Snowmass history: “Steam Train Suggested as Transit System Here” |

Snowmass history: “Steam Train Suggested as Transit System Here”

System would have cost millions to connect Aspen, Snowmass by train

One b/w glass-plate negative of engine 32, Colorado Midland Railroad passenger train.  Several people are leaning out of the passenger cars.  Power lines are visible on the left side of the photo.  The Shale Bluffs are in the background. Circa 1900. Cozy Point Area.
A Colorado Midland Railroad steam-powered train photographed at Shale Bluffs and Brush Creek Road circa 1900. In 1971, some suggested a similar train system as a mode of connection between Aspen and Snowmass.
Aspen Historical Society/Courtesy Image

“An old fashioned steam train, long considered as a means of bringing vacationists from Glenwood Springs to Aspen, has been suggested as the basic public transit system to serve Aspen and Snowmass from a transportation center at the airport,” reported The Aspen Times on Dec. 16, 1971. “It has also been suggested that the transit system be extended by cog railways, possibly up Aspen Mountain several miles behind the Sundeck and on Burnt Mountain in the Owl Creek area, as is done at resorts in the Alps.”

While none of these ideas came to pass, a report on the system estimated it would cost between $3 million and $4 million to lay tracks from Aspen to Snowmass via the airport.

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