Display on Santa Fe’s Rail Trails in El Museo Cultural at the Railyard, Sept. 15-16





In conjunction with the inaugural “New Mexico Railroad History Celebration,” SFCT’s Trails Program Manager organized four mini-cruises and two “Explore More” cruises by bicycle of active and historic rail alignments around Santa Fe.  For the main event at El Museo Cultural on Sept. 15-16, SFCT also had a display table with information, photos, and other materials on “SFCT and the Rail Trail,” GUSTO, “Rails and Trails in New Mexico and Santa Fe,” and possibilities for new trails on or along abandoned rail lines in our area.  Some of the material was drawn from a presentation at the “Building Creative Communities Conference” in 2015 entitled Rail Trails as Creative Heritage Trails.

Participants meet NM Railroad History Celebration organizer Jim Terhune outside of El Museo before one of the rail history cruises

Four “mini-cruises” traced the historic routes of the Chili Line and the New Mexico Central Railroad (NMCRR) during the main weekend event while longer versions of the bicycle rides followed on the next two Saturdays.  The “Explore More NMCRR” cruise on Sept. 22 made it as far south as the Arroyo Hondo in Oshara.  From there, the railbed can be linked with existing SFCC and Rancho Viejo trails for a greater NM Central Rail Trail concept, the subject of an earlier GUSTO study ride back in 2016.  The “Explore More Chili Line” cruise on Sept. 29 visited past and future GUSTO demonstration projects, including the “Dog Park Connector” and the location of a possible Chili Line Interpretive Trail in La Tierra Trails.

NMCRR – Joining the parade to celebrate the Railyard Park’s 10th Anniversary in the Acequia Trail underpass under St. Francis Dr.

NMCRR: This part of the Acequia Trail is also a rail trail

NMCRR’s first stop on the schedule at Crandall Station, now the back of the Kiva shopping center, serving the Santa Fe Indian School

NMCRR historic route sends the Arroyo de los Pinos to the southwest at Hopewell and 6th

NMCRR: The “Explore More” ride on Sept. 22 visits the last remaining pieces of raised railbed (in foreground) and cut (in background) to be found within city limits

NMCRR cut at Rabbit Rd. south of I-25, the vicinity of the NMCRR’s second stop out of Santa Fe, at “Donaciana”

NMCRR cruisers at the Arroyo Hondo in Oshara, railbed in background

NMCRR: The possibility of extending an NMCRR trail south of Rancho Viejo, as viewed in a GUSTO study ride in 2016, is now being examined by County planners

Also part of the NMCRR tours, the Bruns General Hospital Line just off the Rail Trail is slated to be leveled for a housing subdivision

“Test yourself on New Mexico’s Rail History” at the Santa Fe Depot

“Re-enactment” of a famous photo and painting of the Chili Line crossing the Santa Fe River on Guadalupe

This stretch of the Chili Line (Guadalupe St.) will have bike lanes by late 2019

Carlos Gilbert Elementary School, former location of the Chili Line’s railyard

Chili Line: Rio Grande Ave. is named for the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad where it began its climb out of Santa Fe

View (barely) of the Manderfield Mausoleum, far left, which is featured in a famous Chili Line photo taken from St. Catherine’s Indian School (far right)

Pointing out the cut and arroyo crossing where the Chili line passed near the Frank Ortiz Dog Park

Dog Park Connector Trail, Part 1 of 2 – a humble GUSTO Demonstration Project built by volunteers, at no cost to the City

Cruising along the Chili Line near the Buckman Motocross Track in La Tierra Trails

Chili Line near La Tierra Trails: Best “rail-to-trail” in northern NM!

Paseo de Vista: Chili line cruises charted new territory on the way back to the Railyard via the River Trail