During the month of February and March 2016, the D&SNG is replacing 620 feet of rail and ties on the main track in front of the depot. Although track has been replaced through the years as needed, it is thought that a full track replacement has not been done since Denver & Rio Grande Western days (pre-1981). The rail being torn out is 57# rail and it is being replaced by the heavier 75# rail. In addition to the ties and rail removal, the asphalt will be torn up and more ballast laid. Ballast forms the trackbed and is used to bear the load from the railroad ties and facilitate drainage of water. The wood ties will be replaced with about 350 composite ties made from 100% recycled material, keeping tons of plastic bottles and waste from sitting in landfills and filling our oceans. Composite ties have longer life cycles, are extremely strong, durable, and low maintenance making them a highly cost-effective choice.
The project is expected to take about 2 weeks.
In these photos Maintenance of Way workers Kern R. and Jonah H. cut through rail with a rail saw while farther down the line Moe R. prepares the track for additional cuts. The replacement composite ties and 75# rails are pre-attached and ready to be placed.
2/29/16: Work continued through the week