Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sugar Tramp: Colorado's Great Western Railway

A helpful reader tipped me off to this excellent book about the history of the Great Western Sugar Company's railroad company, but he wasn't sure of the author's name. The book's full information is:
Sugar Tramp: Colorado's Great Western Railway
by Gary Morgan
Centennial Publications, Ft. Collins, Colorado

It's out of print but luckily available in local libraries. If yours doesn't have it, an inter-library loan should work for you. In addition to covering the Dinkies mentioned earlier, the book is full of maps, detailed history, sample timetables, passenger car information, and the story of their steam to diesel transition. Railfans will greatly appreciate the complete numbered inventory of all of GW's steam locomotives, including pictures.

The Great Western Railway Company (GWRC) had tracks connecting their Longmont, Loveland, Windsor, Johnstown, and Eaton sugar factories. Longmonters can still see the tracks heading to Mead, like for example over in the Union Reservoir area. If you remember Highland Lake, their town diminished in population after GWRC decided to route their tracks through nearby Mead. And you might have read the other day, in the Times-Call Johnny St. Vrain column, that some of the GW railroad is being used these days to park train cars that are idle due to the slow economy.

A great book.

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