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Thought folks might want to sign this petition. It would be a shame if trains invaded Browns Canyon:

Isn't this the same rail line that has been there for 100 years? Seems to me whatever damage might occur has already been done and it takes trucks off the road. If it was a new line I'd sign but the trains never bothered me much when they were running (Canon City native)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Isn't this the same rail line that has been there for 100 years? Seems to me whatever damage might occur has already been done and it takes trucks off the road. If it was a new line I'd sign but the trains never bothered me much when they were running (Canon City native)
The rail line has been abandoned and unused for 25 years, so this would essentially be a "new line". Through Browns Canyon, the rail line is extremely close to the river. It would be a fiasco if an oil car derailed and dumped into the river. I love Browns Canyon as it is one of the only stretches in Colorado that can be easily overnighted without train noise - unlike Upper C.
 

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SarahofTheWaves
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Not worth it. I started running Browns when there were trains. Loud, dangerous, intrusive, industrial. There is already a freight train of rafts in the river. Was always hoping the line would be converted to a trail.
S
 

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Is it selfish to desire peace and quite over efficiency? Trains on Browns would suck and make scouting a potential felony...but trains are incredibly efficient compared to trucks. Reducing not only fuel consumption but also wear and tear on the roads. A rail car in the river would be a catastrophe, potentially closing the section of river for weeks. Then again, trains don't derail often where trucks are involved in incidents regularly, oftentimes resulting in loss of life.

Certainly a difficult decision. Do the negatives outweigh the benefits? Guess it all depends on your personal perspective.
 

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All good points - especially the risk of an oil spill (if the PR about the line being used to transport Uintah basin oil is accurate). Trouble with governing by petitions is that the people signing often don't have enough information. It's a popularity contest with competing special interests, not an informed policy decision. Just to be clear I'm not advocating for the re-activation of the line but there are other factors to consider. To start with, re-activation is NOT the same as building a new line. Building new line (or highway) would have extensive environmental impacts wherever it is built, as will the alternative means of transport. And while I can see that there is a good argument against enabling fossil fuel development, it's not realistic to think that billions of dollars of existing energy infrastructure is going to sit idle if the line is not re-activated - the oil is going to get to market (until we change the market) so what are the impacts of the alternative transportation options? The article mentions 1000 tanker cars a day - that equates to 3000 semi trucks, where are they going to be traveling to and from and at what cost (environmental and otherwise)? What about all the other freight that the line will move, what is the alternative means to transport that? Maybe a new highway? A the least, a lot more less efficient trucks. Jobs? Taxes? This line is a previously impacted transportation corridor, we should think long and hard before we abandon it. Just some food for thought and discussion
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
All good points - especially the risk of an oil spill (if the PR about the line being used to transport Uintah basin oil is accurate). Trouble with governing by petitions is that the people signing often don't have enough information. It's a popularity contest with competing special interests, not an informed policy decision. Just to be clear I'm not advocating for the re-activation of the line but there are other factors to consider. To start with, re-activation is NOT the same as building a new line. Building new line (or highway) would have extensive environmental impacts wherever it is built, as will the alternative means of transport. And while I can see that there is a good argument against enabling fossil fuel development, it's not realistic to think that billions of dollars of existing energy infrastructure is going to sit idle if the line is not re-activated - the oil is going to get to market (until we change the market) so what are the impacts of the alternative transportation options? The article mentions 1000 tanker cars a day - that equates to 3000 semi trucks, where are they going to be traveling to and from and at what cost (environmental and otherwise)? What about all the other freight that the line will move, what is the alternative means to transport that? Maybe a new highway? A the least, a lot more less efficient trucks. Jobs? Taxes? This line is a previously impacted transportation corridor, we should think long and hard before we abandon it. Just some food for thought and discussion
I'm not sure that this is an "either" trains "or" trucks, but that this would be a shortcut for trains. As I understand it, trains would be used for transport either way. Does that make oil slightly more expensive? Probably. Is that necessarily a bad thing? Probably not. I'd rather pay a couple cents more per gallon to fill my tank than have trains going through a national monument.
 

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I live right by this rail line so I definitely have a bit of NIMBYism going on with this, but I see no good coming from bringing this line back on.

There was a good reason that the line was shut down in 97, at the time it was said it was the highest cost of maintenance line in the US and the most dangerous, with a couple major derailments. One of which dumped 3 cola cars just down steam of hecla junction, I don't remember how long it took for the river to not run black but it took some time. I can't imagine what would happen if it was oil instead of coal.

I encourage you all to do some research on the oil coming out of the Uinta Basin that this train wants to carry, they are trying to build a new line through that area utilizing grant money that is not intended to subsidize the oil and gas industry but instead is meant for a replacement of lost tax dollars for new schools and hospitals in those areas. This would be an entirely new line and not refurbing an old line.

