Road Trip Gallops Into Colorado

The Great American Road Trip

Destination: Colorado

Movie: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)

The Sound Track for this post:

Last week the road trip stopped in Utah, and this week we take up seamlessly where we left a plane crash in Northern Utah, as we watch Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, an oldie but still goodie.  The movie starts in Utah and then hops and skips to Colorado for the train sequences and back to Utah and back to Colorado (not to mention New Mexico and California) following the adventures of lovable bad guys played by Paul Newman and Robert Redford. The train is actually the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, and as a stop on your own road trip, you can ride on it–with no robberies along the way.

Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge RR

Of course every reader of A Traveler’s Library has already seen the movie. Right? Well, I had not watched it for quite a few years, and I had actually forgotten how well the movie portrays the luscious western scenery.  If you can watch this movie and NOT want to travel (by road trip or on horseback, or train) to Colorado (and Utah and the West in general), perhaps you should schedule a neurological examination. There is something definitely wrong with your wiring!

One of the best things about  the west–you can watch a movie set in the 1890′s and today you can still see the same wide-open spaces and the same spectacular mountains and canyons, that these desperadoes rode across.

Even if the movie had no plot, a re-watch would be worth it to see the extended scene with Paul Newman riding around the ranch yard(sorry, that’s California) on a bicycle, sometimes with Katherine Ross on the handlebars, and the catchy tune Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head in the background. (You’re singing it right now, aren’t you?)

And then there’s that unforgettable leap into the river from a cliff (in Colorado)–with better results than when Thelma and Louise drive over a Utah cliff in a later movie.

Jump!

Jump!

According to Wikipedia, actors as diverse as Jack Lemmon and Marlon Brando were considered for roles, but these are the guys who made film history.

Redford and Newman as Butch and the Kid

Whew! Thank goodness it turned out to be the perfect film coupling–Paul Newman, as the nervous “thinker” who is smarter than the rest of the gang( but that’s nothing to brag about) and Robert Redford, the silent, moody and sometimes dense partner. Not only did it start Redford’s film career, but the pair went on to make several more movies together.

Sneffels Creek Canyon, Photo by Tom Harris, USFS

But mostly, I recommend looking at the film again so you can see that fantastic Western scenery. If you’ve never taken a road trip across Utah, Colorado, Wyoming and Montana, perhaps I need to explain that it really does look that spectacularly beautiful.

Pictures are from various sources, but the scenic canyon view is a Creative Commons picture from Flickr. Click on it to see the nice work of the photographer. And thanks, as usual to You Tube for always coming through with the right film clip.

AND THAT, MY FRIENDS, IS POST #500!

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler’s Library, recreating her family’s past at Ancestors In Aprons. She writes frequently for Reel Life With Jane and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

Vera Marie Badertscher – who has written posts on A Traveler's Library.


About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons. She writes frequently for Reel Life With Jane and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

10 thoughts on “Road Trip Gallops Into Colorado

    1. Wrong? Only if you think not watching Paul Newman, Robert Redford, and other great Western Scenery is wrong. By the way, although the film made the best 100 films list of the Smithsonian, it got some bad reviews when it first came out.

    1. Yep, Frugal. I miss Paul Newman. Every time I go to the grocery store, I’m reminded of him with that beautiful face on all those bottles and cans and packages of Newman’s Own.
      Here’s a story I found. All the world mourned his passing, except Bolivia. Apparently the movie has never been shown in Bolivia because they think they were made bad guys in the worlds’ eyes when they shot a couple of bandits who everyone else saw as folk heroes–Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Now here’s where it gets weird. The President of Bolivia said publicly that they were glad that one half of their problem had died and when the other half died the problem would go away. Blaming Redford and Newman for a bad image? And wishing Redford would die? Bizarre!!

  1. Funny, I recently watched Butch Cassidy again for the ump-teenth time, and enjoyed it every bit as much! And I also recently visited Colorado – such a beautiful state. Loved every minute of my time there.

  2. Congrats on your 500th post. It’s been SOO long since I’ve seen Butch Cassidy. I’m inspired to watch it again. In the meantime, I’m off to Boston for work. Maybe Colorado in the spring?

  3. How wonderful is it that a 5-minute clip like that can brighten your day? Thanks for the visual trip down Memory Lane, and here’s to 500 more posts!

  4. A great 500th post about a great movie! I love “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” and was known to re-enact the cliff diving scene on the high-dive as a kid. Any idea where that cliff is in Colorado? A question without an answer probably, but thought I might ask. That would be worth a 12 hour drive to Colorado to see (and possibly jump off of)! :)

  5. You’re talking to a Colorado native here, so I’m already convinced it’s a beautiful place. But I never did make it to the Silverton train. It’s too bad. Have you ever heard of CW McCall? He started out in advertising and then made these songs all about Colorado. They’re all tongue-in-cheek, very fun. But he has a song about the Silverton. We’d listen to his songs while driving so as soon as you mentioned it, I started humming, “Here comes the Silverton, up from Durango. Here comes the Silverton shoveling coal…”

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