I remember the first time I boarded the train out of Omaha several years ago thinking I was in for a unique experience. I was so right! Since then I've taken the Zephyr many times and each trip was an adventure.
The Zephyr runs from Chicago to Emeryville California with over 30 stops along the route. It travels through some of the most scenic areas in North America. As you climb through the Rockies, and head further west through the Sierra Nevada Mountains the views are spectacular!
The sights through the Rocky Mountains are my favorite. The best views are from the viewing car as the train chugs through the mountains and goes through 43 tunnels carved into the mountains. You will travel over the Continental Divide, cruise alongside the Colorado River and travel through the red rock walls of Glenwood Canyon.
On my first Zephyr trip I was sitting in the observation car talking with a retired couple from England as we were watching the whitewater rafters. Then, one rafter stood up, turned around and mooned the train. We chuckled as the countless rafters continued to moon the train. Laughter broke out in the car as others pointed too all the moons on the river!
Don’t Pet the Goats
Recently, I took the Zephyr heading to Colorado for some hiking. I boarded in Omaha around 11:00pm, fell asleep, woke up around 6:30am as we pulled into Union Station in Denver.
I picked up a rental car in Downtown Denver then headed to Mt. Evans Wilderness Area, a quick 40-minute trip away. The area is home to Mt. Evans one of Colorado's fourteeners and the scenic byway which is the highest paved road in North America as it travels up to the summit area with breathtaking views and lots of Rocky Mountain Goats scrambling over the rocky terrain. After spending the day hiking the Chicago Lakes trail, I headed to my next destinations, Eldorado Canyon State Park and Gross Reservoir.
Two of the best kept secrets in the state are Eldorado Canyon State Park and Gross Reservoir. The park is located just outside of Boulder. It's small but mighty as the South Boulder Creek flows through the golden canyon walls, home to some outstanding hiking and rock climbing.
The reservoir sitting at 7,225 feet is located about 40 miles northwest of Denver. It's home to some of the best fishing, camping, hiking and sunrises in the state. As I hiked along a trail overlooking the dam the colors of the sky began to lighten up with beautiful vibrant colors as the sunrise began to fill the sky. Suddenly, I was surrounded by the colorful reflections as the sun light filled the area.
Rocky Mountain High
Colorado is home to 4 National Parks, 8 National Monuments, 42 State Parks, 11 National Forests, 58 mountain peaks exceeding 14,000 feet and over 30 world class Ski Areas. The fact that all of this is just over 500 miles from the Missouri Valley area of Omaha amazes me! God has truly created a unique and beautiful world for us! Take a few moments and check out sunrises/sunsets on the site for some of God's artwork in nature!
Breathe in. Breathe out. Move on.