Scenic Train Rides in South Dakota
Today you can travel by rail excursion through the Black Hills and experience all the beauty that the landscape has to offer. South Dakota's only scenic excursion train is on the Black Hills Central Railroad, providing for an all around historic scenic train ride.
Did you know?
There are 23 steam locomotives listed in South Dakota today. Head on over the the Hill City for the only operational steam locomotives in South Dakota. The Peninsula Terminal Co. 2-6-2T No.104, along with the only 2-6-6-2T Mallet in service in the world, the Weyerhauser Timber Co. No.110, pull scenic train rides on the Blackhills Central Railroad. Several other steam locomotives are on display in museums and parks.
The Dakota Southern Railroad was completed from Souix City, Iowa to Vermillion in 1872. South Dakota once boosted of having over 4000 miles of track, but today it has less than half that amount. And where the Black Hills were once home to a large network of mine branches, just a few have survived today.
The 1880 Train ride recreates the experience of an 1880's mountain railroad. Located near Mount Rushmore, experience this old time train ride behind the power of the vintage Baldwin 2-6-2, the historic #7 steam engine built in 1919, as it makes it's 2 hour, 20-mile round trip scenic train ride between Keystone and Hill City, running through the rugged and historic landscape of the Black Hills. Several daily trains run between May and October. Don't forget to check out the last operating Mallet in the US, #110. The 2-6-6-2T, that Baldwin built in 1928, can operate on grades of better than 4%. Also check the schedule for a Day out with Thomas train rides. Directions
The South Dakota State Railroad Museum is an interactive interpretation of railroad equipment, memorabilia, and the ever-changing historical material specific to South Dakota and related American railroads. It is a destination designed for all ages and levels of interest.
The Prairie Village museum has a collection of rail equipment, restored building and preserved farm machinery. Collection includes several steam and diesel locomotives as well as several cabooses. Buildings include a 3 stall roundhouse. A 2 mile train ride around the village runs on Sundays. Directions