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 Tourist Guide Book Description... Geologic Survey Description...

 

royal gorge chasm hr.jpg (53649 bytes)
Gorge Chasm c1900

 

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Royal Gorge, CO

Stunning scenery through this mountain chasm is at easy access in one of the most developed parks in the country. You can ride the train, drive over the bridge, hang in cable cars and take a number of other high flying adventures.

This gash in the earths crust developed by the action of the Arkansas River upon the front range of the rockies as they rose up over eons of time. The higher the mountains were pushed up, the deeper the gorge got. Today it is over a thousand foot drop from the top to the bottom.

In the 1870's the railroads saw this as the only way through the mountains and both the D&RG and the AT&SF decided they wanted it for their tracks. Since there is only room at the bottom of the gorge for one railroad a conflict developed over the rights to the way. The Royal Gorge War began between the railroads. The war is the subject of enough other references that we won't rehash it here. Let it suffice to say that the D&RG eventually won and they operated the railroad through the canyon for over a hundred years.

 

HANGING BRIDGE

royal gorge hanging bridge closer wppc.jpg (62558 bytes)

At one spot in the gorge the shear rock cliffs are so high and the canyon so narrow that even a tiny ledge could not be cut into the rock. The designers were forced to hang the tracks from beams spanning the canyon and this structure is known as the Hanging Bridge.

 

WORLD'S HIGHEST BRIDGE

Long claimed to be the world's highest suspension bridge at 1,053 feet this engineering and construction marvel is sure to make your knees wobble when looking down from the top.

royal gorge suspension bridge hanging c1940 pcf.jpg (57693 bytes)

 

 

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