Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Durango, Colorado: Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

The Million Dollar Highway is one of the most scenic drives in the nation; it makes a loop in a particularly scenic portion of the Rockies. Here's the good news -- you don't have to drive all of it.

The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad will take you in places that the road doesn't go, and the views are excellent in spots (like the one shown, it's a long drop to the river). The "narrow gauge" refers to the size of the track.

If you are considering this trip, here's a travel tip: only take the train one way. The coal-fired locomotive is a bit hot and sooty, and the return trip merely goes on the same track in the opposite direction. You can buy a ticket that will get you via train to Silverton in the morning, give you time to look around and eat lunch (it's a quaint little place that lives off tourism), and then take a bus back to Durango. You'll see some different views on the way back, and it's quicker.

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