Amtrak didn’t see bump from canyon closures

Feb 29, 2016

An Amtrak train winds through Glenwood Canyon.
Credit Jimmy Thomas

  Glenwood Canyon has been one of the hottest topics in the Roaring Fork Valley for the last two weeks, but there was barely a peep about one of the fastest ways to avoid closures or detours.

Amtrak runs a train once a day from Glenwood Springs to Denver and another back to Glenwood. The trip is around six hours each way, significantly shorter than the more than 10-hour detour reported during the canyon closure in the last two weeks. But Amtrak spokesperson Marc Magliari says early numbers indicate the agency did not sell more tickets. And, Amtrak cannot afford to advertise the service.

“It’s a budget question, it’s not a question of a return on investment,” said Magliari last week.

Amtrak has about 20 seats each way, with tickets at least $44. Private flights from the Rifle airport were used by some trying to get around the canyon closure.