Trains through Grand County detour after floods

Leia Larsen
A section of railroad tracks dangles over Lost Bogie Canyon west of Denver, a result of a washout caused by recent torrential rains. Amtrak officials said train travel west from Denver is suspended, and they are not sure when it will be resumed. Photo courtesy Amtrak
Staff Photo |

A conspicuous sound has been missing in Grand County.

The trains typically whistling and clacking along the Union Pacific railroad — including the Amtrak passenger train — have been interrupted after heavy rains along the Front Range.

According to Union Pacific representative Mark Davis, disruptions began late the night of Sept. 11. Effective Friday, Sept. 20, Amtrak will join Union Pacific trains in using an alternative route through Wyoming between Denver and Salt Lake City.

Amtrak-chartered buses will provide transportation for some of its stops in Colorado. Those buses, however, will not be coming to Fraser or Granby.

“We were there in both places earlier this week to see how accessible things are,” said Marc Magliari, media contact for Amtrak. “During the cleanup period, it seems better that we don’t put more heavy vehicles on the road.”

Amtrak and Union Pacific officials expect trains to be detoured through early October as crews repair lines west of Denver. Heavy rains and flooding washed out entire rail beds, leaving tracks suspended in the Rocky Flats area east of the Moffat tunnel.

Passengers with Amtrak tickets for Granby and Fraser-Winter Park will be offered refunds or vouchers for future travel.

According to Davis, 10 trains utilize the tracks between Granby and Grand Junction each day. Those trains include eight coal trains, one freight train and the Amtrak California Zephyr passenger train.

Reporter Leia Larsen can be reached at 970=887-3334 ext. 19603.

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