Saturday, October 7, 2017

Western RV Trip Days 23-24 Pikes Peak and Cripple Creek

Tuesday was our day to ride the Pikes Peak Cog Railway so we arrived at the depot at 12:45 for our 1:20 departure on a foggy and drizzly day.  Based on the weather, I had very low expectations for our trip and commented that we would at least get to ride the railway even if we couldn’t see anything and wondered why I had brought my camera equipment along.

Each of the cars can operate independently with its own turbo charged diesel engine and cog drive system – they are built Switzerland.  For our departure there was a two car unit and our independent car, which carried about 100 passengers.

We slowly made our way up the foggy canyon with very little to see but trees, rocks, and fog then all of a sudden we broke out above the clouds to bright sun and an amazing view.  Here are a few shots of the trip to the top.

Once on top we unloaded to visit the rest room, the gift shot, and the snack bar and to take more pics - I think Bev was cold.

On the trip down we saw some big horn sheep at a distance and we saw marmots right along the tracks.

It turned out to be a great trip and I’m really glad we did it - due to the weather, we never did see Pike's Peak from the ground.

Wednesday was our last day and we decided to spend it driving to the other side of Pikes Peak to visit Cripple Creek and Victor and once again it was a foggy, rainy, cold day.  The locals should thank us for bringing all of this rain to their area as it was warm and dry before we got there and was predicted to be the same after we left.  Even though foggy and rainy, the Aspens were still very pretty.

The Cripple Creek area is famous for its gold mines which have produced more gold than the CA and AK gold stirikes combined – Newmont is still running a huge mine there, we could only get shots of the outside but below is a Google Earth shot.  It appears to be about 3 miles across and 5 miles long (it's 4 miles from Cripple Creek to Victor) leaving a giant scar on the earth.

What we saw from the outside is on the lower left side around where the 67 is located.  

By comparison here is an old mine.

Apparently Cripple Creek was in serious decline until Casino gambling was permitted and now it is a bustling tourist town thanks to the 11 casinos.

This can be contrasted with Victor, which is in pretty rough shape.

After visiting Victor, we returned to Cripple Creek for lunch at Maggie's Restaurant followed by a little gambling at the Colorado Grand Casino.  I actually left the casino with $10 extra, which is a very rare event.  Even with the bad weather, it was a good way to spend our final day in the area.

Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them and the blue words are links.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.


9/16/17 Event Date


  1. What an interesting area to explore Pike's Peak would have been nice experience, Cripple Creek mine is a huge operation.

  2. Larry, Nice photos from the cog railroad... Colorado is on our list for a major trip/exploration in the not too distant future. We've only touched the southern part of the state along the border with New Mexico. Bev definitely looked COLD! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  3. I have so enjoyed your trip... We have been to Pike's Peak (driven up both times--but have never ridden the train)... Little did you know but you chose a great time to go up there... Great set of pictures....

    We also have been to the Black Hills area of SD --and loved Custer/Needles, etc..... I want to go back there sometime... We were there in Fall also --and loved seeing all of the Fall colors...

    Sounds like you have had a marvelous trip. We just got home from a 16 day one to Utah/Arizona ourselves... It was absolutely marvelous...


  4. Indian casinos are a blessing and a curse depending on how you look at it. Luckily gambling is the only vice I am not afflicted with. Pikes Peak looks like fun.

  5. Beautiful photos - and yes Bev looks cold! I've never done that cog trip. I'd like to. Glad you made the trip to Cripple Creek. I think marmots are very cool. When they chirp they sound just like a your smoke detectors when its telling you the battery is getting low. How annoying is that? :)

  6. the forest is awesome! especially the colors in middle autumn are the most picturesque!

  7. You're making me miss the wild west! Great shots and equally great adventure.

  8. Loved this area! Great pics! We took the windy road back road to Cripple Creek, never again! Not my idea of fun to look down a couple of thousand feet from the side of the road with no guard rail!!! We were there in the summer when it snowed on top of Pikes Peak, a beautiful sight! Way to go at the Casino!


I appreciate and enjoy your comments