American rail holiday – 4

14 June 2013

A lie in this morning we catch the steam train to Silverton. What an amazing journey hugging the rocks and trees, the smell of the train takes me back to my childhood.

This 1880s steam train meanders the waterfalls, majestic peaks of the Colorado rockies and the white waters of the animas river. It took 4 hours to do the 45 miles and I think everyone should experience the awe inspiring, beautiful journey. Enough said. We arrived at the mining town of Silverton (named because of the tonnes of silver it send down to Durango).

This was true 1900s Wild West at its best. Had a great lunch at grumpy’s with player at honky tonk piano. A true saloon with saucy lady paintings on the wall and a wonderful wooden carved bar and back. We are at 9315ft. We set off through the mountain tops to Ouray another great example of a Wild West town then on to Grand Junction named because of the joining of two great rivers. It’s in the high 80s so going for a swim. God it was cold, but everything tightened up nicely for the night out. David the driver thought we were a cute (really?) couple. Bless. Food and great beer good night out 🙂

15 June 2013

We’re up for 7.30am, bags outside the room and down for a complimentary breakfast. I made a waffle! (The best part about it was the making). Then, a short trip to the station to catch the Amtrak to Denver.

The trains are amazing. You travel on the top deck with huge seats . Foot rests, leg rests, food trays and recliners. its pure luxury.

It follows the mighty Colorado river valley all the way to Denver. Arid on the left and green to the right. Sometimes vast views other times small canyons.

Once more we have to thank Nicks mum for the weather. Saw 2 fabulous bald headed eagles and a nest of chicks from the train. Snow covered mountains and rolling hills to each side then a 6.2 mile tunnel and coming out at 9500ft.

The rockies end abruptly after 7 hours journey and a vast open plain stretches out before you with the skyline of Denver in the distance. this plain lasts until Chicago, everything is big here.

Well, well, well, it only happens to be gay pride in Denver! It could be a late night.

Bev (a friend from Malton who is also a rep for the travel company) was waiting in reception so going for a meal then drinks. Lovely hotel and a “double” room. This holiday gets better and better.

16 June 2013

We had a lie in this morning to recover! Denver is a great city with a lovely dry climate (12″of rain a year) plus, the whole of the centre was cordoned off for pride and there must have been 30000 people there. Wranglers bar opposite the hotel is having a party too for over a 1000. We have come back to the hotel to rest before going out tonight. It’s been a beautiful day, I had my pic taken with a beauty and placed a crisp 1$ note in his waistband. The hunky firemen from Denver’s fire dept calendar were pleasant too mmmmmm.

Out for a meal with Bev then on to Wranglers for one before bed.

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