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Ridgway
Dallas Divide
Placerville
Vance Jct.
Telluride
Ophir
Trout Lake
Lizard Head
Rico
Dolores
Mancos


 

 

Location Map...

 

trout lake view gem.jpg (100655 bytes)
Lake View c1900

 

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Related Information

Trout Lake, CO
Elevation 9,802  ft.
RGS Mile Post 49.1

This spot was originally a natural lake that was later dammed higher, to provide additional storage for the Ames Power Plant near Ophir. The site was settled prior to the coming of the railroad, and in 1883 it had 7 log cabins. Some mining prospecting occurred but there was never any great finds of ore.

In 1891 the railroad arrived by constructing track surrounding the lake in order to climb in elevation on the approach to Lizard Head Pass. There was never a Depot at Trout Lake. But, it did have a Water Tank and a 28 car siding.


Trout Lake rail yard c1900

A great flood occurred in 1909 after several large rain storms. Park Reservoir Dam upstream of Trout Lake failed and released its stored waters into Trout Lake. The lake was already full itself and the flood waters overtopped the dam and washed it out as well. Torrents of flood waters rushed down the Lake Fork river and into the Ophir Loop area below. Many RGS bridges and trestles suffered significant damage during the event and had to be repaired.

Today this is a quiet spot and the old railroad bed can be driven by automobile around the lake. The water tank still stands and is well worth a look.

 

WATER TANK

trout lake water tank locomotive 20 c1940 tlh prn.jpg (61646 bytes)
Trout Lake Water Tank c1940

The water tank at Trout Lake was an important stop on the railroad. It stored 50,000 gallons of water and was typical of the water tanks on the RGS, like the one at Rico.

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