Denver & Rio Grande Western [Southern Pacific]
June 11, 1996
A loaded coal train is coming off the Craig Branch (former Moffat Road mainline) and entering the Rio Grande mainline at Orestod, Colorado just east of Bond for the long uphill run along the Colorado River to the Moffat Tunnel.
It's pretty well known that Orestod is Dotsero (the other end of the Dotsero Cutoff) spelled backwards. However, many conflicting stories have circulated about how Dotsero got its name. According to a brochure at one time distributed on the California Zephyr, it resulted from a survey made in 1885 by the Rio Grande, from the point on its mainline (later the Tennessee Pass line) where the Eagle River emptied into the Colorado River, north along the Colorado. The starting point being labeled as .0 ("dot zero") gave it its name. As Winston Churchill once wrote, "If it isn't true it ought to be."
This page posted 10/1/2017; revised 8/1/2018. Text and photo ©2017 Lamont Downs.