Friday, June 02, 2017

Durango-Silverton, Four Corners, and Monument Valley

Yesterday, we rode the steam train from Durango to Silverton on the well-known narrow gauge railroad, has been operating since the 1800s. Our car was restored to match that time period and we had narrators in period costume telling us about life in that area in the late 1800s and about the spectacular scenery we were seeing from the windows. A one-way trip in the train usually takes about 3 1/2 hours, but our trip up the mountain took a bit longer (in the neighborhood of two hours longer) because our engine broke down and we had to be rescued by another. This actually turned out to be the younger boys' favorite part of the whole trip, since we were able to get off the train and play with all the coal that has fallen by the wayside. They were fascinated that they could break it fairly easily with other rocks, and they loved how shiny it appeared on the inside, even when it was dull on the outside. They were also interested in the fact that there were pieces of every size. They even found one chuck that probably weighed five pounds. You've never seen such dirty, happy boys! We did finally make it to Silverton in time for a late lunch and then reboarded the train and headed back to Durango, where we grabbed some dinner before finally making it back to our RV park. It was a long day but so much fun!

All aboard!

A big hunk of coal

Catching a glimpse of the engine and
other cars as we round a bend

One of many spectacular views

A beautiful​ rainbow over the gorge
on our way back to Durango

Today, we bid adieu to Colorado and checked some other states off our list. Our first stop was Four Corners. The kids had all been looking forward to being in four states at once, and they all posed for individual and group photos. From there, we headed over to Monument Valley, AZ, to see the rock formations made famous by pretty much every Western movie ever made. It was truly a beautiful and unique place, so we lingered a little longer with lunch at the onsite restaurant. After many more miles of amazing scenery, including Antelope Canyon and Lake Powell, we finally made it to our campground in Utah, just outside Zion National Park.

Four Corners

Monument Valley

A Navajo taco for lunch

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