I’ve been photographing Heritage Railroads for the better part of 15 years. Colorado has a number of vintage narrow gauge railroads so I’ve been lucky in that regard.
One of my favorite trains to photograph is the Durango & Silverton NGRR, which runs between the towns of Silverton and Durango in the San Juan Mountains.
This photograph was taken in late September of 2018 as one of these steam trains was arriving into Silverton. It was a blustery day with clouds and spitting rain, however, the mission had been planned and there was no turning back.
The conversion to a sepia tone gives this vintage steam train an “old timey” feel, as these narrow gauge trains ran throughout the San Juan Mountains a hundred years ago and I like the vintage atmosphere the sepia effect gives to these types of photos.
At the time this photo was taken, the railroad was running two trains per day about 45 minutes apart. We stalked out a location and the possible compositions for both trains arriving and departing Silverton, giving us four different takes on this historic train.
This particular image was the first train arriving into Silverton that day.