Rio Grande News

    Posted Friday, October 10 2014 at 2117 h MDT
    This isn't exactly Rio Grande news, and there's no way I can even relate the two. However, if you're a narrow gauge fan, there's a crowdfunding campaign going on right now to help the Western Railway Preservation Society rebuild Westside Lumber Company's very unique caboose #3. They're about $1200 short of their goal right now. If you're inclined to contribute, remember they're a 501c3, so it's all tax-deductable. Please visit their donation page to give. Once restored, the caboose will run on the Sumpter Valley.

    More photos of the restoration work so far can be found on WRPS's website [here]. -

    Posted Monday, September 29 2014 at 1046 h MDT
    At some point between Monday, September 14, and Tuesday, September 22, the wooden smokebox door from the Emma Sweeney - the Hollywood reproduction of RGS 20 for "Ticket to Tomahawk" - was stolen from the fenced area in Durango's Santa Rita Park. The Durango Railroad Historic Society has been working to restore Emma for the past three years for display in the park.

    The thing has no scrap value, as it's made from wood, and has little value overall since it's both extremely unique and now widely known to be stolen property. However, the historic value is tremendous. As such, the DRHS would just like it returned, no questions asked.

    An article about the theft can be found in the Durango Herald. -

    Posted Sunday, August 24 2014 at 1056 h MDT
    I'd heard a few reports circulating lately that A&K had actually started in on the Towner Line, so I went out late yesterday afternoon to try to verify those and collect proof. I'm sad to say that the news is bad. They indeed have everything in place they need to scrap out the line - except STB permission for abandonment. In fact, there's at least one OFA on the table (Offer of Financial Assistance - basically a request to buy the line intact), and I've heard there may be a second.

    No need to let pesky legalities get in the way, however. (In fact, I'm sure V&S/A&K will argue they're not abandoning it, they're just borrowing the rail for an indefinite period and betting they don't have to put it back.) V&S brought in a string of empty rail carriers and SMNR 3518 - an M420 from a Canadian branch they ripped out in 2007. Those are sitting at NA Junction. The washouts near the Highway 96 crossing have been fixed. A&K crews have pulled most of the spikes and rail anchors starting at Arlington, CO, and working west as far as halfway between Sugar City and Ordway. There's a line of heavy machinery at Arlington, including a speed swing, backhoe with a magnet attached to the arm, a grader, and a front end loader.

    With the track structure is now unsuitable for anything except one last train to pull up the rails and all the machinery you'd need to scrap out the track in place, it's pretty much a done deal. The west end of the Towner Line is toast, due process be damned.

    Photos substantiating its current status have been posted [here]. -

    Posted Tuesday, July 29 2014 at 1122 h MDT
    Another ACS-64 is on its way. A post on Trainorders reports that AMTK 618 is at the interchange and should be on the Zephyr on Wednesday or Thursday out of California. That puts it across the former D&RGW on Thursday or Friday. I'll update this when it actually moves, but wanted to give everyone a heads up anyway. - NDHolmes

 Other Rio Grande Websites
  The most comprehensive D&RGW site out there
 Rio Grande Modeling & Historical Society
  The Rio Grande Modeling and Historical Society
  Kevin Morgan's D&RGW Site (formerly - Route and historical info, as well as photos
  An excellent site by a Mike B., a professional railroader and former D&RGW employee
 More Rio Grande Websites...
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 Recent Trip Reports
DRGW 463 Returns
   Posted: May 24, 2013
 After twelve years in storage and various states of restoration, D&RGW 463 returns to service on the Cumbres & Toltec for her 110th birthday year. - NDH
CRRM Goosefest 2012
   Posted: Dec 15, 2012
 For the first time in sixty years, five of the six remaining RGS Galloping Geese (plus the replica of RGS 1) are all in the same place. - NDH
Train Festival 2011
   Posted: Aug 9, 2011
 A week of chasing, riding, and photographing the trains of Train Festival 2011 in Rock Island, IL - NDH
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