Colorado Railroad Museum

Colorado Railroad Museum

Colorado Railroad Museum
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

Whether you are a train buff, photographer or just looking for something interesting to do for an afternoon, you will have a wonderful time at the Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden, Colorado.

The Colorado Railroad museum, which is deservedly one of the top 10 Denver attractions, will have you amazed at the vast array of railroad history on hand.

Colorado Railroad Museum
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Colorado Railroad Museum: Preserving Colorado railroad history

As the railroad industry declined in the 1940’s, Bob Richardson began collecting pieces of railroad history – rolling stock, equipment, records and memorabilia.

By 1958, his collection had outgrown its home in Alamosa, CO and the museum was moved to Golden, where a replica railroad depot was built for the museum’s main building in 1959.

Colorado Railroad Museum
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

Over the next five decades, the Colorado Railroad Museum grew to a collection of over 100 engines, cabooses and coaches on a 15 acre rail yard that includes the replica depot, a water tank, a G-scale garden railway, and working steam & diesel locomotives.

On the museum grounds is also the Robert H. Richardson Library, one of the largest railroad reference libraries in the U.S., with collections of rare photos, artifacts and documents and the Cornelius W. Hauk Restoration Roundhouse, a 5-bay roundhouse for railcar maintenance and restoration.

Colorado Railroad Museum
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Colorado Railroad Museum: Highlights

The Locomotives

Denver & Rio Grande Western No. 346, Colorado’s oldest operating steam locomotive
Denver & Rio Grande Western No. 346, Colorado’s oldest operating steam locomotive
Colorado Railroad Museum, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

 

Colorado Railroad Museum: Denver Leadville & Gunnison No. 191, the oldest steam locomotive in Colorado
Denver Leadville & Gunnison No. 191, the oldest steam locomotive in Colorado
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media
Colorado Railroad Museum: Denver & Rio Grande Western No. 5771, which powered the ski train from Denver to Winter Park until 1996
Denver & Rio Grande Western No. 5771, which powered the ski train from Denver to Winter Park until 1996
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media
Colorado Railroad Museum: Manitou & Pikes Peak No. 1, designed to climb steep mountain slopes and glades
Manitou & Pikes Peak No. 1, designed to climb steep mountain slopes and glades
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Passenger Cars

Colorado Railroad Museum
Colorado Midland, Observation Car No. 111
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media
Colorado Railroad Museum: Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe, Observation Car Navajo
Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe, Observation Car Navajo
Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

And much more…

Colorado Railroad Museum
Freight cars, Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media
Colorado Railroad Museum
Cabooses, Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media
The Ski Train, Colorado Railroad Museum
The Ski Train, Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media
Colorado Railroad Museum
Snow plows, Colorado Railroad Museum
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Colorado Railroad Museum: Special events & private parties

From a ride behind Thomas the Tank Engine™, to mailing a letter to Santa aboard the RPO railcar, the Colorado Railroad Museum has numerous themed and special events throughout the year including:

Ride the Rails Saturdays, Black History Month, Galloping Goose, RidesBunny Express, TrainTrick or Treat Train, Dinosaur Train, Santa Claus Special, and Day Out With Thomas.

The museum is also available for party rentals and private events.

Check the Colorado Railroad Museum website for specific dates, details and pricing information.

Colorado Railroad Museum: A preview

Location: 17155 West 44th Ave, Golden, CO 80403

Hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm daily, year round except Thanksgiving, Christmas Day & New Years Day

Phone: 303-279-4591, 800-365-6263

Golden, Coloradov

10 Things to do in Golden Colorado

Golden, Colorado
Golden, Colorado
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Golden, Colorado lies just west of Denver, nestled in the foothills of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains.

Founded in 1859, Golden is a charming small town with a rich western history and the home of the Coors brewery, which sits along the Clear Creek in the center of town.

Golden is a great place to visit, for a few days or a few hours, with plenty of activities, great patio dining, friendly locals and a vibrant downtown.

1. Visit the American Mountaineering Museum

American Mountaineering Museum, Golden, Colorado
American Mountaineering Museum, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

The first & only museum in the United States dedicated to the heroism, technology, culture and spirit of mountaineering, the American Mountain Museum is a must visit.  The museum has a wonderful collection of mountaineering artifacts & a large-scale Everest model.

2. Take a stroll along Clear Creek

Golden, Colorado
Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

The paths along Clear Creek offer a relaxing stroll to the sound of Clear Creek and a chance to explore a bit of Golden’s history. Check out the City of Golden’s website for a variety of choices and destinations in downtown Golden.

3. Visit the Colorado Railroad Museum

Colorado Railroad Museum, Golden, Colorado
Colorado Railroad Museum, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

Stroll the Colorado Railroad Museum’s 15-acre rail yard with over 100 narrow and standard gauge steam and diesel locomotives, passenger cars, cabooses, HO Model Railroad and G-scale garden railway.

4. Have a picnic in the park

Parfet Park, Golden, Colorado
Parfet Park, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

Grab a sandwich and head down to Parfet Park. The park is great place to enjoy nature, people watch, read a book or throw a Frisbee. Parfet Park is located at Washington & 10th in Golden.

5. Tour the Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum

Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum, Golden, Colorado
Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

The Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum displays mineral, fossil, gemstone, meteorite and historic mining artifacts & is home to a Goodwill moon rock collected during the Apollo 17 mission.

6. Take a hike

Golden Colorado Things to Do

Golden Gate Canyon has 35 miles of hiking trails with 12 trails, each named after an animal and marked with the animal’s footprint.  Golden Gate Canyon Park is located 13 miles west of Golden on Golden Gate Canyon Road.

7. Tour the Coors Brewery

Miller-Coors Brewery, Golden, Colorado
Miller-Coors Brewery, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

Tour the world’s largest single-site brewery on a 30-minute self-paced tour highlighting Coor’s malting, brewing and packaging processes, then cool off in the “fresh beer room,” and sip a cold sample.

8. Enjoy an afternoon in downtown Golden

Golden, Colorado
Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

With 60+ stores with offerings ranging from mountain bikes, to clothing from the Himalayas, to a mining cart, you are sure to find it in Golden’s quaint shops. Enjoy a beer or ice cream on a patio, admire the statues, and do some people watching in historic Golden.

9. Pay Buffalo Bill a visit

Buffalo Bill is buried at the top of Lookout Mountain, just west of downtown Golden. The Buffalo Bill Museum has a number of permanent exhibits about Buffalo Bill’s life and Buffalo Bill’s grave site overlooks the Great Plains and the Rockies.

Buffalo Bill's gravesite, Golden, Colorado
Buffalo Bill’s gravesite, Golden, Colorado
Photo: Kim Hull © Chasing Light Media

10. Ride a bike

Golden is cycling community, so whether your preference is road cycling or mountain biking, you will find great trails and lots of company.  Stop in a local bike store for info & to rent a bike or grab the trail map published by the City of Golden and take a spin.

Ride a bike in Golden, Colorado
Ride a bike in Golden, Colorado
Photo: Greg K. Hull © Chasing Light Media

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