office. One day, I asked him about the photo. That was the day I learned about the Durango-Silverton Narrow Guage Railroad, a ride that starts in Durango, Colorado and climbs the beautiful SanJuan mountains to Silverton. 

I decided that I would one day experience that unique ride through the San Juan Mountains , on that narrow guage railroad. I found myself on a vacation exploring the southwest a number of years later and took a quick detour to Durango. The ride did not disappoint. It was autumn. The weather couldn’t have been better – clear blue sky and nothing but sunshine. The ride took about 3 hours each way. I rode in the car that had the open view. I had enough time to walk around Silverton, catch lunch and then head back to Durango.

The vista’s were breathtaking, especially watching from the back of the train, as the front of the train snaked its way through the mountainside, riding its edges and crossing bridges that connected mountainsides. See a good photo by clicking here.

Just last year, I met someone whe said she was going to take the Durango & Silverton train ride that weekend. She did and reported back that it was still as good an experience as when I had gone.

Here is my only warning  and piece of advice for those who take the ride. If you are going to spend any time in the open car – be sure to have your glasses or sunglasses on to protect yourself from the cinders, or ashes that will be in the air. Without glasses, you will not be able to enjoy the ride in the open car – you will be too busy wiping the specs of “grit” from your eyes. I passes this advice on to my friend who heeded my warning and was prepared when she took the ride.

Take the ride, you will not be disappointed.

Link to wikipedia.

For your convenience, I have added links below from Durango & Silverton’s web site.  

Watch the video “Autumn in the San Juans” (1st video),   “A Dirty Job” (4th video) and “Train and Trail” (5th video) by clicking  here.

To read more about the history of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Guage Railroad, click here.

To read some frequently asked questions, click here.

For information on the Durango area, click here.

From the Durango & Silverton website:

 ” We operate out of our original 1882 depot located at 479 Main Avenue, Durango, CO 81301

  The D&SNGRR is history made up of original equipment, maintained to perfection, operated and kept up by people today using skills long lost to ordinary endeavors. Our history protects and preserves the very human character that made our country great. On our railroad, you will experience Colorado at its best…wildlife, waterfalls, majestic peaks, all from the view of an 1880s train. You will see places you can get to only by foot or train. You will experience first-hand why the D&SNGRR was voted “One of the World’s Top Ten Most Exciting Train Rides” by the Society of American Travel Writers in 2009. The most important part of our mission is you. It is to give you an experience you will never forget. Riding the D&SNGRR you are now a part of history. You are now an 1882 railroader. Welcome Aboard! We’re glad you’re here.  –Allen & Carol Harper

 The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad winds through spectacular & breathtaking canyons in the remote wilderness of the two-million acre San Juan National Forest for an unforgettable year-round adventure. Experience the adventure of traveling by a coal-fired, steam-powered locomotive on the same tracks miners, cowboys and settlers of the Old West took over a century ago. Relive history with the sights and sounds of yesteryear for a truly spectacular journey on board the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.”

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