Views from the Train.

I wasn’t able to sleep the other night so I started looking through photos I’ve taken on train rides over the years. More specifically, because I thought it would be an interesting theme for a post—for this post, as it turns out—I started pulling out photos I’ve taken from a moving train. Perhaps this will help make the point that long-distance train travel is much more than a mode of transportation.

It takes about six hours for the westbound California Zephyr to take you from Denver up into the Flatirons, past the ski resorts at Winter Park and across mountain meadows like this one. The train follows the Colorado River through rocky canyons to Glenwood Springs. 
VIA Rail runs a train twice a week to the town of Churchill, 1100 miles north of Winnipeg and well above the so-called “tree line”. These are called “flag trees” because there is no limb growth on the three sides exposed to the constant, bitter cold north wind. Only the somewhat sheltered south side of the little trees can grow limbs that look like flags pointing south toward warmer weather.

You’re gazing at the West Texas desert from Amtrak’s Train #1, the Sunset Limited, when suddenly you seem to be suspended in mid-air as the train roars across this 275-foot-high bridge over the impressive Pecos River. When you reach the fear side, you will be “West of the Pecos.”

 I’ve taken VIA Rail’s premier Train #1, The Canadian, several times over the years and of course crossing the Canadian Rockies is a breathtaking experience. But for me, the last several hours of the westbound trip are special when the train passes through the beautiful Fraser River Valley.
And of course I couldn’t resist including this shot taken from one of the Coast Starlight’s coaches as the train passes through the famous horseshoe curve north of San Luis Obispo.

I hope these photos come through on the other end all right. I’m finally able to work with them, although several would be improved with some careful cropping. That, too, shall come. I have many hundreds of photos taken on my many travels and I’ll post them in the days and weeks ahead. I need the practice!