Thanks to Thomas and Friends, I love trains.
So it was a nice surprise that Amy decided to book a trip on the Heber Valley Railway; an old 19th Century railway that “served the pioneers”; the people who teraformed and transformed Utah from a barren wasteland into what it is today.
We boarded the train after passing through the old ticket office that seemed like it had been plucked right out of a Clint Eastwood Western; the conductor was suitably decked out in period clothing and he welcomed us on board the grand old carriages. I mused that people must have been a lot smaller back then as the seats were much, much smaller, just as they were back in London on the old commuter trains. No Big Mac and chips for those folk.
The ‘Heber Creeper’ chugged along at a modest speed of about 5mph, I didn’t mind that at all because it allowed me to fully take in all the gorgeous scenery as we passed alongside beautiful prairies with long grass, a valley with barren rock formations and a gorgeous lake called ‘Deer Creek’.
It was at Deer Creek that I got a glimpse of my first American Eagle; I spotted a nest atop a telegraph pole that looked over the lake, I eventually learned that the Eagle is very commonplace in the area and there is even a place called ‘Eagle Mountain’ not too far from away. I also spotted some very brightly coloured finches which nested along the fast flowing brook and streams that eventually lead into the resevoir.
The train suddenly stopped at ‘Soldiers Hollow’, when all of a sudden a masked ‘bandit’ came out of nowhere and shot off a very loud blank from his replica shotgun. It was a stick-up! He and his accomplace boarded the train and proceeded to hold up the trains……..much to the chagrin of the kids who were initially a bit scared; only to then throw their teddy bears out the window at the bandits who were departing with their loot. So they got back on again, one bandit threatened to shoot the toy duck if the kids played up again, then they left for good. Gotta love those amateur dramatic types eh?
I could honestly have sat on the train going backwards and forwards all day along the tracks; it was great value for money and you can find out more here http://www.hebervalleyrr.org/