Rio Grande Tunnels

The last photo was identified by a number of people.  The famous William Henry Jackson photo of a Midland train in the tunnels of the Midland RR north of Buena Vista, and the Railroad tracks of the Rio Grande was taken in 1889, not 1959, as was misprinted in the paper. 

The old bridge crossing the Rio Grande tracks is from the stage toll road which came out of South Park on the Leonhardy Cutoff. 

The first person to call was Vic Kuklin. Lyn Berry emailed me and sent a current photo of the same spot today. Paul Swedhin called to tell me his grandfather worked at Wildhorse for the Midland. 

The Midland Railroad came into the valley in 1887 and stayed up on Midland Hill so it wouldn’t lose altitude going to Leadville and beyond. The Midland went on to Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction. 

It ran its last passenger train in 1918 and the last freight train in 1921.  The track and steel trestles were dismantled for the scrap at the start of WWII.

Join the Buena Vista Heritage Railroad Convention which will be on Zoom at 10 a.m., July 18. Look on buenavistaheritage.org for instructions to sign in.  Optional tour of the site of Wildhorse on Sunday. Donations needed for the museum.

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