MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. — The Manitou and Pikes Peak Cog Railway is inching closer to reopening, as it recently tested out new equipment to help keep the new track clear of snow.
The new state-of-the-art snowplow was built in Switzerland, and can spray snow in any direction. It went up the mountain Thursday using cutting wheels to carve through the snow. The wheels can extend 12 feet wide and up to 14 feet high, helping cut through most of the snowdrifts commonly seen on Pikes Peak.
This new technology makes it possible for the railroad to stay open all year long.
“Our old plow just couldn’t handle that concrete-like wet snow at times,” Cog Railway assistant general manager Ted Johnson said. “This new plow, as we saw this morning when we went up with it for the first time, had no issue handling that snow. It was very hard, very compact, wet, almost icy, and it cut right through it with no issue.”
The machine also has plows on the front and back, allowing it to plow on top and between the rails.
Previous Cog Railway coverage
- Cog Railway tickets on sale now for May reopening
- Cog Railway gets new state-of-the-art snowplow
- New Cog Railway locomotive, cars arrive at Manitou Springs depot
- America’s highest railroad reaches the halfway completion point, set to reopen 2021 (September 2020)
- Cog Railway set to reopen next spring: FOX21 takes a behind-the-scenes look at construction (August 2020)
- Significant progress on Pikes Peak Cog Railway (June 2020)
- First tracks installed in new Pikes Peak Cog Railway (May 2020)
- On-track for renovations: Cog Railway begins restoring cars in Manitou (November 2019)
- (Re)constructing the Cog Railway (November 2019)