The Durango Train Route
A unique experience awaits you aboard the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. History buffs and nature enthusiasts will have an unforgettable adventure aboard this rare 3 ft narrow gauge heritage railroad which has run continuously since 1881. Covering 45 miles of track between Durango and Silverton, the Durango train ride is one of the few in the U.S. that has continuous use of steam locomotives. Hop aboard one of the historic train cars, steep yourself in the lore of the Old West, and enjoy the spectacular scenery during the journey.
Be sure to bring a camera to capture the truly breathtaking scenery along the train route. Traversing canyons and mountains, you will be treated to majestic views that only nature can provide. Sheer cliff walls, river-run canyons, mountains, and forests offer plentiful photography opportunities. Watch for local wildlife such as deer, elk, black bears, Bighorn Sheep, eagles, and more.
As the Durango train passes through flag stops and makes water tank breaks, take in vistas of today’s rich farmlands and yesteryear’s stage coach roads and mining camps.
Along the way, you will be treated to a variety of terrain and grades. Part of the trip closely follows the meandering Animas River as it courses through the canyon. As the train enters the narrow rock cut of the Tank Creek area, the Durango train ride becomes the only ground transportation into the Animas Canyon.
Durango train passengers will traverse the rock shelf of the mini-highline, which follows the edge of a small cliff. The train also winds around a rock face above Shalona Lake. Riders will also be treated to the excitement of the highline, a section where the train crawls along the face of high cliffs.
This historic train trip lets you travel the same path and witness the same awe-inspiring scenery as the early settlers and miners did. Let yourself slip into the nostalgia of the past and imagine a simpler time. Be sure to explore many museums of Silverton to learn more about the early years in Colorado’s mining country. For those interested in the early years of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, be sure to visit the D&SNGRR museum in Durango.