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The Three-Day Trip Home from Antonito 9/5-7/2021

by Chris Guenzler

After Elizabeth and I visited the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad gift shop for magnets, Greg drove us west over Cumbres Pass on Highway 17 to Chama where we stopped at Speedway Gas to fill the car with petrol. He drove us the rest of the way to Farmington where we checked into the Quality Inn. I worked on the story while Elizabeth checked e-mail and other things and we called it an early night.

9/6/2021 Elizabeth and I woke up then we went across the road to the Village Inn where I had French Toast with bacon and sausage and Elizabeth had her Denver Omelette with orange juice. I worked on the story a bit more before we checked out and Elizabeth started the drive to Kingman. We took US Highway 64 to Shiprock then US Highway 421 to Gallup, where I finshed the Rio Grande Southern 20 story, before turning west onto Interstate 40. We stopped at The Habit in Flagstaff but they did not have my usaul Tenderloin Steak as they had run out of it, so I chose a chicken sandwich instead, as well as a chocolate shake. We escaped Flagstaff using my excellent directions and headed to Williams so Greg could use the facilities. While he did this we looked around the station.

Manitou and Pikes Peak Cog Railway 0-4-2T 4 on temporary display in Williams.

The emblem of that amazing cog railway.

The builder's plate of this unique steam engine.

Grand Canyon Railway Harriman Coach 2089 in new blue paint.

Grand Canyon Railway Harriman Coach 2104 in new blue paint. We left Williams and headed to Ash Fork then west.

Views of the original Santa Fe Railroad right-of-way from Ash Fork to Crookton prior to the building of the Crookton Cutoff line relocation in the early 1960s. We drove to Kingman without seeing a single train and checked into the Best Western Plus. I put up the Rio Grande Southern 20 trip story after Elizabeth proofed it then we went to Jersey Mikes for dinner before returning to the hotel for the night.

9/7/2021 On this last day of the trip, Elizabeth and I woke up in Kingman and after doing our Internet, we drover over to the Black Bear Diner where I had French Toast and bacon and Elizabeth had Stuffed French Toast. Greg and Marty met us and we started the trip back home with Elizabeth driving. First stop was in Kingman for a steam engine we both had already had pictures of.

Santa Fe 4-8-4 3759 built in 1928 by Baldwin Locomotive Company.

Santa Fe caboose 999520 originally 2122 built in 1942.

The sign about the steam engine. We left Kingman and filled up the car with petrol at US 93 Love Gas station. We went west and got lucky with a train on the BNSF bridge over the Colorado River.

BNSF 7950 West with a Santa Fe emblem below it on the bridge at Topock, Arizona.

BNSF 7950 West crossing the state line.

The Welcome to California sign. Elizabeth drove us to US 95 North west of Needles and we took Goffs Road to the west.

BNSF 6546 East at Homer. We continued west to Goffs.

BNSF SD70MAC 9795 at West Goffs. We returned to Interstate 40 and she drove us to the rest area east of Newberry Springs. Greg then drove us south on Interstate 15 to CA 91 to CA 55 then drove us to our apartment. We unloaded our luggage then said our goodbyes to our friends.

This had been a fantastic trip with us visiting both old and new places and had a good time with new friends. Our experiences riding the steam engines over the past three weeks were excellent and the Milwaukee NRHS convention was an A+ experience. The photo charters were both outstanding with me making new friends at all events. A special thank you to my lovely wife, also known as the British Spy, for finding and making all the hotel reservations for both us and Greg and Marty, as well as the various restaurants we ate at throughout our multi-state journey. The four of us really enjoyed everything and the planning that Elizabeth and I had done was much appreciated.