8/09/2011

Royal Gorge, CO

So, one of the things that we wanted to do in Colorado was hit one of the numerous mountain trains....when I was a kid, my family and I rode the Cumbres and Toltec line, which was fantastic and I totally figured that our son would appreciate it.  Unfortunately, we're not going to be in that area until much later in the year (around October) so we wanted to make sure we could get on a train while we still had a chance.  Enter Canon City, CO, and the Royal Gorge.  So everyone probably knows about the Royal Gorge....white-water rafting, the highest suspension bridge, etc...but there's also an old train line that runs parallel to the river and has fantastic views of the river, the bridge and the gorge...I highly recommend it, and it won't break the bank, either!

The train station, still in use to purchase tickets and trinkets at the shop.

The current engines pulling the train...restored 50's era locomotives.

The view from the front open car just after starting.

Another view from the open car going around a bend -- look how close you are to the water!



A view of the bridge in the distance.

Another closer view from below.


The bridge from directly below -- remember, this photo is 1,000 feet below the bridge!

A photo of the bridge above, and the suspension bridge for the train as well -- at this point in the gorge, it is only 30 feet wide, and there was no where for the engineers at the turn of the century to run the line on, so they engineered (still in use today) these struts that suspend the train track actually above the water cantilevered off the sides of the gorge itself!

Lots and lots of rafters -- plenty of wild-life viewing!

Another thing we saw was fly fishermen and gold panners (shown above).

Beautiful backdrop at the end of the run.

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