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NRHS 2016 Convention Leadville, Colorado & Southern Railroad Trip Part 2 7/23/2016

by Chris Guenzler

Our train continued to climb the grade towards Climax.

Looking back to Mt. Elbert.

Through the forest we go up the grade.

Interesting rock formations along our route.

Mountain peaks along our route.

The train taking a curve.

Another mountain peak along our route.

Zip lining along and over our route.

The train was nearing the French Gulch water tower.

The French Gulch water tower.

We are climbing the grade towards Climax.

Great views abound on this route.

I am amazed how trees can grow anywhere on a mountain.

More of the forest along our route today.

A railroad building on the west side of the grade.

More trees!

Another fantastic view.

A pond on the east side of the railroad.

Still climbing the grade getting ever closer to Climax.

Our first view of the Climax Molybdenum Mine.

Looking down at the Arkansas River.

Two views of the Climax Molybdenum Mine.

Looking ahead of the train up the tracks.

A building down in the valley.

The Climax Molybdenum Mine.

The highway that will return us to Denver after the trip.

Sheep Mountain.

We are still climbing the grade.

The highway makes a big turn to get over Fremont Pass and the Continental Divide.

The train is still rolling north at this point.

The Climax Molybdenum Mine.

Our train is still moving higher up the grade.

The Wortman Mine.

Our train is nearing the end of track.

The train crosses the Arkansas River very near its headwaters.

Mt. Democrat.

The train crosses the Arkansas River.

The Sleeping Indian and Mount Arkansas.

The train has reached our furthest point from Leadville as you can see the barrier across the tracks ahead of the train. This is only the fourth time that a train has traveled this far on the railroad.

View of the highway over Fremont Pass.

More views of the Sleeping Indian. On the way back Steve Barry and I met with the train crew about the photo runby at the French Gulch water tower. We would have two photo runbys as we discussed the safety procedures for making it a safe experience for the passengers. Steve would take the lower photo line at the first runby and I would take the upper level for both runbys. No passenger could move until the train backed up. After the first runby and the train had backed up, then people could switch either to the upper or lower or stay on the same level. Steve announced it over the train's PA system and when we arrived, I was second off and headed to my appointed spot.

Our passengers getting off the train and I was at the east end of the group making sure no one went down the tracks until the train was done backing up. Our conductor and I would lead the passengers to the upper photo locations.

Our first photo runby at the French Gulch water tower. I moved to another location.

The lower photo line.

The track at the French Gulch water tower.

The back up move before the final runby.

The upper photo lines.

The last and final photo runby of the NRHS 2016 Denver Convention. We returned to Leadville then boarded the bus back to Denver, taking a much more direct route and went through several thunderstorms on the way. We missed Union Pacific 844 returning to Denver by about ten minutes after we crossed the bridge. Upon our arrival, I said goodbye to each of our passengers. Elizabeth and I then turned in our radios and safety vests, thus ending our participation in the 2016 NRHS Denver Convention. Robin then met us and we walked over to the Country Buffet for our final dinner in Denver. After dinner we walked over to Walmart for some more Coca-Cola for my drive home. We returned to the Quality Inn for the night. It had been a very good NRHS Convention.