Colorado, Destinations, North America

The Georgetown Loop Railroad

Look at those gorgeous colors! 

Colorado is stunning in the fall. I dare say it is the most beautiful time of the year in The Centennial State. I’m a little biased, because my birthday is in October so everything about this time of the year feels magical.

Fall Foliage in Colorado

In August, I told my husband that I wanted to ride The Georgetown Loop Railroad with him, my mom and my dad. It was the one thing I wanted to do this year for my birthday.

That evening, just hours after telling my husband my birthday wish, I found out that my mother had passed away.

Naturally I started to go through all of the places I wanted to go with her, the experiences I wished we had. I cried thinking about my birthday and The Georgetown Loop Railroad. Just another thing we will never do together, I thought.

Colorado Hikes.jpg

Fall Leaves in Colorado

For awhile, I didn’t want to go on The Georgetown Loop Railroad because I thought it might remind me too much of my mother. In fact, I had decided to “cancel” my birthday this year altogether because it felt like it was going to be too hard without her.

In grief counseling I have learned to look at things through my mother’s eyes. She wouldn’t want me to put my life on hold. She wouldn’t want me to skip my birthday. She would want me to have fun and live my life, experiencing these things as if she were beside me.

So that’s what we did. Here are some tips if you choose to visit the Georgetown Loop Railroad.

Colorado river in the fall

Georgetown Loop Railroad and the Fall Foliage

First of all, let me start by saying that this was 100% worth it. This has been a bucket list item of mine for a long time because I hear so many great things about it. I would recommend The Georgetown Loop Railroad to everyone looking for a fun way to see the fall colors. In fact, I wrote about it here in my 7 unique ways to see Colorado’s fall foliage blog.

Georgetown Railroad tickets to buy

What to Wear in Georgetown, Colorado

Pro tip: It’s cold up here! I didn’t know that this was an open-air train and didn’t bring a jacket. Big mistake. I ended up running back in to the shop to purchase a hoodie. I looked like such a tourist riding the Georgetown Loop in my Georgetown Loop jacket. At least the conductor got a kick out of it!

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Railroad in Georgetown Colorado

Georgetown Loop Railroad Length

The loop is about an hour and a half long and stops in Silver Plume to drop off and pick up more passengers. Our train was packed! It got a little frustrating at times being so close to other people. My advice is to claim your territory quickly and don’t be afraid to spread out a bit. Otherwise, you’ll be tucked in like sardines unable to take quality photos.

The trees were beautiful though they still have a week or so until they’ll be fully yellow at this elevation (about 8,000 ft).

Trains near Denver Colorado

Georgetown loop railroad train

When I was very young, my mom told me that while she was pregnant with me she would sit on the couch and look out her living room picture window at the ash tree. She would think, “When the leaves fall off of the tree, my baby will be born.”

Each year, close to my birthday, my mom would call and say, “Emma, I’m looking out the window at the old ash tree, when all of the leaves fall off the tree my baby will have her birthday.”

Each year around this time I will look at the leaves changing and hear my mom’s voice. Birthdays will be difficult without her, but I stand by what I said: everything about this time of the year feels magical.

Georgetown Colorado in the fall

Thanks for reading,


Things to know before going on the Georgetown Loop Railroad

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