America’s Great Train Journey 2017



This was another Fort Collins Senior Center trip, together with a senior center group from Maryland.  The daily descriptions below and on each page are adapted from the pre-trip itinerary.   The “photos” link for each day takes you to the photos for that day.

Almost all of the photos are geotagged, which means that you can see where each photo was taken.  To do so, download the photo, then open it in your favorite photo app; details vary from app to app but look for menu items like “info” or “GPS”.  (Google Picasa is no longer available.)  I also created a “photo map” for each day as a reference.

The photos are size-reduced for the web.  If you’d like one or more full-size photos, or a DVD containing all of the photos and a couple of short iPhone movies, just ask.

Day 2  - San Francisco - photos

Today we learn why so many people have left their hearts in San Francisco with a full day tour of this fabulous city. See the Golden Gate Bridge, Mission Dolores, the Palace of Fine Arts, Nob Hill, Fisherman’s Wharf, Lombard Street - the “crookedest street in the world,” the magnificent views afforded from Telegraph Hill and, of course, the famed cable cars.

Day 3 - Amtrak to Reno - photos

Transfer to the train station in Emeryville and board the “California Zephyr” for our morning departure aboard one of America’s most famous trains. The scenery as we travel into Truckee and the Sierra Nevada Mountains is absolutely gorgeous. Arriving in Reno, Nevada, we transfer to our hotel where we have accommodations for the next two evenings.

Day 4 - Lake Tahoe - photos

A full day tour of the Lake Tahoe area is planned for us today. Drive through the scenic Sierra Nevada area to learn about the region’s history. One of today’s highlights is a cruise on Lake Tahoe—often called the “Lake in the Sky.” The huge lake is remarkably clear and blue and our cruise provides us with magnificent views of the area. Pockets of shade-sheltered snow look down on wildflower-strewn meadows; lovely homes and marinas line the shores; partially hidden shorelines are set amidst a backdrop of lush mountain scenery.

Day 5 - Bus to Salt Lake City - photos

Our motor coach takes us through Nevada and into Utah until we arrive at tonight’s destination, Salt Lake City. As we approach the city we will pass by the Great Salt Lake, the largest salt lake in the Western Hemisphere. After checking into our hotel we enjoy another fine dinner.

Day 6 - Salt Lake City - photos

We take a fascinating tour of Salt Lake City today. Our tour of the city will include seeing, among other things, historic Temple Square—with its 6-spired Salt Lake Temple and the famous Mormon Tabernacle, the Beehive House, Trolley Square, the Deuel Pioneer Log House, the Governor’s Mansion, and “This is the Place.” Following our tour, we drive to Green River where we have accommodations and are treated to dinner.

Day 7 - Amtrak to Glenwood Springs and Vail - photos

We once again board the “California Zephyr” and ride east towards Colorado. It is a day in which you will see some of the most spectacular scenery imaginable as we enter the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Upon arriving in Glenwood Springs we board our motor coach and drive through scenic Glenwood Canyon as we make our way to the world-famous resort town of Vail. We have time to enjoy the town and are treated to a tasty dinner.

Day 8 - Leadville - photos

[On day 8 the two groups separated; this is the description for the Colorado contingent.]  We drive to Leadville for a fascinating tour and train ride. Our tour of Leadville includes seeing the National Historic District of beautiful late-1800s Victorian homes and architecture, as well as its classic Opera House, 19th-century saloons, and National Mining Hall of Fame. It’s fun to stroll through the town and hear stories of some of the famous—or infamous— people who have stayed there: Doc Holliday, the “Unsinkable” Molly Brown, Buffalo Bill, and more. We’ll also drive along the “Route of the Silver Kings” before boarding the Leadville Railroad for a ride through the spectacular Colorado Rockies. Then we head for home: Fort Collins.


September 8-15, 2017