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The Trip going to the NRHS 2016 Convention in Denver Day 1 7/1/2016

by Chris Guenzler

With a new NRHS President, the organizations leadership has decided to go back to many of the old ways of doing NRHS Convention, looking at another direction for the next several conventions. After fours years of Bart Jennings handling the convention operations, Bart felt that it was time for others to step up to assist with all of the work that it takes to coordinate such events. So after four of the greatest NRHS conventions in history in four states that had never held a convention (Iowa, Alaska, Arkansas, and Vermont), we will have to wait to see what will be done.

The NRHS chose Denver for the 2016 convention, which could have been a dream convention. However, when details were announced and published in Railpace, it was just these trips:

7/19 Tue NRHS Royal Gorge
7/20 Wed Denver Light and Commuter Rail
7/21 Thu NRHS Georgetown Loop & Colorado RR Museum doubleheaded steam
7/22 Fri NRHS Meeting Day {no trips}
7/23 Sat NRHS Leadville Trip to Climax

Other than a few new miles into Climax and the new light and commuter rail Denver has added since my last trip there, it would mostly be old mileage that I have already ridden. The good news is that by doing an extended trip I could get to see many new things and ride several tourist trains. So I knew I could make a good trip out of this with my usual good planning. I signed up with Eizabeth to be bus and car host on some of the trips.

So now we will see what happens. This year it looks like it will be me along with Robin Bowers, Elizabeth Alkire, and Chris Parker. Robin would do the entire trip with me and it would be brand new for him. Chris Parker would fly into Denver on July 12 and leave the morning that the convention starts. Elizabeth would fly in on July 16 and would leave the morning after the convention. But you know I will make it a dream trip like I always do. I came up with a plan and changed it three times before I got it to work.

The Trip Starts! 7/1/2016

I got up, packed the car and left my house at 8:10 AM and took surface streets to Robin Bowers' apartment to pick him up. We loaded his luggage and were off. We took the car pool lane on the San Diego Freeway to the Newport Freeway to the Santa Ana Freeway then the Orange Freeway to the Pomona Freeway. We had to escape it to get onto Interstate 15 which we took to Interstate 40 east. We made a rest stop after Newberry Springs then our next stop was in Needles for gas and lunch at Carl's Junior. We crossed into Arizona then spotted the first of three trains on the way to Kingman. We took US 66 through Kingman Canyon and caught up to the third train.

My first train of the day was BNSF 7021 East. We moved futher east in Kingman Canyon.

BNSF 7061 East in Kingman Canyon. From here we drove into Kingman.

The first stop was the Santa Fe 4-8-4 3759.

Our next stop was the Santa Fe Kingman station. From here we took old US 66 out of Kingman.

We passed two westbound BNSF freights as we caught up and passed the BNSF 7061 East.

BNSF 6743 West near Huckleberry.

BNSF 7021 East near Huckleberry.

Life is one hard highway!

The clouds were fun to watch on our drive east today. We took US 66 east to Seligman then US 40 east to Ash Fork where we headed north to the Crookton Cutoff at MP 396 where we set up for pictures.

BNSF 7524 East at MP 396. A few minutes later we heard a horn from the east and rumbling from the west. Two more trains are coming.

The westbound scene.

BNSF 7343 West at MP 386. Now the eastbound train came into view.

BNSF 7649 East met BNSF 7343 West at MP 386. We then headed back to Ash Fork.

The Santa Fe Ash Fork station.

The sky at Ash Fork. From here we drove to Williams.

Grand Canyon SP&S (NP) 2-8-2 539.

The Williams Santa Fe station.

A Williams scene. We stopped at MacDonalds for dinner. From here we drove to Maine.

BNSF 7021 East just beat us there. From here we drove into Flagstaff. We drove first to the Northern Arizona Museum.

Southwest Lumber Mills INC 2-6-6-2 12.

A lumber car.

Santa Fe caboose 999455.

Four more views of the Southwest Lumber Mills INC 2-6-6-2 12. From here we headed back into town.

The Santa Fe freighthouse.

The Santa Fe Flagstaff station.

Southwest Lumber Mills INC 2-8-0 25.

A log car.

One last view of the Santa Fe freighthouse. We drove to the Snow Peak Inn for the night.