Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Georgetown Loop Railroad & Lebanon Silver Mine

One of the requests we got from my best friend before she arrived in Colorado this summer for a visit was to take a day to visit the Rocky Mountains. We thought of driving through them. We thought of heading up to the Rocky Mountain National Park. Then Mr. LH came across the Georgetown Loop Railroad. We liked the small town of Georgetown from previous visits and knew that area was absolutely beautiful so we looked into the railroad.

The Georgetown Loop Railroad crossing Devil's Gate Bridge
Built in 1884, the Georgetown Loop Railroad was originally used to connect the two mining towns of Georgetown and Silver Plume. 

Today, it is a tourist train with open car seating following the same route. It snakes it's way up the mountain about 600 feet in elevation. This was a fantastic way to view the scenery!

On the way back, you have the option of stopping off at the Lebanon Silver Mine. This is an additional fee when you purchase your train ticket. The walking tour takes you 500 feet into the original silver mine. When the price of silver dropped at the end of the 19th century, mine owners collapsed the entrances to their mines to protect their claims. Because of this, apparently when I-70 was built (right over the mine) they had no idea the mine was even there!

Exiting the Lebanon Silver Mine
Hard hats are required in the mine, but they are supplied at the beginning of the tour for no additional fee. It is a constant 44 degrees in the interior of the mine, too so you may want to wear a jacket.

We all had a great time on this trip into the Rockies. And although we didn't get beyond the continental divide, the views, as usual, were spectacular!

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