Glass Domed Train in the Rocky Mountains

A train ride is quite the cathartic experience. It allows for a swift rate of travel without sacrificing the opportunity to witness a scenic view. If you ever find yourself in Western Canada, you should arrange for a train ride through Rocky Mountaineer’s GoldLeaf Service.

These train rail cars are glass-domed, which allows passengers to have not only a side-view, but also an overhead-view. These full-domed cars are especially convenient when riding through the breathtaking mountain ranges characteristic of Western Canada. If passengers need a break from sitting or a little fresh air, they can step out to their rail car’s external viewing platform. To add to the sense of luxury, passengers are also treated to breakfast and lunch prepared gourmet chefs during the day, and fine wines and cheeses in the afternoon.

After a long day of traveling, passengers can jump off of the train and into a bed at one of Rocky Mountaineer’s hotels. Similar to the GoldLeaf rail cars, these hotels offer stunning views and total relaxation.

GoldLeaf Service is owned by a Canadian rail-tour company called Rocky Mountaineer. Rocky Mountaineer has already added four new carriages to its convoy but is planning to add three more in 2020. The four that have been recently added will follow a two-day route called “First Passage to the West,” spanning from Vancouver to either Lake Louise or Banff and another two-day route from Vancouver to Jasper, called Journey through the Clouds.”

The First Passage through the West route is recommended to those with a love for history. A highlight of this train route is that it passes by Craigellachie, which is the location where the ‘Last Spike’ to complete the Canadian Pacific Railway, thus connecting Canada from East to West. This route also travels across the Continental Divide, through the famous Spiral Tunnels, and past the Hoodoos, formations which – according to legend – are people who have been transformed into pillars through way of witchcraft. If you aren’t that concerned about history, the plethora of mountain views still make this route enjoyable.

The scenic Journey through the Clouds route travels through valleys, the Coast Mountains range, and the Fraser Canyon. The route flows along the Fraser River and passes by the Albreda Glacier and a 300-foot waterfall called Pyramid Falls. Other featured sights are Hell’s Gate, a 108-foot wide ravine (double the size of Niagara Falls), and an 812-foot long truss arch bridge called Cisco Crossing.

The GoldLeaf rail cars were designed and constructed by Stadler– a 75-year-old rail car company rooted in Switzerland. Stadler takes pride in its traditional Swiss values and the fact that the company is 90 percent family-owned. They assert their passion for producing trains that require low maintenance, are energy efficient, and that live up to all of their customers’ wishes and expectations. These passions obviously manifest in the GoldLeaf rail cars, which each hold 72 passengers and feature heated, reclining seats – it is no wonder that these rail cars make history as Rocky Mountaineer’s biggest capital investment.

In a statement about GoldLeaf Service, the president and chief executive officer of Rocky Mountaineer, Steve Sammut says, “We were intentional in designing these new cars to offer the same exemplary guest comfort across the entire fleet, while also making numerous engineering enhancements behind the scenes that reflect our goal of constantly enhancing both the experience and efficiency of our service.”

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