WILLIAMS, Ariz. – The steam engine changed everything. It created time zones, kick-started the Industrial Revolution and 150 years ago the Transcontinental Railroad was created, connecting the East and West coast and reducing travel from around five months to about five days. It opened up the possibilities of exploring destinations all across America, including the South Rim of the Grand Canyon in 1901. Today finding a living, working steam engine pulling a real train that’s going somewhere in the U.S. is rather rare. Of the 30,000 built, less than 200 survived, and only a few are still running today.
One place where romantics, rail enthusiasts and younger generations can learn, hear, see, smell and feel the majesty of the Iron Horse is on the Grand Canyon Railway in Arizona.
Grand Canyon Railway has announced that it will once again bring out its operational Steam Locomotive starting on Presidents Day and running monthly on the first Saturday from March 2 through Oct. 5. They will also run a special steam train Sept. 21, which marks Grand Canyon Railway’s 30th Anniversary. More information is available at www.thetrain.com/events/steam-saturdays.
While the Grand Canyon Railway actually has two operating (and rather large) steam engines, this year the honors will go to #4960, built in 1923 and weighing in at 310 tons.
More information about the Grand Canyon Railway and special overnight packages at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel in Williams is available at www.thetrain.com or 1-800-THE-TRAIN (843-8724).
*While steam is scheduled on these days, all equipment is subject to change. Please check website and with the Railway for any updates.
Information provided by Grand Canyon Railway