Colorado Railroad Museum Thanksgiving Goosefest

On Saturday and Sunday, November 29 and 30, 2008, the Colorado Railroad Museum brought out all three of their RGS motors – aka the “Galloping Geese” – for a special post-Thanksgiving Goosefest. While I believe RGS 2 has been operational except for the last couple years, to my knowledge the other two – RGS 6 and RGS 7 – have been inoperable at least since I moved to Colorado nearly a decade ago. In 2005, the CRRM began rebuilding all three. RGS 2 returned to operation in 2007, and earlier this month, RGS 6 and 7 rolled out of the shop to make their way around the Museum’s half mile loop of track.

Saturday – a cold, cloud-covered day with a touch of snow on the ground – marked the first time they’ve officially run together for museum visitors. Despite the rather dreary cold weather, a good number of fans turned out for the event, with sizable lines waiting to ride the whole time I was there. Aside from carburetor needle valve problems plaguing RGS 6 (once causing it to need a bit of a push over the top in the morning, and sidelining it again in the early afternoon), everything seemed to run smoothly. Truly a beautiful sight – three RGS motors rebuilt and running together again in 2008, 77 years after one of them was built (RGS 2, in 1931). All I can say is “thank you” to the museum staff and volunteers who made this happen.

But wait, there’s more. Right now, the Museum is trying to put together an even greater Goose event in May 2009. If all goes according to plan, the six surviving Geese (RGS 2-7) and the replica of RGS 1 will be reunited – RGS 1 from Ridgway, RGS 4 from Telluride/Ridgway, RGS 5 from Dolores, RGS 2, 6, and 7 from the Museum, and possibly, just maybe, RGS 3 from Knotts in California. Stay tuned…

All photographs in this trip report were taken with a Canon EOS 40D using either a Canon 24-105mm F4 L IS/USM, Sigma 18-50mm, or a Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6L IS/USM.

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