For many folks, the commute season brims with nostalgia and is a time to comprise a protracted time-extinct household traditions, traditional motion pictures, and even caroling.

A southwestern city that embodies this extinct-fashioned cheer is Durango, Colorado, positioned decrease than thirty minutes from the Fresh Mexico border within the narrate’s southwest corner. Love Colorado’s higher-known cities, Durango is a snow-capped paradise awash with mountain views. Nonetheless it also has many other weird adventures to journey one day of the holidays, the crown jewel of which is the Durango & Silverton Slim Gauge Railroad.

A Put collectively and a City

Durango actually wouldn’t exist if no longer for its iconic railway gadget. The company that created it, the Denver & Rio Grande Railway, also founded town of Durango all the way thru the Animas River Valley in 1880. Two years later, the tracks to Silverton, a town around fifty miles north, were laid. From its foundation, this narrate repeatedly had a dual motive as a passenger narrate and a hauler of treasured metals, largely gold and silver from the San Juan Mountains. And, although the D&SNGR has confronted stiff challenges over its century-plus of existence, including financial difficulties, natural disasters, and pandemics, it’s estimated that it has delivered better than $300 million of treasured metals one day of its lifetime.

By the latter half of the twentieth century, The United States’s railway alternate used to be changing, and the Durango & Silverton Slim Gauge Railroad modified with it by emphasizing the tourism journey, adding more trains to plod, and winterizing the compartments. The charm of the trains and the surrounding build used to be tranquil evident today by the undeniable fact that dozens of Hollywood motion pictures were filmed here, including the standard Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and that the railway used to be deemed a National Ancient Landmark.

On the present time, the D&SNGR is as fashionable as ever. In 2021, USA On the present time readers voted it essentially the most uncomplicated scenic narrate plod in North The United States, and roughly 200,000 fans flock to Durango each and every person year for the different to plod no doubt one of the most few working century-extinct steam-powered trains final within the country. The company that runs the railway, American Heritage Railways, affords an monumental array of particular experiences, including a scenic, nine-hour, spherical-day out tour to Silverton, a locomotive cab plod with a narrate engineer, pictures-focused trips, and assorted vacation-themed trains all the way thru the one year—including some severely magical trains one day of the iciness season.

All Aboard for Vacation Fun

In the occasion you coast here for the holidays, you need to to well undoubtedly feel love you’re in a magical film. That’s for the reason that Durango & Silverton Slim Gauge Railroad affords a various vacation narrate plod for both formative years and formative years at coronary heart, The Polar Expressä Put collectively Scamper. You and your household will steal pleasure in traveling to the “North Pole” while singing Christmas carols, listening to a reading of The Polar Snarl guide, and, certain, involving sizzling chocolate. After you journey a lightweight demonstrate up north, Santa even boards the narrate and delivers the first present of Christmas, making it an journey each person will cherish.

Taking a survey for one other household-oriented locomotive journey? The Durango & Silverton Slim Gauge Railroad has you covered with its Cascade Canyon Frosty weather Put collectively. Readily accessible starting around Thanksgiving, this journey aspects breathtaking mountain, wooded space, and river views along your fifty-plus-mile, 5-hour coast, as well to a one-hour layover to search out nature firsthand in Cascade Canyon, positioned deep within the San Juan National Wooded space.

Downtown Durango and Past

As memorable as these narrate rides are, they’re correct about a of the festive things to manufacture in Durango one day of the commute season. Whether you seize a relaxed, casual discontinuance, snowy out of doorways adventures, or a runt bit of both, your itinerary can be jam-packed and joy-crammed.

On town


If vacation shopping is high for your to-manufacture list, be determined that to talk about with downtown Durango, the build dozens of native merchants ply their trades. You’d procure your self spending hours rummaging thru your total stores on or approach Predominant Avenue, as items consist of art work, jewelry, meals, clothes, toys, and rather more. And whenever you’re on town in early December, tag your calendar for Noel Nite, Durango’s one-day shopping tournament celebrating the season and offering monumental deals.

Whereas you’re playing your vacation shopping in and around town, you’ll are also attempting to expend. Fortunately, Durango is a foodie paradise, with memorable areas love Eleventh Facet road Put, a converted service narrate with a coffee shop, meals trucks, and more. No topic the cuisine, you’ll seemingly procure it here. In actuality, with nearly 2 hundred eating areas, Durango has more eating areas per capita than San Francisco—so expend up.

Outdoors adventures


People come to Colorado to journey a iciness wonderland, and Durango will not be any exception. Moreover dashing down no doubt one of the most build’s many snowboarding and snowboarding trails, you potentially could well also trot snowmobiling, snow tubing, and even snowshoeing. In the occasion you steal into consideration your self undoubtedly adventurous, you potentially could well also are trying your hand at ice mountaineering in Cascade Canyon or fearless the frigid while sitting at no doubt one of several ice-fishing spots within the build. And after a lengthy day of outside adventures, you need to to well per chance journey relaxing within the 120-level natural spring at Durango Sizzling Springs Resort and Spa.

In the occasion you mission outside of town, you’ll peep even more to search out, especially historical previous. Loads of nationwide parks and monuments are within driving distance, including San Juan National Wooded space, a nearly two-million-acre expanse roughly thirty-5 miles north by way of Route 550. Additionally, with this build of the country being steeped in American Indian historical previous, you’ll indulge in heaps of opportunities to learn more about it both inner and outdoors of town. Moreover downtown institutions love Toh-Atin Gallery, which sells official American Indian jewelry, art work, and crafts, you need to to well per chance stroll thru the Southern Ute Cultural Heart and Museum, positioned about thirty minutes southeast of town, to learn more about the Núuchi folks.

At final, what vacation day out would undoubtedly be total without a sleigh plod? Round twenty miles north of downtown, you’ll procure Buck’s Livery, which affords forty-5-minute horse-drawn sleigh rides that will salvage you undoubtedly feel love you’re in a Currier and Ives print. You indulge in got to reserve your day and time beforehand, although, so be determined that to location ahead.

Durango is a fashion of particular areas that completely marries the explain and the previous for a one-of-a-kind journey. Seek recommendation from here one day of the holidays to plod the rails, soak up the runt-town vibe, procure adventure, and celebrate the season while surrounded by the mountainous majesty of the Southwest.

For more records, take a look at with durango.org or durangotrain.com

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