Saturday, May 22, 2021

AND UP THE MOUNTAIN WE GO - Pikes Peak Cog Railway

Post by Doris McCraw

writing as Angela Raines

With Colorado Springs celebrating its sesquicentennial this year, I will periodically be posting about the city and region. Earlier I posted about the Trolley Museum: Found Here. What makes this post so much fun for me is the resource I found for the article and the fact that the Cog Railway is opening up again after almost four years.

An early photo of the cog railway

The Railway closed in October of 2017 for maintenance. The closure was longer than anyone expected. The re-opening coincides closely with the opening of a new Summit House at the top of the mountain. To me, there is nothing like riding up the side of the mountain to be greeted by views that take your breath away. 

But what about the beginnings. This article found in the "Cow-Boy Round-Up" was quite interesting. I'm sure they had high hopes for the publication, but I've only found one issue. As for the railway system, it didn't begin its climb up to the summit of the mountain until June 30, 1891.

Below is a short piece the publication included in that issue:

The Cow-Boy Round-Up is issued not only for the interest of the cowboy club but in the interest of the great and growing city of Denver, Colorado. The reader will find much interesting information regarding this wonderful city in this issue.

I'm not sure where this photo came from
but I had to share

And the following is the one on the railway.

To the top of Pike's Peak.

Colorado is bound to be the Mecca of tourists in the United States. A few days ago, a most important transaction took place, which will advertise Colorado all over the world. The transaction was nothing more or less than the taking up of the remaining stock in the Pike's Peak railroad company, a corporation that can now boast of a half million of capital, placed principally with Chicago capitalist. Within a few weeks, this corporation will commence breaking ground for one of the most novel railways in the United States — a cog-wheel road from Manitou to the top of Pike's Peak. The road will be 9 miles long, and will run straight up the face of the mountain. The trip to the top will be made in an hour and a half, thus enabling tourists to ascend to the top of the Peak and return between meals. At present, the traveled road is twenty-four miles long, and an entire day is generally taken for the trip. It will take the entire summer to build the road, but when completed, it will be solid, substantial, and safe. (Denver Journal of Commerce.) 

The Cow-Boy Round-Up, Volume 1, Number 1, March 4, 1889

The author's photo from one of the cog trips

I hope you enjoyed my trip back and how things may have changed, but still stay the same. Until next time.
 For more information on the process

Cog Railway History

Doris Gardner-McCraw -
Author, Speaker, Historian-specializing in
Colorado and Women's History
Author of the 'Agate Gulch' series of novellas and the 'Kiowa Wells' series of novels
Angela Raines - author: Telling Stories Where Love & History Meet
Angela Raines FaceBook: Click Here

(c) 2021 Doris McCraw All Rights Reserved.

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