Plus the areas that the Tennessee pass line will pass through has changed quite a bit since 97, more housing, development and recreation has been added that a train running through will negatively impact, just not river runners. If you have ever hiked or mountain biked the S Mountain trails in Salida from downtown which has a huge economic impact for Salida, you would no longer be able to access those from downtown without trespassing (technically you are trespassing now) but nobody cares and enforces that. In the 90's that area was not developed to the extent it is now.

The one positive that I see out of this is when the train ran and we had an emergency on the river we could call a train car in to help with evacuating a patient, as well as to others points this would take some trucks off the highways as well, but I still do not feel that is enough to warrant this line being opened up.

The Royal Gorge scenic railway is also opposed to this as they have rights and agreements in place already between them and Rock n Roll for that portion of the line.

The argument for this to be a passenger rail is intriguing but have anyone priced out a train ticket, it is often times way more expensive to travel by rail than to fly. As well as infrastructure needs to be built like train stations which cost money, it is estimated at $250M to refurbish the line without even adding passenger infrastructure.

Sorry for the long rambling.
 

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I live right by this rail line so I definitely have a bit of NIMBYism going on with this, but I see no good coming from bringing this line back on.

There was a good reason that the line was shut down in 97, at the time it was said it was the highest cost of maintenance line in the US and the most dangerous, with a couple major derailments. One of which dumped 3 cola cars just down steam of hecla junction, I don't remember how long it took for the river to not run black but it took some time. I can't imagine what would happen if it was oil instead of coal.

I encourage you all to do some research on the oil coming out of the Uinta Basin that this train wants to carry, they are trying to build a new line through that area utilizing grant money that is not intended to subsidize the oil and gas industry but instead is meant for a replacement of lost tax dollars for new schools and hospitals in those areas. This would be an entirely new line and not refurbing an old line.

Plus the areas that the Tennessee pass line will pass through has changed quite a bit since 97, more housing, development and recreation has been added that a train running through will negatively impact, just not river runners. If you have ever hiked or mountain biked the S Mountain trails in Salida from downtown which has a huge economic impact for Salida, you would no longer be able to access those from downtown without trespassing (technically you are trespassing now) but nobody cares and enforces that. In the 90's that area was not developed to the extent it is now.

The one positive that I see out of this is when the train ran and we had an emergency on the river we could call a train car in to help with evacuating a patient, as well as to others points this would take some trucks off the highways as well, but I still do not feel that is enough to warrant this line being opened up.

The Royal Gorge scenic railway is also opposed to this as they have rights and agreements in place already between them and Rock n Roll for that portion of the line.

The argument for this to be a passenger rail is intriguing but have anyone priced out a train ticket, it is often times way more expensive to travel by rail than to fly. As well as infrastructure needs to be built like train stations which cost money, it is estimated at $250M to refurbish the line without even adding passenger infrastructure.

Sorry for the long rambling.
Not rambling Sting - all good points and the type of discussion that needs to take place
 

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SarahofTheWaves
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Yes, Stinginrivers. Was thinking about the difference in the valley from 1997 until now. Just the fact of trains running through the area will create a mess and many complaints. I live in a town with trains running down the middle and across the town. Always a hassle, but the trains were here first, they say. In light of that, better to stop it now than try to mitigate later.
Not seeing high speed rail crossing Colorado at all. It would be Wyoming or New Mexico routes.
 

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I signed it...
 

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catraftyak
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I remember trying to shout paddle commands over the squeal of the trains going by on the curve during commercial trips during the mid 80s at Seidel's Suckhole. My vocal chords are still recovering.
Also had military jets fly within 200 feet of elevation directly above me going fast enough that you don't hear them until they are literally directly above you.
 

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Same thing guiding in the Royal Gorge, the customers couldn't hear you over the trains, and you were screaming as loud as you could. We transitioned to slapping the side of the raft with our guide sticks, one slap for "go", another for stop. Worked pretty well.

As to the planes, not had that happen on the Ark, but on Ruby Horsethief about 20 years ago, a Tomcat flew upstream about 5 feet off the water, we watched it come up the river for the 3 seconds it took to get to us, saw the pilot wave at us, before he stood the thing on it's wings, hit the afterburner and slid around the bend. Really something to see.
 

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I get that trains in the canyon suck, but if it wasn’t for the trains and their political clout, there would be dams at elephant rock, upper C, horse thief on lower C among other places, just sayin.
 

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Several people have expressed very well the negative impacts to recreation and the River.
There is also the impact of 10 trains per day (up to 100 cars each) slowly rolling thru our cities and towns. Traffic and noise, and more traffic and more noise! I signed!
 
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