ALBUQUERQUE BALLOON FIESTA
Private Car Excursion
Chicago to Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, Cumbres & Tolted Scenic Railroad, Kansas City, St Louis, Chicago
Join private cars BERLIN and FRANK THOMSON (ex 1949 PRR blunt end sleeper lounge observation) for this once-in-a-lifetime seven day scenic excursion from Chicago to Albuquerque and return. Our trip is timed to coincide with the changing Fall colors, so breathtaking views can be experienced. Amtrak has only committed to operating the Southwest Chief until the end of 2019. Come ride with us and celebrate this scenic route of the Santa Fe Super Chief while we can. Only 8 rooms are being sold, so this will be an exclusive trip limited to only 16 passengers.
Friday October 11 – Our private cars depart Chicago at 3pm behind Amtrak’s Southwest Chief with a Welcome Aboard get together and light snacks. Dinner will be served as our train heads west. Enjoy the passing scenery from the observation lounge right behind the locomotive! The curved rear side windows of the FRANK THOMSON allow for limited forward viewing unavailable with traditional flat sided windows! Enjoy an evening nightcap before retiring to your private room to experience being rocked to sleep by rhythm of the rails.
Saturday October 12 - Wake up to the ever changing scenery of western Kansas where passengers can sometimes see prairie dogs at play! A fresh cup of coffee and breakfast will be waiting for you in the Frank Thomson lounge, or you can choose to sleep in! Time to set your watch back an hour as Mountain Time is entered, and roll into views of the Rocky Mountains in southern Colorado. Lunch will be served while you enjoy the stunning scenery of northern New Mexico, including the Raton Tunnel and mountain streams, with captivating views from the train's big picture windows. Late afternoon, the train arrives in Lamy, the station stop for Santa Fe, and later at our destination in Albuquerque.
Time for the Balloon Fiesta! Dinner is on your own while you attend the evening program which includes static displays of illuminated balloons known as “Balloon Glows”, (among the Balloon Fiesta’s most popular events) as well as a Fireworks Display. Our rail cars will be waiting for you at the station with beds turned down ready for you to retire for the night. You will avoid the hassle of checking in and out of hotels!
Sunday October 13 - Rise early to be at the Balloon Fiesta for the 6:00am Dawn Patrol Show, 6:30 Morning Glow, 6:30 Laser Light Show, and 7:00 Farewell Mass Ascension. The remainder of the day is free to explore Albuquerque, famous for its Pueblo Revival architecture and New Mexican cuisine. Overnight on the rail cars parked at the Amtrak Albuquerque station.
Monday October 14 – Rise and shine for an early breakfast before our 6am departure as we travel via a 20 passenger minibus to Antonito, CO and the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Steam Railroad to experience the sights and sounds (and cinders!) of an operating steam locomotive! Climb aboard this National Historic Landmark for a 64-mile day trip you’ll never forget. A coal-fired steam engine will carry you through steep mountain canyons, high desert, and lush meadows as you zig zag between the Colorado and New Mexico border. Open your eyes to spectacular and rare Western scenery which can only be viewed from our train’s unique route. The train will stop at historic Osier, CO for a delicious buffet lunch , included in the ticket price. Our steam trip concludes at Chama, NM where our minibus will pick us up and return to Albuquerque with a stop for dinner on our own (at a site to be determined). Sleep overnight on the rail cars.
Tuesday October 15 – Wake up to a Continental Breakfast and free time this morning as we prepare for our Albuquerque departure at 12:10pm.
For the remainder of our trip to Chicago, the observation end of the FRANK THOMSON will be at the very end of the train, where you can take in a panoramic view of the ever changing scenery as it vanishes behind us! The northern New Mexico scenery attracts attention through the afternoon. Sunset begins to fall in southern Colorado after the train crosses Raton Tunnel into Colorado. Lunch and Dinner will be served en route. Retreat to the comfort of your private room as the Southwest Chief crosses through the plains of Kansas overnight.
Wednesday October 16 – Passengers are awakened to views of the Kaw River just east of Topeka, Kan., and in Lawrence, Kan., home of the University of Kansas. Our train pulls into Kansas City's historic Union Station later that morning where our cars will be switched from the train and parked. You will be treated to some world famous Kansas City Barbeque at the Jack Stack Steakhouse - Freight House. Both cars will eventually be coupled to the end of Train #316 Missouri River Runner for 4:00PM departure. We travel along the scenic Missouri River on our way to St. Louis(home of the famous Gateway Arch and Anheiser Busch brewery), where we will be parked for the night.
Thursday October 17 - Am early 6:40 AM departure allows for a leisurely breakfast as our Lincoln Service train departs St. Louis. Lunch will be served en route as we cross Illinois. Our train is scheduled to reach its final destination of Chicago at 12:20PM. Goodbyes will be said as all passengers will disembark at Chicago Union Station with many fine memories of our trip.
PRICING - $4250 per person, double occupancy. Only 8 rooms are being offerred, so this will be an exclusive trip limited to only 16 passengers.
Pricing includes all chef prepared meals enroute and all breakfasts when parked, all overnght accommodations, Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad tickets in Deluxe Tourist Car, minibus transportation to and from C&TSRR, Jack Stack Steakhouse dinner, and steward services. Pricing does not include meals on your own or gratuities for crew.
PAYMENT - Check or Money Order made out to Deep River Rail Ventures, LLC and mailed to Kevin Moore, Deep River Rail Ventures, LLC
167 Cobblestone Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15237
Questions or payment by credit card contact: