Leaving Laramie and the Motel 8 this
morning, Chris and I headed south on US 287 and to Sherman Hill to
catch a train or two.
After our first and only train, we left here and proceeded to
Cheyenne. From there we took US 85 south to Greeley, CO.
Greeley, CO Union Pacific 1929 station now the Greeley History
Greeley was founded by a
group of visionaries who responded to New York publisher Horace
Greeley's renowned exhortation, " Go West, young man!" Greeley's
dream to establish an agricultural community in Colorado grew
from his visit in 1859. Given power by his newspaper, the
New York Tribune, and leadership by his agricultural
editor, Nathan Meeker, the dream became a reality with the
arrival of the first colonists in 1870.
The location, near the
confluence of the Cache la Poudre and South Platte rivers, was
well chosen. By 1875 the colony had constructed one of the first
large irrigation systems in the territory, and hay and barley
were waving in the fields not occupied by cattle. Cattle and
crops remain agricultural mainstays.
Found these old cars close to the station in Greeley.
Continuing south US 85 for a few miles takes us to La Salle UP
From here we back tracked to Greeley and Rt. 392 and then stopping
Originally built in 1882 by the C&S, the Windsor Depot.
Great Western Caboose 1010.
From here we continued west on Rt. 392 to I-25 and
then north to Fort Collins.
And nearby was the C & S Freight Depot.
Chris checking out the operator's stand.
Tracks leading from the car barn/shop to the main line.
The Birney Car, named after
its designer Charles Birney, is often referred to a "Galloping
Goose" because of its design. With its single truck (four
wheels) under the center of the car an overhang on each end. the
car has a tendency to bounce or "gallop" when it picks up speed.
This car was purchased new for about $6,000 in 1919. It has two
35 hp motors. The car is 28 feet long, 7'8" wide and weight
eight tons. It seats 28. Because it is a priceless antique, it
is only operated at a reduced speed. The restored line is over
1.5 miles long from City Park down Mountain Avenue to Howes
Bob Manning changing poles to reverse direction of travel.
The term "trolley" refers to
the little wheel that runs along the overhead power line to
bring down 600 volts DC for the car's power supply. The
"chugging" noise you hear from time to time is the air
compressor for air-brakes and doors. When the line was retired
in 1951, it was the last streetcar to operate commercially in
Colorado and the last scheduled Birney car operation on the
North American continent.
Bob switches tracks to go to the city park.
Notice its single truck (four wheels) under the center of the car.
Ticket office in city park and boarding area.
Mountain Avenue line.
After finishing our ride we drove several blocks to the railway
Here we asked a leaving worker if he would spare a few minutes to
give us a tour of the shop. He was very accommodating and allowed
us to see inside the shop that very few people get to see.