We drove to Williams AZ with Jo’s sister and brother-in-law, Barbara and Mike Williams, on Feb 13 to ride the Grand Canyon RY up to the Grand Canyon on February 14. The railroad had a special offer for the day we could not refuse! The 1912 price for the round trip ride was $7.50, and that was the price for our centennial trip. The ride was a sellout, with 1200 passengers in 12 coaches, including all of its Pullman-built coach cars made in 1923. The railroad could not add any more cars to the train for lack of passenger loading and unloading track length at both ends. There was snow on the ground at both ends of the trip.
Here is the interior of our coach. Mike Williams is in the lower right corner.
To help passengers while away the time in the 2:15 hour ride, the road ordinarily provides musicians walking through the cars.
As we neared the Grand Canyon, the snow became deeper with the increasing elevation. The train was pulled by a steam locomotive helped by two diesel units.
Two of the road’s newer higher fare cars brought up the rear of the train, here unloading at the Grand Canyon Depot.
Our first stop was the main dining room at the historic El Tovar hotel for a gourmet lunch. I am at the left, with Jo, Barbara and Mike Williams, and Jerry and Nancy Grout.
Our 3:15 hour layover gave us time to walk along the rim of the canyon to take in interesting sights as the high clouds created moving patterns in the canyon.
The long Bright Angel Canyon comes south from the north rim to meet the Colorado River in its inner gorge. I watched snow flurries making their way down the side canyon.
Snow flurries from scattered clouds are spreading over the Grand Canyon, blocking the view of upper Bright Angel Canyon.
We had the opportunity at Grand Canyon to get a good look at the motive power for our train.This was the first revenue run for steam locomotive 4960, a 2-8-2 Mikado, after a major overhaul in the Grand Canyon Railway shop in Williams.
The two diesel units helping the steamer were made by EMD and were built for AMTRAK.
Members of the Winslow AZ Harvey Girls Club provided special entertainment on our trip by giving kisses (Hershey) to the passengers.
The last entertainment was a train robbery, done on every trip made by the GCRY.
We returned the Valley on Feb. 15 via Chino Valley and Prescott. A group of school children was at the Yavapai County Courthouse which featured a display of a new postage stamp celebrating the Arizona centennial.