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Full Steam Ahead! Colorado’s Rio Grande Scenic Railroad Ready to Roll


Diverse Rides, Exciting Events, Incredible Offers All Part of 2009 Season

La Veta, Colo. – There’s a fantastic scenic train chugging across Colorado’s San Luis Valley and over La Veta Pass offering great excursions and providing memorable experiences to rail fans young and old.

And, the 2009 season, officially kicking off Memorial Day Weekend, May 23 and 24, provides lots of reasons to get on board the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad.

“There truly is something for everyone this year on the train,” said John Thomas, VP of sales and marketing. “Whether it be just a fun ride, great music, awesome scenery or to explore the area, the train has something to suit your budget, style and time.”

The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad’s diverse rides offer short 3-hour trips or half and full day excursions that travel over scenic mountain passes or across the open valley floor. New this year, visitors can board the train in the easily-accessible mountain town of La Veta, just 16 miles from Interstate 25 near Walsenburg, and ride over the pass to Alamosa or the Great Sand Dunes National Park, where passengers can explore the area, hike the dunes and play in gentle Medano Creek flowing from the snowmelt on the mountain peaks.

The new La Veta departure is an easy way for vacationers from Colorado Springs, Denver or along I-25 to escape on a train ride and explore the area. The train’s location in La Veta is just two hours from Colorado Springs, 3.5 hours from Denver, less than one hour from Pueblo, Trinidad or points in northern New Mexico and only minutes from Walsenburg.

From Alamosa, passengers can board the train and choose several different excursions, from traveling to La Veta to riding the Potato Valley Explorer across the valley to experiencing one of the few standard gauge and narrow gauge connections in North America between the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad and the Cumbres & Toltec Railroad.

2009 Events
In addition to the diverse rides, the train has a line up of great events and special rides slated for the 2009 season. Following opening weekend (May 23-24), Saddles, Steam and Strings, on June 6, features a lone cowboy signing traditional and contemporary favorites while riding the rails; an amateur photography and videography ride, slated for June 20, features tips and techniques on taking nature pictures and video, along with special stops at scenic locations; and the very popular Second Annual Rails and Ales Brewfest, on June 27, featuring 20 regional breweries, live music and great food in a scenic venue accessibly only by train.

In addition to other music events, the train’s popular Mountain Music Show returns on July 10 with several exclusive performances by America’s cowboy poet Michael Martin Murphey in a private outdoor, mountain venue only accessible by the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad.

A complete, updated listing of events is available online at

2009 Special Pricing Offers
The Rio Grande of 1878
Kicking off the 2009 season over Memorial Day Weekend, May 23 - 25, the train is offering a special daily ticket price that harkens back to 1878, the year the train’s route to La Veta, Colo. was first established. Throughout opening weekend, roundtrip tickets are just $18.78 per person. Passengers can board the train in either La Veta or Alamosa. The discounted ticket price is good for adults, seniors or children and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Other restrictions do apply.

Four Seasons Railcard
The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad is offering rail fans a great way to ride the rails and experience the train’s varied events and different seasons through the Four Seasons Railcard. For a one-time purchase of $99, passengers can ride the train four times throughout the 2009 operating season, including on theme and specialty trains, such as the popular North Pole Express in winter. In addition, the card provides riders with a 10% discount in the train’s gift shop or online store and a 20% discount on the purchase of any additional theme or specialty ride tickets for friends and family. Some restrictions do apply.

Military Stars & Stripes Discount Days
Military personnel receive a 10 percent discount on all regular fares on the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad. In addition, the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad is offering current or retired military personnel with valid I.D., a free adult, senior or child ticket with the purchase of one regularly priced adult or senior ticket.
• Armed Forces Day: Saturday, May 16
• Memorial Day: Monday, May 25
• Flag Day: Sunday, June 14
• Independence Day: Saturday, July 4
• Patriot Day: Friday, September 11

For more information about the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad, ticket prices and schedules or a listing of this year’s events, visit or call 877-726-RAIL.

About Rio Grande Scenic Railroad
The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad ( is Colorado’s newest train offering steam engine rides through breathtaking mountain valleys and over legendary La Veta pass on hundreds of miles of historic rail. Daily and weekend excursions offer riders a trip back in time on restored passenger cars that stop at historic towns, Great Sand Dunes National Park and connect with the Cumbres & Toltec Railroad. The train’s La Veta route was established in 1878.

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