Riding this train was an amazing adventure! My Dad was there (and this adventure was all thanks to him! For which we are very grateful!), and Mike of course, and Butterfly, Little Man and Flower. The kids loved it! Little Man was glued to the window for the entire six hours - absolutely glued. He couldn't get enough! Flower was a little hesitant, so she pretty much sat on my lap the entire train ride, she didn't even want to sit with Daddy or GrandDad. Butterfly had a great time and was even brave enough to go out onto the observation car!
Before we got on the train, we walked up to check out the steam engine - it was very impressive! The engineer actually let Mike, Dad and the kids climb into the engine (although not all at once!) and see how things run. It was really neat!
Butterfly and Little Man were so excited they could hardly contain their excitement - they were jumping up and down and asking about a million times when it was time to get on the train.
Finally, the moment arrived when we could board! We all climbed into the parlor class car where we had our tickets and found our table and chairs. It was really nice- very spacious.
The train ride itself was really neat. I was really surprised at slow the train was, I can totally see how a person could gallop up to a moving steam train going full speed and jump aboard - it's about as fast as a horse gallops, if that.
The sounds of the steam whistle was incredible - eerily beautiful, especially when it was echoing off the mountainous rocks and passes. It's also much louder in person that in the movies - hearing it the movies just can't compare. Every time the whistle blew, steam from the locomotive would shoot into the atmosphere in a giant column of puffing black smoke. Sometimes white steam would come out from the sides of the engine, which was called blowing the boiler or clearing the boiler. Very neat.
|Clearing the boiler|
We stopped halfway through at Osier, Colorado, to eat a wonderful lunch. We all had turkey and stuffing with mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, roll and a choice of dessert. (There was also meatloaf with mac n cheese to choose from.)
All in all it was one amazing trip - memories to last a lifetime. If you are interested in riding this amazing train for yourself, check out the website of the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad. I highly, highly recommend it! :D