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2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..."

January 02, 2011 03:48PM avatar
Thank You ALL for a WONDERFUL 2010!!     thumbs upthumbs up

For me The Best of Times were - obviously - the two charters which my Fellow Instigatadors
and I were privileged to enjoy on the C&TS,* and a fabulous four days on the D&SNG during
Railfest in August.

Once again, a very special Thank You to Alan Loomis of the C&TS.  Without Alan's steadfast support, neither the "Springtime in the Rockies" charter nor the "Tribute to the 1970's Volunteers" re-enactment of the first C&TS train into Chama would have happened.  Period.

A special Thank You also to Jim Poston, a former employee of the C&TS, whose hard work on behalf of both charters was critical to their success. Jim not only pressure-washed both #489 and #487 prior to their being painted, he helped with so many tedious lesser chores it is impossible to remember them all, much less list them here - but one thing Jim did which all future sponsors should remember and thank him for is the often overlooked final cleanup. Following both the May and the August applications of "make-up" to the locomotives, it was Jim who policed the shops, swept the floors, and left both places cleaner than when we arrived.

The "Springtime" team also included Jerry Day, who initially encouraged me to go ahead with the 60th Anniversary Commemoration - NOT re-enactment - of #489's 'Green Jacket' Rocky Mountain RR Club excursion of May 21, 1950;  Wayne Hills who provided his father Don's excellent photos of the event (see [ngdiscussion.net]); and Dave Schaaf, President of the Rocky Club - who continued to support the event even when his own Board declined to back him.  Special Thanks are also due to Jeff Ellingson of the D&SNG Museum, who applied the authentic D&RGW Dark Olive Green Boiler Jacket Enamel Urethane to #489 for us. (This is exactly the same paint which Jeff used on D&SNG #473 and the green coaches for Railfest.)  Other hard-core instigators include fellow Curmudgeon Steve Forney, the two Nathans (Zachman & Holmes), lighting expert and professional photographer Micheal Ripley (whose talents sadly but unavoidably went unused at Osier on May 25th*), and of course the lovely Lady Ashley Holden who helped me wash #489's jacket just prior to the excursion on May 25th.

Here's Jim at work on 05/16, and the RMRRC gang at Osier on 05/25 courtesy of JBWX:

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The Worst of Times, clearly, was the disastrous fire at Lobato Trestle in late June - the worst disaster in C&TS history, eclipsing even the derailment on ice and near roll-over of a locomotive several years ago.  We all hope that the trestle will be back in service by opening day, and that the resultant publicity will lead to the most successful season on the C&TS in many years!

*****     thumbs upthumbs up

Railfest 2010 on the D&SNG was simply fabulous! How can you top (D&RGW Dark Olive) Green Coaches, E&P #4 - The Eureka, and #315? Rich and Yvonne - who had joined us May 25th on the C&TS (and have threatened to "borrow" Rock Tunnel for installation on the D&S) were exemplary host & hostess, and I remain indebted to Ashley (again) and Soni for providing a ride back to Silverton on Saturday evening.  Jeff Taylor and his crew from Knott's added a lot of camaraderie to the weekend (my attempt to pass them off as my (Arrogant) bastard sons from three different affairs, and to marry one of them off to a waitress at The Barley Exchange in Durango failed miserably - the young lady was probably afraid - rightfully so - that all of them us are carriers of the dreaded "foamer" DNA ... eye popping smiley )   It was also great to finally - in May and/or August - to meet so many of my NGDF friends face-to-face at last!

Here's some of the "Vista" gang on August 19, and Lady Ashley on August 21:
No matter how hard she may try - even hiding out in locomotive smokeboxes - Lady Ashley will NEVER become a Curmudgeon!   The same goes for Dave Schaaf - he may hang out with us - and even be tempted to emulate one the worst of us, but he's just too young and WAY too good-natured to qualify as a full-blooded Curmudgeon ...

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What can I say about the celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the C&TS' arrival in Chama on September 6, 1970 except THANK YOU to everyone who helped bring it about and to make it - in spite of the challenges caused by the fire at Lobato - such a GREAT weekend!   Thank You yet again to Alan Loomis, who helped me charter the Tribute Train when the 1970 Volunteers were overlooked by the C&TS PR manager; to Jim Poston who covered my back and took care of so many of the chores associated with the "grotesquefication" of #487 into #483, to Joe Tribble of Chama who stepped in and helped Jim and me complete the prep for painting when we had fallen a full day behind and then did such a fine job of applying the Tuscan Red to engine and tender; to Rich Murray and his son Mike for their critical assistance with applying the lettering and logos to the tender, and Rich's hand-painting of the big number "3" which I had neglected to order as a vinyl press-on; to Casey & Cody Akin who had made a full-size replica of #483's number plate as a gift to Roger Hogan, and to Roger for lending it to us as the finishing touch for #483's make-up (it's attachment in front of #487's own plate is barely visible in photos and movies).   Many thanks also to Ed Stabler - himself a 1970 volunteer - for providing such excellent entertainment at Cumbres on Friday evening and again on Monday afternoon, and for joining the track-clearing crew later on.   Thanks also to John Cole and Steve Forney for organizing the presentations and panel discussion at Fosters, and along with Roger Hogan and Cole Adams for preserving the same on video, and to Jason Rose for his wonderful contributions to the "official record" also.

