This vacation we intended to ride on some of the trains of Colorado which we hadn't already been on. The most famous, the Durango to Silverton Railroad, we had done before and recommend it heartily The best laid plans being what they are, we didn't get to do all the trains intended, missing the train at Royal Gorge, but the others were fun.
The Pikes Peak Cog Railway starts at Manitou Springs, which is one of the neat "tourist towns" of Colorado. Main Street in Manitou Springs is definitely devoted to tourism, and I don't find this a bad thing. I found a black powder shop, The Muzzleloader, and enough cowboy stores to outfit a CAS shooter, and enough Indian stores that one could get a pretty good Native American costume if one had money and desire. These aren't things you can find at Target. The restaurants were pretty good, and we found a 4th of July band concert in the park. Very relaxing.
The Depot is picturesque in a pseudo-Swiss style. The food there is decent.
The Cog Railway uses a cog drive in order to climb the steep mountain.
The trains have reserved seating, 3 on the left, or downhill side, and 2 on the right or uphill side. If there are only 2 of you, then you will be stuck on the uphill side both going up and coming down. If you want to take pictures from the "good" side, you'll need to reserve and pay for 3 seats. Then you'll get the downhill side. "Gramma wasn't feeling well, so she stayed in Manitou."
The views from the top are pretty spectacular.
It's probably not a good idea to get half sloshed and make the trip. 2 teenagers got altitude sickness on our trip. Messy. Paramedics were called.
A better ride was had at the GEORGETOWN LOOP RAILROAD