View single post by Traingeekboy
 Posted: Tue Nov 8th, 2011 05:20 pm
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Joined: Sun Aug 28th, 2011
Posts: 516

East slope bore in the background.

East slope bore entrance.

West slope bore entrance.

Interior shot of mine with tracks.

O-4-0 motive power.

From colorado history museum site at the Denver Public library:

Although I cannot give specific details in dates and other details, I can give you some general info on the Vidler.

The Vidler was a tunnel planned as a crossing of the Colorado divide. Part of the plan was to mine out ore during the construction of the tunnel as a way to finance the entire operation. Although gold and silver was mined out, the concentration of ore was not enough to continue digging and the tunnel was not completed.

The plan was to run electrified two foot trains through the tunnel thus connect from a place above George Town on the east, to a valley above copper mountain in the west. Sadly the Moffat was completed and the Vidler project wasn't able to come to fruition as a rail carrier.

Over the years the tunnel was owned by numerous organizations until it came into possession of the city of Golden. Golden needed water; the Vidler was the perfect way to transport water, from the west slope where there was plenty of snow runoff, to the east slope where things are a bit drier.

With completion of the bore, Vidler tunnel became a financial success and is still in use today as an aquaduct that travels 1.6 miles under the great divide.

I was fortunate enough to go on a walk through with Will Stametz (sp) the hydrologist for the city of Golden's water supply. Another hydrologist who's name I do not recall right now, and my good friend Beth Simmons a geologist and author of a history of Idaho Springs and a history on one of the original dinosaur bone hunters, Arthur Lakes. Her Idaho springs book is available in the Idaho springs museum, so some of you may have read it.

My primary interest in video is as an art form. I am not usually concerned with what most people would want to see in a video anymore. I tend to shoot randomly and then look over my footage for interesting light forms and colors. In fact the video may seem sort of crazy and hard to follow. What I got from this journey was sound. There is a very unique sound quality when one is underground. Sounds tend to die quickly, and there is very little sound aside from the sound of your own breathing; which can't be captured in a video.

For me the video is about saving the sound of being deep in the rock, but it is also a record of a railway that never was.

From the city of Golden site:

As I looked for links on the Vidler tunnel I came across articles about water. We model railroaders tend to be obsessed with the history of geology in terms of precious metals. These days water may be a more precious commodity as can be seen with the repurposing of the tunnel as a ways of transporting water.

Hmmm... I wonder if someone will model the Vidler bore on their layout as it should have been.

Last edited on Tue Nov 8th, 2011 07:28 pm by Traingeekboy

Did I ever mention that I like trains?
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