Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Antonito in Conejos County, Colorado — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

Cumbres Pass

 
 
Cumbres Pass Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
1. Cumbres Pass Marker
Inscription.  
This memorial is the
property of the State of Colorado


Cumbres Pass
Near Continental Divide between the
waters of the Rio Grande and the San Juan
”Cumbres” is Spanish for “Summits”

Altitude 10,022 Feet
Railroad built 1880
Tollroad built 1881
Improved highway opened 1923

Erected by
The State Historical Society of Colorado
from
the Mrs. J.N. Hall Foundation
and by the State Highway Department
and the U.S. Forest Service
1929

 
Erected 1929 by The State Historical Society of Colorado, State Highway Department, and the U.S. Forest Service.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Notable PlacesRailroads & StreetcarsRoads & Vehicles. A significant historical year for this entry is 1880.
 
Location. 37° 1.15′ N, 106° 26.919′ W. Marker is near Antonito, Colorado, in Conejos County. Marker is on State Highway 17, 12 miles south of County Road 128, on the left when traveling
Cumbres Pass Marker (<i>wide view; Colorado Highway 17 in background</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
2. Cumbres Pass Marker (wide view; Colorado Highway 17 in background)
Click or scan to see
this page online
north. Marker is located on the west side of the highway, at the north end of the Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot parking lot. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Antonito CO 81120, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 4 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named Cumbres Pass (approx. 3.3 miles away in New Mexico); Chama (approx. 10.8 miles away in New Mexico); Old Spanish Trail (approx. 12 miles away in New Mexico); a different marker also named Chama (approx. 13.2 miles away in New Mexico).
 
More about this marker. Marker is a large metal plaque mounted vertically on a 4-foot tall granite boulder.
 
Also see . . .  Cumbres Pass. The railroad line was built in the early 1880s by the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad as part of their San Juan Extension line from Alamosa, Colorado to Durango, Colorado. The railroad has a steep (for a railroad) 4% grade approaching from the west, so additional helper locomotives were usually run (and often still are) on trains from Chama to Cumbres Pass. The facilities at the pass were built by the railroad to support the turning of the helper locomotives for their return to Chama, and provide water to locomotives after the climb. Some of the structures at the pass, including the station building, were demolished when the highway was realigned. Regular passenger service was provided by the San Juan Express, running from Alamosa to Durango, and was discontinued in 1951, although numerous rail-fan specials
Cumbres Pass Marker (<i>wide view of marker at north end of parking lot as train arrives</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
3. Cumbres Pass Marker (wide view of marker at north end of parking lot as train arrives)
operated over the line until the Fall of 1967. Freight service on the line ended in 1968 and since 1970 the railroad from Chama to Antonito has been owned and operated by the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad which operates trains over the pass during the tourist season. (Submitted on October 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
4. Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot
Train Arriving Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
5. Train Arriving Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot
Train Departing Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 12, 2013
6. Train Departing Cumbres Pass Railroad Depot
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 1, 2018. It was originally submitted on October 26, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 170 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on October 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.

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Jan. 21, 2022