DRGW History and Information  

  Trip Report: D&S Opening Weekend 2009 - Chapter 2
  Presidential Photo Special II
Friday, 1-May-2009, from Silverton to Durango
  From: D&S Opening Weekend 2009 Dates: May 3, 2009 Author: Nathan Holmes


Photo 24
While the train was in the station, I took a few minutes to go see the old Silverton Northern enginehouse. Here's looking down the barrel of K-37 493, stored on the loop track at Silverton, with the SN enginehouse visible just above and to the right.
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Photo 25
Thanks to the efforts of the San Juan County Historical Society and the Durango Railroad Historical Society, the old Silverton Northern enginehouse is the new home for D&RGW 315.
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   3 - D&S Opening Day
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Photo 26
The old SN main ran to the left of the enginehouse, with tracks coming off into the two bays. Later this summer, rails will once again reappear here, as a grant from the Colorado Historical Society (and materials from the Galloping Goose Historical Society) will enable the two groups to rebuild a connection from the enginehouse to the D&S mainline.
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Photo 27
Looking north up Cement Street, standing approximately on the Silverton Northern grade. Tracks will reappear here this summer, assuming all goes well.
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Photo 28
With the train wyed, the crew backs towards the depot to load us all up again.
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Photo 29
The engineer does a bit of lubrication while waiting for the water to blow out of the air reservoir behind him.
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Photo 30
Okay, everybody back on board!
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Photo 31
Stepping out over the raging Animas River just south of Silverton. While water levels really aren't all that high, they're higher than I'm used to, since I'm typically up here late in the season when the flow is down to a trickle.
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Photo 32
As usual, I'm indecisive. Here's a bonus Animas bridge shot.
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Photo 33
Taking on "fake water" at Needleton. Of course Needleton tank has been dry since it was replaced with a tank car tank in 1973, but the real tank is much more photogenic.
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Photo 34
Another view of the Needleton water stop.
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Photo 35
473 charges south in good light at Bitter Root Mine with the Needle Mountains in the background.
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Photo 36
A small blow-down before taking off from Bitter Root
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Photo 37
At Tall Timber, we find a previously unknown red car. Turns out this is one of the railroad's new projects - a pair of cars indefinitely leased to the Tall Timber resort and converted into premium transportation for their soaring guests.
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Photo 38
A little more mountain-goating than usual resulted in this high angle shot of the special on the High Line. (Thanks to the other Nathan and Daren for finding this spot...)
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Photo 39
Sitting on the High Line, after crew shots, waiting to pull ahead and load everyone back up.
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Photo 40
Conductor Rich Millard calls everybody back from the run-by, and is probably wishing we'd all hurry the heck up. It's been a long day, with the crew pushing 10 hours on duty at this point and at least an hour yet to go.
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Photo 41
At Rockwood, William and I got off the train with Nathan Zachman in order to chase the train back into Durango. We just barely made it to the Shalona crossing ahead of 473 (and at least two of us exited NZ's Tahoe while it was still moving).
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Photo 42
Riding back to Durango in style on the back of the Nomad.
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Photo 43
473 crosses the Hermosa bridge in rapidly-failing evening light
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Photo 44
Rounding one of the few corners between Hermosa and the north end of Durango
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Photo 45
Highballin' out of Home Ranch
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Photo 46
And heading into north Durango, passing over the two newly-installed switches that will be used to construct a new wye at this location.
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Photo 47
Back in Durango, crossing over the Animas just about a mile out of the yard.
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Photo 48
Today's train crew (from left to right) - Mike May, Fireman; Bill Colley, Engineer; Rich Millard, Conductor; Mike Nichols, Brakeman; George Swift, Brakeman.
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Photo 49
Today's car attendants (from left to right) - Dot Bodiroga from the Cinco Animas, Theresa Cashio from the Alamosa, Sally Haynes from the San Juan, and J Leigh Mestas from the Nomad.
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Photo 50
And last but not least, the volunteer guides (from left to right) - Gary Miller, Charlotte Miller, Yvonne Lashmett (D&S event coordinator), Dennis Berkey, and Kenny Smith-Olin.
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Creative Commons License This work is copyright 2009 by Nathan D. Holmes (maverick@drgw.net), but licensed under a Creative Commons License. I encourage others to consider CC or other Open Content-style licensing of their original works.

All photographs in this trip report were taken with a Canon EOS 40D using either a Canon 24-105mm F4 L IS/USM, Sigma 18-50mm, or a Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6L IS/USM.