Here's #487 about 90% grotesquefied - along with some of the guiltiest of those responsible - on August 27, and Ernie Robart putting the finishing touch on the re-recreation of #483 circa 1970 on August 30:

*****     thumbs upthumbs up

Of course NONE of the above would matter two hoots without the contributions of the 1970 volunteers themselves!
Without them we simply would not have a railroad today to celebrate.

THANK YOU Terry Ross and Ernie Robart for all of your efforts on behalf of preservation of the railroad in 1968,
1969 and 1970, and thank you for sharing your experiences and photos with us on August 29 and 30, 2010.
And a BIG Thank You to everyone whose faith and commitment lives on today as The Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad:

1960’s & 1970 MAJOR VOLUNTEERS:

Ken Green, Alamosa, CO
Herman Barkmann, Santa Fe, NM
Dick Glass, Santa Fe, NM
John Pritchard, Los Alamos, NM
George Swain, Los Alamos, NM
Dan Pyzel, Albuquerque, NM
Ben Greathouse, Alamosa, CO
Allen Stevenson, Durango, CO
Arthur Pugh, Albuquerque, NM
Sid McKinney, Amarillo, TX
Rich Braden, Bloomfield Hills, MI
Virgil & Mavis Bockhaus, Monte Vista, CO
Bob Burggraaf, Beulah, CO
John Oldberg, Colorado Springs, CO
Hugh Fowler, Denver, CO
Rep. Clarence Quinlan, Antonito, CO
Ken Pruitt, Albuquerque, NM
Clay Bair, Albuquerque, NM
Mike Mitchell, Albuquerque, NM
Dan Romero, Albuquerque, NM
Mike Carr, Chicago, IL,
Woody Wilson, Chicago, IL,
Alan Stevens, Albuquerque, NM
Dave Wood, Albuquerque, NM
Jeff Stebbins, Taos, NM
Eddie Vigil, Chama, NM
Swede Johnson, Antonito, CO
Mark McMahon, Los Alamos, NM
Janet Berenda, Santa Fe, NM
Gov. Dave Cargo, Santa Fe, NM
John Mershon, Cloudcroft, NM
Local Residents - Chama, NM, & Antonito, CO
Financial contributors - World wide


- El Curmudgeono de los Locos Viejos y Verdes

  * See [ngdiscussion.net] et seq, [ngdiscussion.net] et seq, [ngdiscussion.net] et seq and the numerous links on [ngdiscussion.net].

 ** Original plans for May 25 called for leaving later in the afternoon, passing the regular eastbound passenger train at Lava Loop rather than Big Horn, arriving at m.p. 317.5 near moonrise (about 1/2 hour before sunset), and having a night photo shoot at Osier.   Concerns about the condition of the connector track at Lava prevented having the meet there, and Marvin's concerns about the late return of the crew to Antonito precluded staying in Osier - or stopping at Hangman's trestle - long enough to set up Michael's lights. I didn't push the issue, as my main concern was to not jeopardize the Tribute Train for the 1970 Volunteers - which I had been advocating for at least the last five years - by antagonizing the C&TS management.     Mea Culpa - Russ

Edited 10 time(s). Last edit at 11/27/2018 10:39AM by Russo Loco.
Subject Author Posted

2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..." Attachments

Russo Loco January 02, 2011 03:48PM

Re: 2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..."

John Cole January 02, 2011 04:57PM

Re: 2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..."

Ed Stabler January 02, 2011 08:43PM

Re: 2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..." Attachments

chamafun463 January 04, 2011 08:38AM

Re: 2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..."

Larry Spencer January 04, 2011 12:11PM

Re: The events of 2010

Dave Schaaf January 04, 2011 06:56AM

Re: The Worst of photos ...

Russo Loco January 04, 2011 10:55AM

Re: The Worst of photos ...

Russo Loco January 05, 2011 01:00PM

Re: The Worst of photos ...

Ed Stabler January 05, 2011 02:11PM

Re: The Worst of Bloviation ...

Russo Loco January 05, 2011 08:23PM

Re: 2010 - "The Best of Times, The Worst of Times ..."

BrianJ January 04, 2011 02:52PM

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