2017 USA Eclipse

BNSF 5871 and UP 7067 at Bill, Wyoming on June 20, 2013 - © J E Landrum
BNSF 9196 at Bill, Wyoming on June 21, 2013 - © J E Landrum
BNSF 9225 at Bill, Wyoming on June 21, 2013 - © J E Landrum
BNSF 9846 at Bill, Wyoming on June 21, 2013 - © J E Landrum
Denver - © Alan Heywood
Denver State Capitol - © Alan Heywood
Denver - © Alan Heywood
9 and 21 - © Georgetown Loop Railroad and Mining Park
12 with yellow cars - © Georgetown Loop Railroad and Mining Park
Mule Deer at Bill, Wyoming on June 19, 2013 - © J E Landrum
UP 5595 eastbound at Bill, Wyoming on June 19, 2013 - © J E Landrum
UP 5901 at Bill, Wyoming on June 18, 2013 - © J E Landrum
UP 7977 at Bill, Wyoming on June 19, 2013 - © J E Landrum

Holiday Highlights

  • A chance to see a rare total solar eclipse
  • Ride the Georgetown Loop Railroad
  • Stay in America's "Railroad Capital", Cheyenne
  • Coal trains in Powder River Basin
  • Colorado Railroad Museum
  • 8 days from £1,830pp
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Tour Dates:
Wednesday 16 August to Wednesday 23 August 2017

This USA Eclipse tour combines some substantial railway content with the opportunity to view a rare, total solar eclipse stateside on 21st August 2017. Fly to Denver and enjoy a journey on the Georgetown Loop, a stay in America’s ‘Railroad Capital’, Cheyenne, a visit to the Ames Monument and the busy transport hub Powder River Basin from where you will view the eclipse. This tour highlights Ffestiniog Travel’s expertise in arranging tours that fulfil the main purpose as well as including wider elements to ensure a comprehensive holiday.

ITINERARY

Day 1 – Fly to Denver

Fly from Manchester airport to Denver with a change of flight en route. Collect a hire car and drive to your hotel. Accommodation for three nights in Denver.

Day 2 – Denver

Recover from your long day and flights yesterday with a day at leisure in Denver. You may wish to visit the Forney Museum of Transportation, a one-of-a-kind collection of over 600 artefacts relating to historical transportation, including a Big Boy locomotive.

Day 3 – Georgetown Loop

Drive out to the Georgetown Loop for a ride on this spectacular stretch of three-foot narrow gauge railroad. Why not include a mine tour, or an hour with a guide at Silver Plume Station, who will be able to explain a little history and escort you to take photos in a few areas where most guests are not allowed. Return to Denver via the Colorado Railroad Museum where you will find a 15-acre rail yard with over 100 narrow and standard gauge steam and diesel locomotives, passenger cars and cabooses.

Day 4 – Cheyenne

Drive north about 100 miles today to America's "Railroad Capital", Cheyenne, state capital of Wyoming. Why not choose to take a ride on the Cheyenne Street Railway Trolley or visit the Depot Museum housed in the former Union Pacific Depot. The Depot is the last of the grand 19th Century depots remaining on the transcontinental railroad and one of the best articulated examples of the Richardsonian Romanesque style in the West. Visit the steam locomotives preserved in parks around the city. Accommodation for two nights in Cheyenne.

Day 5 – Cheyenne

Take a drive a little way west to view the Ames Monument, a 60 foot high granite pyramid located in south eastern Albany County. It is dedicated to Oakes Ames and Oliver Ames, two Massachusetts brothers who were extremely influential in constructing the nation’s first Transcontinental Railroad. You may wish to take a Sunday lunch train tour to the bison herd at the Terry Bison Ranch.

Day 6 – Powder River Basin and Total Eclipse

Head north today into the rail fan paradise of Powder River Basin. Around 80 trains a day of up to 150 coal wagons, each train over a mile long are hauled through the basin by a mixture of huge locomotives. The eclipse will begin at 1223 local time today and we recommend positioning yourself at least 9 miles south of Bill in order to view the total eclipse which will continue for almost 3 hours in total. Stay overnight in Bill, Wyoming, an unincorporated community which more than doubled in population from 5 to 11 when a hotel and 24 hour diner were built in 2008 primarily for rail road employees between shifts.

Day 7 – Douglas

Return south today. On your way back to Denver call in at the Douglas Railroad Interpretive Center which has an open-air exhibit featuring a CB&Q locomotive, with tender and seven cars. Included in the collection are several streamline passenger cars and a dining car from the post-1930s passenger era. Choose from two downtown restaurants in the Douglas community offering train themed menus. Viewing a jackalope is also a 'must do' whilst in Douglas. Overnight in Denver.

Day 8 – Homeward Bound

Return to Denver airport for a mid morning flight home arriving back in Manchester early on Thursday. Includes one change of flight en route.

Ffestiniog Travel cannot guarantee that participants will be able to see the total eclipse, owing to the local weather conditions on the day. In August temperatures in Wyoming usually vary from a low of 12°C to a high of 27°C; around 50mm of rain usually falls over the month of August with 11 days of precipitation and 297 hours of sunshine. During August the sky is usually mostly clear with around 35% cloud cover on average.

Selected Hotels

Comfort Inn Central, Denver

Best Western Hitching Post Inn Resort, Cheyenne

Oak Tree Inn, Bill

Country Inn & Suites Denver Intl. Airport

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • Flights from Manchester
  • Car hire including full protection which covers all exterior and mechanical damage, as well as breakdown and admin charges, full to full fuel policy, Collision Damage Waiver,  Theft Protection,  unlimited mileage, local taxes
  • Seven nights’ accommodation in double rooms on room only basis
  • Georgetown Loop Railroad tickets

Price per person

From £1,830 per person sharing

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