A pair of D&RGW 2-8-2 steamers are patiently waiting as their trains are prepared for departure. The location is Antonito, Colorado and the date is August 10th of 1940. The train at left, headed up by the #470, is the San Juan. At right, locomotive #471 is in charge of a mixed train (both passenger and freight) that is headed for Santa Fe, New Mexico. Antonito is where the branch to Santa Fe leaves the Rio Grande’s mainline.
Both of these locomotives are a class K-28, and were built by Alco Schenectady in 1923. The K-28s are easy to identify with their cross compound air pumps mounted on the front of their smokeboxes. Both of these locomotives would be sent to Alaska for service on the White Pass & Yukon railroad, this soon after the entry of the United States into WWII.