Marshall Pass Snowshed, 1880

By Brent Burger; posted January 5, 2003

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To gain access to the San Luis Valley, the D&RG headed west over 10,000+ foot Marshall Pass in 1879. The eastern approach was a lark, compared to the western side. Grades were no less than 4% for much of the route, forcing freight drags to be cut into short sections to be hauled to the top and reassembled before proceeding east. Here we are looking at a train stopped inside the recently completed summit snowshed. Note train is double headed to tackle the grades with this multi-car consist.