Orient Branch Facts
From: Villa Grove, CO
To: Orient, CO
The Orient Branch was originally built in 1881 to connect Colorado Coal & Iron's Orient Mine with the newly constructed narrow gauge mainline at Mears Junction. This would allow iron ore (iron-rich limestone known as limonite) to be hauled from the Orient mine to the furnaces at Pueblo. By 1890, an extension of the line from Villa Grove to Alamosa turned the northern part of the route over Poncha Pass into part of the narrow gauge mainline known as the Valley Line. Everything to the east of Villa Grove became the new Orient Branch.
The line lasted until sometime between 1933 and 1940.
Orient Branch Timetable
|1888-1932||Third Division, Third District|
|1932-1949||D&RGW Alamosa Division Timetables, Subdivision 15-A|