What is the Blues Train all about?
The Durango Blues Train is a moving musical experience aboard the Historic Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. The train starts and finishes each night in downtown Durango, Colorado. There are 2 bands and 4 solo/duo artists performing live blues on the train with a sound system in each coach. The coaches with the solo musicians will have seats in them with plenty of room to dance and move around. Coaches are fully enclosed railcars with windows and doors that open and close. Bands will be located in the open air “gondola” cars. Gondolas have full roofs, open sides, with seats removed to provide plenty of room for dancing and moving (we encourage passengers to bring jackets). Please read the FAQ (What should we wear?) below about open air gondolas and cinders in the air.
There will be two coaches with no music for people to chat and relax. You will be allowed to travel between all coaches and gondolas. Each coach holds approximately 40 passengers. Our Coach Hosts may ask you to move into another coach if they feel there are too many people in one of the coach or gondola rail cars. This is a narrow-gauge railroad meaning there is not a lot of width between the aisle and the musicians. Please be very careful and courteous as you pass by the musicians and accompanying guests.
What is the schedule?
The Blues Train is approximately 3.5 hours long round-trip. The train begins boarding at the train depot at 6:30 p.m. and the departure time is at 7:00 pm sharp. The return time to the Depot is tentative at 10:30 pm. There is a 15-20 minute break at Rockwood at approximately 8:30 pm.
Where is the box office?
The box office is located in front of the train depot at 479 Main Avenue in Durango (look for the pop-up tent with Blues Train signs). The box office will open at 2:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday of the Blues Train weekends.
Is the lineup the same both nights?
YES. Friday and Saturday will feature the same musicians each evening (2 full bands and 4 solo/duo artists) but don't let that stop you from riding both nights! Each night be a unique experience and atmosphere among friends and musicians. Call it a 'jam session in your living room'! For ideas on how to make it a weekend, click here.
Are there assigned seats?
Yes and no! Your coach assignment will be listed on your wristband which is picked up when you exchange your ticket at the train depot. We require you to start out in your assigned coach. Once the train begins to move the music will begin and you are free to walk between all the coaches and gondolas and check out all the musicians. If one coach or gondola is full, please move on to another so that we do not overcrowd a coach or gondola (this does not happen often, so don't worry, there is plenty of room to move around). In the unlikely event of an emergency, we would ask that you return to your assigned coach or gondola train car until the emergency is dealt with. Please note some will be assigned an initial coach without music. This location is just for departure and in case of an emergency. You may mingle among all the coach and gondola railcars as soon as we are underway.
Can I walk through the train and sit where I want?
After the train is underway, passengers are free to walk throughout the train to dance and enjoy all the music, visit the Concession Car for refreshments and use the restrooms.
Are there restrooms?
Yes. Restrooms are located in the rear of each of the enclosed standard coaches and accessible to all passengers.
Are there refreshments?
Yes. Refreshments are for sale in our concession car located toward the center of the train and in the gondolas. There is a cash bar featuring beer, wine, snacks and a wide selection of non-alcoholic beverages are available for purchase. Credit cards accepted too!
What if you arrive intoxicated?
If you arrive at the Depot visibly intoxicated, you will not be allowed to board the train and your ticket will not be refunded. Outside alcohol will not be permitted. Carry-on bags are subject to check.
Will there be Blues Train merchandise for sale?
Yes. There will be koozies, stickers, posters, t-shirts and hats for sale located in the concessions coach in the middle of the train. To browse the online store, click here.
Will there be people to assist you?
Yes, each PASSENGER coach will have a Coach Host. They will be on hand to answer any questions you may have and also your point of contact in case there is an emergency. Coach hosts are typically located between coaches helping people to cross coaches and to ensure no one stands between coaches.
Can we stand outside in between coaches?
Due to safety reasons you will not be allowed to stand outside coach cars. The passageway between coaches must be kept clear at all times. Our Coach Hosts will be monitoring this location at all times.
Can we smoke?
No, the entire train including the open air gondolas are NON SMOKING; however, the train will make a short stop halfway through the ride at the Rockwood wye (where the engine turns around). Passengers will be allowed to disembark from the train and smoking will be permitted. Please do not throw your cigarette butts on the ground.
What kind of weather should I expect?
The Durango area boasts nearly 300 days of sunshine and the months of May and August are no exception. However, it's always good to be prepared for rain during this time of time of year! Two of the coaches are open air coaches so dress appropriately. This event is Rain or Shine.
What should I wear?
When traveling on the D&SNGRR, we suggest you wear layers of clothing. The Durango Blues Train will depart early evening and although we are expecting a warm summer evening, Colorado mountain weather can change instantly so be prepared for a crisp evening. Closed-toe, closed-heel shoes are strongly recommended - sandals are not advised. Clear glasses are highly recommended, when in our two open air coaches, to protect eyes from possible cinders in the air. Eye protection is available for purchase in the depot gift shops prior to departure. White clothing is not advised.
Please note that cinders in the air are very possible with a coal-fired, steam-powered locomotive. Two of the Blues Train cars are "open-air gondolas" without seats to create natural dance floors. Please dress appropriately and be prepared for some possible cinders in the air and on your clothing.
Where can I park when I ride the train?
The D&SNGRR parking lot is located next to the rail yard at the corner of U.S. Hwy 550 and College Drive, just west of the McDonald's restaurant. You may also purchase your parking ticket with cash at the parking lot on the day of your ride.
Parking lot fees are $8.00 for a car, truck or motorcycle and $10.00 for an RV, bus, trailer or any vehicle utilizing more than one standard parking space. You will need to purchase a parking ticket for each date your vehicle is parked in the lot. Per city ordinance, there is no overnight camping allowed in the lot.
What about altitude?
Durango's elevation is 6,512 feet above sea level and Rockwood sits comfortably at 7,367 feet in elevation. Guests are encouraged to get plenty of rest and drink lots of water to prepare for altitude (whenever possible, try to acclimate to the altitude by arriving a day early). If you have any health concerns, check with your physician for advice.
How do I get there?
If you're driving in Colorado, you can find current road conditions by visiting the CO Department of Transportation's website, click here. For recorded phone information please call (303) 639-1111 or toll-free (877) 315-7623.
Plan your weekend
Durango has so much to offer during the Blues Train weekend. For a list of Blues Train staff suggestions and tips for a fun weekend in Durango, click here.
For Blues Train specific questions, please contact us below. For general inquiries regarding the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, click here.