Big Sky Blue: Glacier Park Tour Reflections

img_0756Big Sky Blue is a pretty good way to describe our amazing trip in September!  Our trip up the California coast, through Oregon and on to the great state of Montana, was just a delight!  Every aspect was fun.  Those that came along had lots to say about ‘doing this again’.

We were greeted at East Glacier with this view of the lodge, indian teepee, and snow-dusted mountains.  The next day, our personal Red Bus Tour took us on the grand-circle-loop over Logan Pass and around the Park.  Quotes from our guide that day were “It’s a very unusual (perfect) day”, “You are seeing this like nobody else saw it this summer” (snow on the mountains and perfect day with leaves of gold), “We never see this lake smooth as glass like this”, and “Last week, there was no view like this as it was all fogged in”.  Yep, that’s what they said, to which my reply was, “We have been praying about the weather!” 

ss-tours-glacier-park-10-18sept16-115The fishing on the Flathead River was great, those that hiked had a wonderful time, and staying back at the lodge was said to be very relaxing.   

In Portland, we had a special treat by being allowed an inside tour at the Oregon Rail Heritage Museum the day they were steaming up the 4449 engine as they celebrated the American Freedom Train’s 40th anniversary.  Wow, that was special!

The trip back to LA was just as great, with amazing views over the Cascade Mountains and back down the California coast.

Let’s do that again!

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Lowell Smith

A native of Portland, Oregon, Lowell Smith married his church choir sweetheart Barb in 1978. After a lifetime of rail-fanning, Lowell and Barb ventured out in 1992 to launch a new business in Portland, Oregon. Read more

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What They Say:

Jim and Jo Ann K.

Every aspect of the trip was professionally done.  You and Barbara were on top of every change and your matter-of-fact assurances speak highly of your professionalism.  Jo Ann is a retired chef  and we know what good food is, and the meals provided on the CZ trip were stellar! BRAVO to you and Barbara for…

Linda and Pete B.

Just wanted to thank you again for the opportunity to be with you and the many other happy folks who experienced the Feather River Canyon trip.  I know you put a lot of work into making this special trip a reality and it all came together extremely well!


These are indeed miniature masterpieces.

J. Arenas

Wow… You made my dream come true with the CK Holiday! I am a great admirer of your work.

Jerry E.

Received GN A10 today. Absolutely stunning! I am very pleased. Thank You all.


Aside from the quality, creativity and originality, you are to be commended for your ongoing commitment to this (GAC) series, and all of your series of trains over a period of so many years.  There is always something to look forward to. Keep up the great work!’ D. K.

B. Kutch

Love your 3-rail O Scale Atlas Woodside Reefer series. Looking forward to future issues.

J. LaBoda

To say the least this is a HUGE development for N-scale and I, along with a number of others, are indebted to you for making these cars possible. Thanks so very much!!!


Thanks for all the great trains – it’s nice to have such wonderful rolling stock on the layout.

S. Reames

I received my observation/business car today and – like all of my other cars from you – I love it!