What am I missing, Eastbound on the CZ from Glenwood Springs?

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spinnaker

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Mar 23, 2018
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419
Another trip I am thinking about is flying into Denver. Riding my bicycle to Glenwood Springs with maybe a side trip to Aspen. There are a number of bike trails in that area believe it or not.

So what am I missing, Eastbound on the CZ starting from Glenwood Springs? I know the Cascades. And part of Utah which is kind of cool. But am I missing much of the Rockies? I made the trip once before from Sacramento but trying to remember where in Colorado, it starts getting good.

I am hoping I have time because what I might do, is to take the CZ west to Sacramento. Stay the night then come back east again. That way I don't miss anything. ;)
 

chakk

Conductor
Joined
May 26, 2011
Messages
2,555
Another trip I am thinking about is flying into Denver. Riding my bicycle to Glenwood Springs with maybe a side trip to Aspen. There are a number of bike trails in that area believe it or not.

So what am I missing, Eastbound on the CZ starting from Glenwood Springs? I know the Cascades. And part of Utah which is kind of cool. But am I missing much of the Rockies? I made the trip once before from Sacramento but trying to remember where in Colorado, it starts getting good.

I am hoping I have time because what I might do, is to take the CZ west to Sacramento. Stay the night then come back east again. That way I don't miss anything. ;)
Riding the CZ from Glenwood Springs to Denver absolutely gives you the "best of the Rockies". You will miss Ruby Canyon (west of Grand Jct) and Debeque Canyon (east of Grand Jct) but get all of the other good ones in Colorado.

To get those other two, you would need to board the eastbound CZ at 8 AM in Green River, UT.

Starting just after noon in Glenwood Springs is a nice compromise.
 

DennisInGeorgia

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 28, 2008
Messages
78
On one memorable trip EB, the conductor told us at Glenwood that boaters, as the track ran along the Colorado River east of town, were all excited to see the Zephyr approach. He told us the boaters would even give us a “special salute” as the train ran alongside the water. That day, several of them paddled to our side to “salute “ us. In the Eastern US, they call it “mooning”.. which is why it only happens in warmer weather.
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
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815
Gotta admire bikers. We’re it me, I’d take the CZ westbound on it’s very scenic climb up the front range of the Rockies, thru the canyons, to Glenwood Springs. Then bike downhill to Denver! And if if you’re into pain but glorious scenery check out biking Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mtn, NP.
 

spinnaker

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Mar 23, 2018
Messages
419
Gotta admire bikers. We’re it me, I’d take the CZ westbound on it’s very scenic climb up the front range of the Rockies, thru the canyons, to Glenwood Springs. Then bike downhill to Denver! And if if you’re into pain but glorious scenery check out biking Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mtn, NP.

If I do this , I probably will tune it around and go the other way. But I might switch the trip to Icefields Parkway out of Jasper. Maybe take the VIA train to get thee.
 

chakk

Conductor
Joined
May 26, 2011
Messages
2,555
Gotta admire bikers. We’re it me, I’d take the CZ westbound on it’s very scenic climb up the front range of the Rockies, thru the canyons, to Glenwood Springs. Then bike downhill to Denver! And if if you’re into pain but glorious scenery check out biking Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mtn, NP.
Glenwood Springs is approximately the same elevation as Denver. So whether you are biking eastward or westward, you are going to have to climb up at least 6,000 feet to cross the Continental Divide. And if you following the I-70 Route, you get a bonus steep climb (in either direction) over Vail Pass.
 

PaulM

Conductor
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Jun 27, 2008
Messages
2,267
Glenwood Springs is approximately the same elevation as Denver. So whether you are biking eastward or westward, you are going to have to climb up at least 6,000 feet to cross the Continental Divide. And if you following the I-70 Route, you get a bonus steep climb (in either direction) over Vail Pass.
I once biked from Winter Park to Glenwood Springs via Kremmling, Dillon, and Vail Pass. So I know what you are talking about.

But what I want to know is the OP's route from Denver to Vail Pass. I think that would be much more difficult than Vail Pass going east or west.
 

chakk

Conductor
Joined
May 26, 2011
Messages
2,555
I once biked from Winter Park to Glenwood Springs via Kremmling, Dillon, and Vail Pass. So I know what you are talking about.

But what I want to know is the OP's route from Denver to Vail Pass. I think that would be much more difficult than Vail Pass going east or west.
Steepest part of a bike journey would be the west side of Vail Pass (for eastbound riders). . Lesser grades for an eastward journey crossing the Divide over Tennessee Pass, through Leadville, then follow the out-of-service D&RGW ROW to Salida and then US50 to the Front Range.
 

basketmaker

Train Attendant
Joined
Apr 19, 2018
Messages
95
On one memorable trip EB, the conductor told us at Glenwood that boaters, as the track ran along the Colorado River east of town, were all excited to see the Zephyr approach. He told us the boaters would even give us a “special salute” as the train ran alongside the water. That day, several of them paddled to our side to “salute “ us. In the Eastern US, they call it “mooning”.. which is why it only happens in warmer weather.
Always expect "salutes" during warmer temps! Even dad gets into it with the wife and kids on the boat! upload_2019-8-10_15-45-36.png
 

chakk

Conductor
Joined
May 26, 2011
Messages
2,555
Our sleeping car attendant said that they referred to the Colorado as "moon river". :)
Better is when there are fishermen on the Colorado River. Engineers toots the horn to get the fishermen to hold up and display their catch. Cook then reaches out with his grappling hook. Voila -- fresh trout available for dinner that night in the diner!
 
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