Leaving Silverton behind. Pouring out a nice, dark plume, D&RGW K-37 #493 heads south across the Animas Timber Bridge just south of Silverton, CO at Milepost 495.25, beginning her 45 mile journey back to Durango, this time with an express passenger train of "Grande Gold" cars. Just to the left of the train, you can see the remains of one of many mining operations which dot the landscape around this very rustic town. Getting this 10AM shot is virtually impossible without a charter which spends the night in Silverton, as none of the regular passenger trains will even reach Silverton until nearly noontime and none will head south until early afternoon. Charters looking to photograph this location will need to time their departure carefully, waiting long enough for the morning sun to ascend over the tall mountains to the east of town, but still leaving sufficient time to reach Elk Park, where they can meet and pass Train 461, the first of the daily passenger trains from Durango.
The Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad and the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad are all that remains of the legendary Denver & Rio Grande Western narrow gauge system. Here you'll find some of my favorites from these two beautiful railways.