Great Western Railway

The railroad was incorporated October 16, 1901, by the Great Western Sugar Company and started operations a short time later. It provided sugar beet and processed sugar transport throughout the thirteen factories in northern Colorado, and also handled passenger traffic. Additional factories were located in Wyoming and Nebraska, but relied on outside companies for rail service. Passenger service ended in 1927. The Great Western Sugar Company fell apart in 1985, selling several plants to other companies and/or beet growers. Many of the plants were completely shut down. Competition from lower cost cane and corn sugar, coupled with the companies purchase and subsequent gutting by the Hunt brothers in 1977 are cited as key factors in the companies demise. The railroad was acquired from Great Western Sugar by the Castle Corporation (BROE Corporation) in June 1986. It is now owned by OmniTRAX of Denver.

GWR is aggressively pursuing the development of new industry along the railroad. GWR is home to the Great Western Industrial Park, a 700 acre rail served industrial complex that is being developed near Windsor Colorado.

GWR operates over 80 miles of owned tracks and track rights providing freight service in northern Colorado. Lines run from Loveland to Longmont, CO with branch lines from Johnstown to Milliken, CO and from Officer Junction to Windsor, CO. At Windsor, the original GWR line connects with the former BNSF line, now part of GWR, which extends from Ft. Collins, CO to Greeley, CO. In 1999, GWR purchased/leased from BNSF the Ft. Collins North Yard operations, which includes the Anheuser Busch Brewery. Track includes agricultural products, paper, plastics, sand, forest products, brewing grains, beer, and miscellaneous by-products.

GWR has shops located at the old sugar factory in Loveland CO.  A subsidiary, Loveland Locomotive Works, provides full maintenance, repair, inspection and overhaul.  With direct connections with the BNSF & UP close by there is always a full yard of equipment.  They also provide a scrapping service, so you see a lot of equipment fall to the cutting torch.

Most of the rolling stock photos I have are from the scrap line.   I remember long lines of GWR gondolas, hoppers and boxcars as a kid in the 60s & 70s throughout northern Colorado. 

thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail
thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail thumbnail

LightBox 2 Album created with JAlbum

For more information: OmniTRAX

Trains   Home

Copyright Notice:

This website and its content is copyrighted W Berglin 2001 - 2013. All rights reserved.
Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in any form is prohibited other than the following:

- you may print or download material for your personal use
- you may use material from this website for non-commercial use if you acknowledge this website as the material's source

You may not, except with my express written permission, distribute or commercially exploit the content. Nor may you transmit it or store it in any other website or other form of electronic retrieval system.