June 10, 2017: I enjoyed my first ride on the Verde Canyon Railroad so much last year, that when I returned to the Sedona area again, I was happy to see the special event rides they offer. You can see dramatic scenery by rail in daylight, sunset and starlight conditions, along with leaf peeping during the months of October and November. What more could you ask for?
It was also great that my friends, Mary & Steve Betcher could join me for the Saturday night tour and the big bonus was that it was during a full moon. It’s always fun to share these kind of times with friends who enjoy the same kind of activities. Here’s Mary as we’re getting ready to leave the station – with champagne service, yet!
After the train departs the depot, you can order drinks and they serve little sandwiches and snacks in first class section.
But the views are first class no matter where you sit!
And we all liked the option of being able to be outside in the open cars, too.
The turnaround point for the train is in Perkinsville. It’s neat to watch the locomotive come around to the front of the caboose for the return trip. Now we head back waiting on the moon and star show!
It’s really cool to see the train stretched out in front of you like previews of coming attractions.
This is the Abe Lincoln profile – do you see him?
The colors of the canyon toward the end of the day are so dramatic and the clouds added even more visual interest.
More striking colors and perspectives of the ever changing formations.
Mary and I both spent a lot of time in the outside cars taking pictures. I love this shot of her with the mountain and surrounding clouds.
Sunset colors were almost psychedelic!
Locomotive headlamp lights up the canyon on the way back
I was bummed that I never got one decent shot of the full moon, so I’m grateful that Mary got this one with her phone. I think even a professional photographer with high grade equipment couldn’t really capture the true sights experienced on this wonderful ride.
Speaking of not being able to truly get the spectacular shots I gasped at during the ride, here are the best ones I came up with, but there’s no way one static image can convey the whole experience. It really is one of those things you have to see for yourself, so I hope you get that chance.
It was even better when you could catch a glimpse of the river bank lined with them!
If you have any comments from your own experience, feel fee to share in Comments below – I’d love to hear from you!