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The West of old, new and myth meet in Durango, Colo.
The West of old, new and myth meet in Durango, Colo.

Without railroads and mines, what would the American West be? Less populous, less prosperous, less polluted. And the town of Durango might not be anything at all. Durango, sporty and historic, stands 6,520 feet above sea level among the San Juan Mountains of southern Colorado, its downtown streets skirted by the Animas River. Look past the runners, rock climbers, kayakers and fly-fishers, past the rampant Subaru wagons, the snowboarders of winter and the second-home-owners of summer, and you'll notice the narrow-gauge rail tracks alongside the river, leading into the mountains. This is the route that brought the town to life in the 1880s. Built by the Denver & Rio Grande Railway...

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