The Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is one of the most
famous, photographed, and written-about tourist railroads in existence.
Running between Durango and Silverton, Colorado (hence the name!), it
carries passengers through spectacular scenery on its vintage trains.
Once the very end of the line for the Denver & Rio Grande (Western)
Railroad, the D&S is now an active excursion line, and a key component of
the local economy as well.I won't go into
much of the history or particulars of the line-- others have done that
extensively-- but I'd like to share some of my experiences and
photographs of the operation. Living only 50 miles from Durango gives
me regular opportunities to shoot
This page, part of my larger ActionRoad.net site, serves as a front door to a number of subsections pertaining to the D&S. Click on the thumbnail photos below to explore the various topics.
(Disclaimer: This is a railfan site, not an official site of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. This site has no official connection whatsoever with the D&SNGRR nor with American Heritage Railways.)
1/25/2017: Just an infobyte to mention that many of my more recent photos have been posted on Flickr. See the D&S albums there and other related subjects (e.g. C&TSRR). I have also fixed some of the broken internal links within this site.
10/14/2009: Diesel Loco status. A conversation with a RR employee explained that the D&S is down to two operational diesels, the Hot Shot 1 and No. 11. One other hulk remains on the property as a parts source. The other three were refurbished and sold; the proceeds from that transaction essentially paid for the ones they kept. The departed locomotives include "Big Al" (No. 7) and No. 9, both pictured on the Equipment page. I have photos of "Big Al" on July 4th of 2009, so the sale happened after that date. No word on who the buyer was.
In the process of the refurbishments, No. 11 was given a new, weightier deck which gives it more grip on the rails (tractive effort). My source indicated that the unit always had plenty of power, but this additional weight will reduce slipping enough to better utilize the horsepower. Considering this unit was been operational since 2007, I don't know exactly when this deck enhancement occurred.
Hot Shot 1 was kept in Silverton over the summer, mainly to protect the fire train.
8/22/2009: Tall Timber Resort cars. New for 2009, a pair of coaches have been reworked and painted red, in dedicated service to the Tall Timbers Resort. Customers pay a premium to ride on these cars as far as the resort, where they disembark and ride the zipline between the trees. Photos on the Equipment page. See the D&S website for details and costs, which are considerable...
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© 2005, James R. Griffin. All rights reserved.