Five Shots: Verde Canyon Wilderness Train

Verde Wilderness Train, Clarkdale, AZ
1. Verde Wilderness Train, Clarkdale, AZ

All Aboard for a twilight adventure out to Sycamore Canyon Wilderness where John Ford filmed the Verde River railroad bridge at Perkinsville in the 1962 classic, How the West Was Won. It was impossible to select only five. My lucky number is 13:

2. Train Trestle
2. Train Trestle
3. Sycamore Canyon
3. Sycamore Canyon
4. Riding the Rails
5. Sun Tipped
6. Pop of Gold
7. Butterfinger
8. Arriving to Perkinsville
9. Plum Sunset
9. Plum Sunset


The following are untouched–I simply messed up the settings trying to capture the full moon and the night. However, I rather like the painted feel, so I included them anyway.

10. Night-time Return
11. In the Dark
12. Night Train
13. Full Moon Over Caboose

Which one do you like best? 

Hope you enjoyed your Arizona twilight tour with Jim and I.


77 thoughts on “Five Shots: Verde Canyon Wilderness Train

Add yours

    1. The flashed upon cliffs and dazzling sunsets always commands instant appreciation. But, I agree with you, I liked the couplets and the rails flashing beneath. The motion of the shot seemed cool to me, too. I thank you.

    1. Thanks, Tim! My two favorites, as well. the couple in #13 looking cuddling in front of the full moon on the observation deck was something straight out of a novel. He was wearing a kilt and his hair long and flying around; she, in love and they both mesmerized and alone on the crowded platform.

  1. The photos are fantastic. I really like Plum Sunset… But, I really like trains and number 2 with train cars and trestles. I took a similar shot to number 4 riding the rails on the Alaska Road on the way from Anchorage to Denali. Great shots!

    1. Hi there! What a great surprise. It was a lot of fun. Number 4 turned out well–love those clasps that connect the cars. Your Alaska train trip sounds wonderful, too. I bet you saw breathtaking mountains along the way. Thanks for commenting, Uncle Hank. 🙂

  2. I’ve just been taking some photographs of the beautiful sunset over Manchester tonight, they pale in comparison to this selection though.

    1. Hi John. I liked the blue –you can tell the season is changing, the blue isn’t as deep, but lovely just the same. That gold! I’m glad you liked it. The train lighting the way in #11 was a good one for me. Thanks for voting.

  3. Plum sunset might be my favorite but I really do like how the last 4 come out more like a painting than photos, you’re right. Definitely worth keeping. 🙂

    The tour looks positively sublime. Beautiful canyon and sights

    1. Hi Tom. It was fun to play tourist. I watch the train from my deck go out every day, but it took me three years to actually get on it. It was great seeing the canyon from a different angle. Isn’t funny how sometimes when you mess up, it becomes something interesting to look at? Thanks for your kind words and for voting.

    1. Oh, yes! That very thought crossed my mind the entire time. Especially the tunnel we went through–it was 160 yards. Once the copper mine closed in the 50s, someone had the forethought to transform it into a history/tourist ride. I was very impressed with the whole trip.

  4. I LOVE your new banner and your pic w/ your handsome hubby. You made such a fine couple Cindy! I LOVE all of these, but man that ‘Sun Tipped’ one took my breath away. You made me even more excited for our trip and hopefully meeting you soon!!

    1. Ruth, yes, I thought of you on the trip last night. You and yours would appreciate it. It’s kind of pricey. We were very lucky–a friend of mine gave me the first class gift card–she had been on it several times and just gave it to us. Hope our paths cross late September. Oh, there’s a film/music festival next weekend here. I’m hoping to catch some indies and do some reviews. 🙂

  5. By coincidence, my last post was about ‘How The West Was Won.’
    I like the last photo of you two on the train, that’s one for the album. I also like number 7, as I would never see anything like that in England. The blurry night shots conveyed great atmosphere too.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  6. I love the trestle bridge. I have a thing about bridges. And I liked the coupling that you labelled riding the rails. But basically I love going traveling overseas with all you “Foreign Folk”.

  7. Wow, amazing shots of your journey, what stunning landscapes to travel though on a train like this. I also really like the pictures of the return journey, gives a real sense of experiencing the voyage.

    1. Hi Paul, Oh good, I’m glad you liked it. I don’t have a lot of practice with night shots; it was cool to be in the vast, blackness of the wilderness with a solitary beam in front of the train and the solitary beam above us in the sky.

  8. What an amazing train ride! I’d love to go on it, although I’d probably spend most of my time on it expecting to be held up by a bunch of cowboys with kerchiefs over their faces. Wow!

    1. Oh, it was a fun place to let your imagination run wild. The herons along the river, Perkinsville where a small community lives and where they turn the train around. The lights, the shadows–all out in the middle of nowhere–it was great! Thanks for commenting.

  9. I just saw these – terrific shot! I just finished reading Paul Theroux’s “The Old Patagonian Express” – an older book about his rail trip from Boston to Patagonia…your classic old railroad, while a shorter trip, is just as full of interesting trivia and history!

    1. I was in that area last year about this time. They make some nice wine down south below Tuscon. The valley/region is beautiful. I’m 3 hours north, an hour south of Flagstaff. Thank you, John.

        1. Thank you for sharing, John. Up in the Verde Valley, Clarkdale has a train that revisits the Perkinsville stop.When they exported the copper from mines, Clark had the railroad built. It went around the mountain to Prescott where the copper could be shipped then nationally. Anyway, the train is a beautiful way to see the countryside. If you are ever in this area, you and your wife would love it, I suspect. It’s romantic and full of the history we both seem to share. 🙂

  10. The Sycamore Canyon, that gold really pops but I think I will with In the Dark. I did like those night time shots. When you guys got married, was this in the canyon? Did you go on a train ride for the wedding too or just on the train at their home station?

    1. We went out a few years back on a “night-ride” trip. I learned that they did weddings on the train and so I decided back then if Jim popped the question, I wanted it to be out in the canyon.
      So the vows were said on the train, we had the cake, and then after four hours and the train returned, we all (30) went downtown to a cool restaurant we like that serves fresh cuisine. It was a mighty fine day. 🙂

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