Sunday, November 7, 2010

Back in the Saddle Again: At Rollins Pass

Rollins Pass was the original trail across the Indian Peaks to Middle Park. At 11,660 (3554m) it was never an easy journey.  Wagons began crossing the Pass in 1862, and in the 1870's John Rollins constructed a toll road, The Old Boulder Wagon Road.   This was superceeded by a temporary railroad line begun in 1902 and completed in 1904.  Conditions for work crews were so bad that they were paid the outrageous wage of $3.43 per day to work through the winter.

This is a view of the Riflesight Notch.  The collapsed area in the middle of the image was the location of a tunnel. East bound trains came through the tunnel, circled around the mountain, and crossed the railroad trestle heading towards the top of the Pass.

This was the highest railroad traversed pass in America until it closed in 1928 with the completion of the 6.2 mile long Moffat Tunnel.

Swiss designed Mallet locomotives were the only type that could traverse the sometimes > 4% grades.  Four to five locomotives might be used to cross the pass.  In winter each train was preceded by a rotary snow plow.  But sometimes they were still trapped at the top in in snow tens of feet deep. See modern rotary snow-plow videos.

This was my semi-final roll of E100GX.  I still have one more roll left and three more photos to shoot.  Then I will put E6 film to rest  and probably never shoot it again.

More from Rollins Pass later this week...........

1 comment:

  1. A simple sunflare turned into something really bizarre in the image above. I'll have to look into this.....