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Durango & Silverton NG Railroad, CO
mini location map2016-09-05
13 by photographer avatarchumley
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Durango & Silverton NG Railroad, CO 
Durango & Silverton NG Railroad, CO
 
Scenic Drive avatar Sep 05 2016
chumley
Scenic Drive12.20 Miles
Scenic Drive12.20 Miles   1 Hour      12.20 mph
 no routes
1st trip
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John9L
To access the Needle Creek Trail to Chicago Basin, we opted for the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad rather than the 12 mile hike from Purgatory.

Departing from Durango at 8:30a was a little early since we were driving from Arizona, so we opted for the 2:30p departure from Silverton. This doesn't work for everybody since you have to start hiking so late in the day. But Silverton has benefits such as free parking. Plus it's a fun little historic mountain town to spend some time in.

The train ride from Silverton to Needleton is about an hour and didn't disappoint. We had seats in the closed passenger cars, but I'd recommend the open air car in all but the most miserable of weather. It was raining for part of the trip and it was still nice in the open air car (it has a roof). If it's not too busy you can always wander from car to car if you need and there's a bar car with snacks, booze, and Ska beer! :)

Apparently weekends are not the busiest times, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are busiest. So keep that in mind.

The full trip from Durango to Silverton might be a little much ... I think it takes 3.5 hours, but using it as a means to get to a cool backpacking destination is highly recommended. The Animas River valley/canyon is spectacular.
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