Mines brought railroads into Colorado’s mountains, after transcontinental main lines had bypassed Colorado leaving Denver at the ends of branch lines. Denver & Rio Grande Railway intended to reach the Pacific Ocean by way of Mexico; a plan that the Santa Fe Railway thwarted. Instead D&RG built lines to mining districts all over the Rockies. Breathtaking scenery drew travelers from around the world. Remnants of this narrow-gauge network still survive
today in Colorado. Our Colorado Railroad Tour will visit many of these areas,
and the scenery’s as grand as ever.
Day 1 — Colorado Rail Museum
Meet your fellow travelers this morning for our orientation and introductions. We will then transfer to Golden where we will enjoy lunch at a local brewery. Afterwards we will take a short shuttle to the Colorado Railroad Museum where an introduction to Colorado’s railroad history will lay groundwork for the week. Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Day 2 — Georgetown Loop Railroad, Royal Gorge Railroad
Head to Silver Plume, Colorado, for the first of many scenic railway rides, the Georgetown Loop Railroad. Completed in 1884, the railroad connected the mining camps of Georgetown and Silver Plume, only two miles – but 600 vertical feet, apart. Abandoned in 1939, the line was restored to operation in 1975 by the state historical society of Colorado. Next, following a three-hour scenic drive, experience the stunning landscapes and 1,000-foot canyon cliffs of the Arkansas River above Canon City, Colorado, on the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. It began as part of the D&RG line to Leadville and Tennessee Pass. Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Day 3 — Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
After breakfast, drive through a region of Colorado rich in railroad history in Curecanti National Recreation Area. Cross the Continental Divide at Monarch Pass and travel through the irrigated farm and ranch lands of the Gunnison River valley that D&RG narrow-gauge trains served until 1955. Enjoy a visit to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, which was once part of the “Narrow Gauge Circle Route” and was established as a National Park in 1999 for its deep cultural history and natural beauty. Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Day 4 — Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
This morning’s leisurely 60-mile drive from Montrose to Silverton passes through (and stops to view) spectacular mountain scenery in a region known as “The Switzerland of America.” After exploring and enjoying lunch at the restaurant of your choice in Silverton, board the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad for an afternoon trip through the canyon of the Rio de las Animas to Durango, arriving in time for dinner.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Day 5 — Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad
An early drive to Chama, New Mexico, will arrive in time to see and photograph the narrow-gauge engine terminal and the wide variety of rolling stock in this hub of train operations. The day-long journey east from Chama will include an ascent of the long, steep grade to 10,020-foot Cumbres Pass and will traverse the rim of Toltec Gorge on the way to Antonito, Colorado. Today closes with a drive to picturesque Santa Fe, New Mexico, and our farewell dinner.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Day 6 — Departures from Santa Fe, NM
Have breakfast at your leisure this morning before catching the Sandia Shuttle for departures home are from Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ). Meals included: Breakfast
Holiday Inn Express, Golden – 1 night
Located a short distance from Golden, Colorado overlooking the Colorado Rockies. Relax after a day of exploration at the indoor heated pool and hot tub. The hotel features modern rooms and suites feature free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and microwaves, as well as minifridges and coffeemakers.
Silver Ridge Lodge, Salida – 1 night
Built in the mid 1960’s Silver Ridge Lodge is a wonderful throwback to the days of families and friends packing into their cars to explore and cruise this beautiful country. Our architecture takes you back in time – our nicely updated rooms and modern amenities give you a welcoming feeling and opportunity to relax in this wonderful mountain community.
Holiday Inn Express, Montrose – 1 night
This comfortable hotel is located on the western slope of Colorado. With friendly service and exceptional amenities, this hotel provides a carefree stay. The hotel offers perks such as an indoor salt pool with a 60 ft. lap lane, 2 whirlpools and a Fitness Center. Free Wi-Fi access lets you check email, while the cable TV helps you unwind. Each room now comes with a microwave and fridge.
Fairfield Inn, Durango – 1 night
This down-to-earth hotel is a 15-minute walk from seasonal steam train rides at the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad & Museum. Straightforward rooms offer free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and minifridges, as well as tea and coffeemakers. Other amenities include an indoor pool, a hot tub and a gym, plus a coin-operated laundry.
Inn on the Alameda, Santa Fe – 1 night
Nestled in the heart of Santa Fe only steps away from the historic Santa Fe Plaza and the Canyon Road galleries. This boutique hotel is tucked within colorful xeriscaped gardens and peaceful shaded courtyards behind cozy adobe walls. The hotel are well known for their for their ample continental breakfast. Your room features southwestern decor enhanced by local and regional artwork, handmade furnishings, in-room coffee-makers with organic coffee, and complimentary wireless internet.
Pricing & Inclusions
- Lodging as outlined in lodging section above based on double occupancy
- Meals as noted in itinerary above
- Snacks and beverages
- Train tickets and museum admissions for all included activities
- Commentary by rail expert
- Services of professional tour manager
- Ground transportation for all included events during the trip & porterage service
Trip Price Excludes:
- Pre & post tour travel
- Alcoholic beverages
- Gratuities for your BSA guides
Public Dates and Availability