High in the Rocky Mountains, the Leadville Railroad takes sightseers, historians and train buffs on a scenic journey through untouched wilderness. Along the way, passengers experience the beauty of the Arkansas River Valley and spectacular views of Colorado’s two highest peaks, Mt. Elbert and Mt. Massive.
During the two-and-a-half hour journey through the untamed wilderness of the San Isabel National Forest, passengers may also catch a glimpse of a deer or marmot as they relive history riding along the line built in the 1800s. At the depot, which was built in 1896, they can view old steam engine #641 and have a picture taken with the engineer.
The Leadville Railroad departs daily from Memorial Day weekend through the beginning of October. Sights change as the seasons turn. In early June, the end of the Colorado winter, views include snow-capped mountains. During the fall, passengers see the mountains ablaze as the aspen trees turn gold, red and orange. All summer, the train takes passengers in the 1955 diesel engine up to timber line and the headwaters of the Arkansas River. Both open and enclosed cars are available for guests to move about at their discretion. A thousand feet above the valley floor, the top of the line stops at an overview of the Climax Molybdenum Mine and Fremont Pass. Mid-way, a stop at the water tower provides a great photo opportunity and a chance to tour the engine and caboose. The conductor and other crew members will be happy to answer questions about the history, wildlife or wildflowers of the area.
Special Events for 2016
- July 16, July 30, Aug. 6 - Wildflower Train Special and optional Lunch at the Healy House Museum
- Sept. 2 - Night Ride BBQ Special
- Sept. 10, 11, 17, 18, 24 & 25 - Fall Photo Special (half price)
- Until Aug. 16 - Raft and Rail Package
- All season - Top of the Rockies Zip-Line and Train Ride
The train is ADA-accessible with space to move about and a restroom on board. Well-behaved pets are allowed to ride. Passengers should bring along a jacket or sweater since mountain temperatures vary.