The Scenic Limited (trains 1 & 2) was
another train that operated in conjunction with the MP and
WP operating between Denver and Salt Lake City (on the D&RGW),
but with through cars not as a through train. The train
began operations 1906, and was on and off the time table
though 1915. It was discontinued on June 1, 1946. The D&RGW
portion became the Royal Gorge, the MP portion became
the Colorado Eagle.
The Scenic Limited was introduced on
June 3rd, 1906 as trains 19 & 20. This was literally
an all-Pullman train, as all five cars involved were built
and provided by Pullman. Due to the inflexibility of a static
five car consist, and the requirement for any through passengers
to detrain and reboard connecting trains, this first iteration
wasn't really successful and it was shut down by the end
of summer, 1906. Note that the Western Pacific wasn't completed
It was the Panama-Pacific Exposition that
reintroduced the Scenic Limited, this time it would
have components transferred to the Western Pacific from
Salt Lake City to Ogden, and on the Missouri Pacific from
Pueblo to St. Louis (irony here - the ideological successor,
The Exposition Flyer, would also be put in
place due to a San Francisco exposition, but would depart
from Chicago, not St. Louis and it would be, in essence,
a through train. The St. Louis to Denver portion was run
by the CB&Q). The 2nd edition of the Scenic Limited
was introduced on April 12, 1915, this time as an "all-steel"
train, run in daylight hours for maximum scenic viewing.
Train 20 was the Scenic Limited, but in a
twist, train 19 was named the Pueblo Express.
Instead, train 5 from Denver was given the name Scenic
Limited, though it ran from Denver to Pueblo only
(this in an attempt to capitalize on the name). For the
time, the arrangement was train 5 from Denver to Pueblo
would be called the Scenic Limited, and from
Pueblo to Ogden, the Chicago-San Francisco Express.
Train 19 from Ogden to Pueblo would be the Pueblo Express,
and from Pueblo to Denver, the Scenic Limited. Again,
the Scenic Limited would be off the timetable
at the end of summer (of 1915).
The D&RG decided the name had too much
cache to abandon, and renamed trains 1 & 2 (Pacific
Coast and Atlantic Coast Limited) to the Scenic
Limited. The operating department continued with the
old names for another eight years in the employee timetables.
After the 1934 opening of the Moffat Tunnel and the Dotsero
Cutoff, the main route between Denver and Salt Lake City
went via the Moffat. Fewer trains, and fewer customers went
via the Royal Gorge route. However, the train still retained
through cars from the MoPac.
In 1941, a new train was introduced on the
MP - the Colorado Eagle. It handled the traffic previously
handled by the MP's version of the Scenic Limited.
On June 2, 1946, the Scenic Limited was renamed the
Royal Gorge - or at least, trains 1 & 2 were
renamed. The new service held some of the traffic as the
Scenic - there was a MP & WP version of the Royal
Gorge. Neither of those versions lasted very long though,
and the essence of the Scenic Limited was gone by
As with any passenger train, modeling the Scenic Limited
is dependent upon the era and season being modeled. The
Scenic Limited was a heavyweight train and at its
inception, an all Pullman one. This was the "flagship"
of the D&RG & D&RGW. This train rarely included
a head-end portion. By its end, it had coaches and tourist
The Scenic Limited went from the age of wood cars,
to the age of steel heavyweights. There are no real options
for those cars from the 1906 version available in model
form. The early version of the Scenic, from 1915 through
about 1930 also is difficult to model, given that the cars
would mostly have been the 25nn series of Pullman Plans
-the 35nn Plans came into use about 1930 on the D&RGW.
In 1938, there were six sleepers listed in the time tables
- a 10-2-1 San Francisco to Chicago car; a 10-2-1 between
San Francisco and St. Louis; a 10-1-2 between Salt Lake
City and Denver; a 12-1 between Ogden and Denver; a 16 section
Tourist sleeper between San Francisco and Chicago, and a
13 section tourist sleeper between Ogden and Denver. In
addition, a dining car, coaches and a lounge observation
were also listed.
The equipment list below is basically between 1932 and