The 28th Annual AAPRCO Convention Train

The Arizona Limited
Updated 2/21/06

October 1-2, 2005. Private Party Car Pony Express and private cars Scottish Thistle, Pacific Sands, Silver Iris and City of Spokane operated from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, NM on the rear of Amtrak's Southwest Chief. On arrival at Albuquerque we joined up with the 17 car Convention Train which had arrived from Chicago earlier in the day. With all 22 cars coupled together, the Arizona Limited departed Albuquerque for Lamy where we left the BNSF mainlineto travel over the Santa Fe Southern Railway to Santa Fe, NM where we were spotted in front of the depot for two nights. Several guests traveled by bus to Chama, NM for a train ride on the Cumbres and Toltec Narrow Gauge Railroad,. Others stayed in town to shop and visit the local restaurants and museums


October 2 -The Arizona Limited assembled and being serviced in Albuquerque, NM


October 4 - to Lamy on the Santa Fe Southern


The "Flintstone House" near Lamy, NM


Pueblo Domingo - an ancient Indian Pueblo that is still occupied and the scene of many
traditional religious ceremonies

On arrival back in Albuquerque the Arizona Limited was inspected and serviced while we waited for a rested crew to take us to Williams, AZ. We departed Albuquerque late in the afternoon and travelled overnight arriving at Williams in the wee hours of Wednesday the 5th. Several guests got an early morning start for a bus ride to cottonwood, AZ and a scenic train ride on the Verde Canyon Railway


Along the east approach to the Verde Canyon


Arizona Limited guests enjoy the scenery from an airconditioned lounge car


The Verde River Canyon, lots of wildlife to be seen

 
Colorful rock formations viewed from an open excursion car


Perkinsville, the turn araound point for the trip.

Thursday, the 6th our private train took us on a journey from Williams, AZ to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon for a late breakfast/early lunch at the El Tovar Hotel, some sightseeing, hiking and shopping at Hopi House.


North of Williams on the Grand Canyon Railway - Pinion trees take over from the Ponderosas as the elevation drops.


The vast, open rangeland of the Coconino plain.


Pony guest enjoy the scenery as we approach the Grand Canyon Station

A Glimpse of the Canyon as our train pulls into the station


We enjoyed a late breakfast/early lunch in the dining room of the El Tovar Hotel, a former
Santa Fe Railway Harvey House


Departing the Canyon and heading back to Williams

Thursday evening we participated in the first of two Convention Car Parties. These parties are a tradition with AAPRCO. The first night half of the cars are open for convention attendees as well as those riding the train to tour the train to see what the various cars are like inside and visit with the owners and friends. This year the Pony served as the Dance Car and aattendies learned what the Pony is really all about. Ithe first party was so successful that the Pony was open for the second car party on Friday night. We partied long and hearty both nights.


Party on the Pony

On Friday the 7th our train took us on a rare mileage journey from Williams to Phoenix over BNSF's "Peavine" route via Ash Fork, Skull Valley and Wickenburg.


Departing Williams for Ash Fork on the "Peavine" route. 

Saturday and Sunday, the8th and 9th were reserved for Convetion activities at the Grand Canyon Railway's Frei Marcos Hotel. Departure for the return to Albuquerque was scheduled for earl Monday morning. The plan was that the train would arrive in Albuwurque early enough for the cars going to Los Angeles to be put on the rear of that day's Southest Chief. However, a derailment near Holbrook, AZ stopped all traffic and we spent another day in Williams. The line opened up later that afternoon and we departed Williams about sunset. This delayed our departure from Albuquerque by a day. For the return trip to Los Angeles we were joined by two cars which had come out from Chicago, the Federal and the Burrard. The City of Spokane went onto Chicago with the special train


The Pony Express in Albuquerque waiting for the Southwest Chief

 
Watching the New Mexico countryside go by from the Pony


Sunset near Laguna, NM 


Six PV's heading west on the rear of the Southwest Chief


Dusk


October 12 - our cars get a much needed wash following arrival back in Los Angeles