Anyone who has ever traveled over the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad knows that the line traverses some serious changes in elevation over very short distances. In order to keep the grade steady and manageable...at roughly 4%....the line takes some pretty substantial detours up and down mountain valleys. One of the most scenic on the entire line is the beautiful Los Pinos Valley, where the train travels several miles north, before hooking a 180 degree turn and traveling south again...gaining altitude the entire time. In this scene, the train nears the end of the northbound run, and will shortly take the hairpin curve for the southbound leg on the track in the foreground. The Los Pinos Tank in the foreground is most likely an emergency water stop as none of the trains I observed ever stopped there. And yes, those white patches in the distance are indeed snow. Just 24 hrs earlier, I took a nearly identical shot of this scene....in a heavy, wet snowstorm!