Scenic Train Rides in Wisconsin
|Brohead||Colfax||East Troy||Green Bay||Hartford|
|Laona||Marshall||Milwaukee||Mineral Point||New London|
|North Freedom||Osceola||Spooner||Steven Point||Wisconsin Dells|
For scenic train rides in Wisconsin, head on over to the Osceola & St Croix Valley Railway along the Minnesota state line and the scenic St Croix Valley. The Wisconsin Great Northern offers 30-mile special train rides and casual dining excursions over former C&NW track. The Mid-Continent Railway Museum offers train rides, caboose and cab rides from May through November.
For narrow gauge fans, the Riverside & Great Northern Railway is a 15" narrow gauge scale train ride operating at the Wisconsin Dells. And for more miniature steam train rides, take a ride on the Whiskey River Railway at the Little Americka Amusement Park. Enjoy some of Wisconsin's finest cheese board the last original electric railroad line, the East Troy Electric Railroad.
Head on over to the Leona & Northern Railway for an old fashioned steam locomotive train ride on the vintage Lumberjack Steam train.
Did you know?
The state's first chartered railroad was the Milwaukee & Waukesha in 1847, which eventually became part of the Milwaukee Road. Wisconsin is served by 4 major railroads today, the BNSF, UP, Canadian National and the Canadian Pacific and operates over 3400 miles. The state's railroads provide the unique routes needed to connect Chicago and the Twin Cities. There are several short lines also serving the Badger State.
Wisconsin has 60 steam locomotives, many of them well preserved and on display at the National Railroad Museum. Soo Line #1003 steam locomotive runs out of Hartford, WI and Soo # 2713 is on display in Stevens Point. One of only 8 surviving Union Pacific 4-8-8-4 Big Boys, UP No. 4017 is on display at the Green Bay National Railroad Museum.
Restored 1881 Chicago, Milwaukee & St Paul depot, museum features a Milwaukee Road switch engine a caboose.
Large collection of locomotives and rolling stock from the Milwaukee Road and the Soo Line.
The East Troy Electric Railroad is a moving museum that combines the thrill of train travel with a savory meal and the lovely scenery running from East Troy to Mukwonago in southeast Wisconsin. The ETER offers Dinner Trains and special events. Check site for availability and hours of operation. Directions
Photo by Richard Stevens
The Green Bay National Railroad Museum displays over 70 locomotives, train cars and exhibits. Get an up close look at the world's largest steam locomotive, Union Pacific's 4-8-8-4 Big Boy, No. 4017. You can sit inside the cab of one of only 8 preserved engines of the original 25 that were built before they were retired in 1959. Additional steam locomotives on display at the museum include the Superior & Ishpeming 2-8-0, No. 23, the Soo Line 4-6-2, No. 2718, and the AT&SF 2-10-4, No. 5017. along with the newly restored A4 Class 4-6-2 Pacific, the Dwight D. EIsenhower. A General Motors Aerotrain is also on display. Guided tours of the museum are also available.
Wisconsin's largest auto museum, also is home to the 1913 Alco Soo Line 2-8-2, #1003. The Soo 1003 locomotive operates on mainline rails hauling trains of various kinds and makes appearances in a variety of public events.
2012 Update:Soo Line 1003, a restored Mikado-type steam locomotive, is currently operated by the Steam Locomotive Heritage Association and now visits communities in Wisconsin with a compliment of volunteers to fulfill the mission of SLHA. Locomotive #1003 is stored and available for viewing at the museum, allowing children and adults of all ages the opportunity to witness the sights, sounds, and smells of the steam era of railroading. Directions
Camp Five visitors board the Leona & Northern Railway 1916 Vulcan built 2-6-2 Lumberjack Steam train at an 1880’s Soo Line Depot for a 2 1/2 mile round trip train ride to the historic 1914 logging camp museum. Museum offers historical exhibits about forestry, as well as a pontoon boat ride down the Rat River. The logging camp is listed on the National Register of Historic places by the US Department of the Interior. Directions
The Whiskey River Railway, operating in conjunction with Little Amerricka Amusement Park, is a 16 inch gauge operating an array of steam and diesel engines and proto-typical freight and passenger cars with over 2 1/2 miles of track around the park. The park operates from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend. Steam locomotives are normally run on the weekends, with diesel units operated during the weekdays.
Railroad museum housed in the restored 1856 Mineral Point Railroad depot operated by the Mineral Point Railroad Society. Displays include artifacts from SW Wisconsin railroading history. The museum is open seasonally from May through October.
Historical village with a restored 1923 C&NW depot with several other historical structures. Rolling stock includes an 1888 wooden caboose used by the Soo Line, a 1968 C&NW caboose and a 300 HP diesel built in 1941.
The Mid-Continent Railway Museum is an outdoor living history museum and operating railroad recreating, preserving and interpreting the small town and short line way of life from the "Golden Age of Railroading" from the years 1880 to 1916. A scenic 50 minute,7 mile train ride travels through the Baraboo Hills departs from a restored 1894 C&NW depot. Currently, all train rides at the Mid-Continent Railway Museum are diesel powered. On display are several restored steam locomotives, including the famous C&NW 4-6-0 # 1385, built in 1907.Directions
Update 2015: C&NW No.1385 is currently in the prossess of restoration to become fully operational again.
The Minnesota Transportation Museum the Osceola & St Croix Valley scenic railway, following the beautiful St Croix Valley as well as trips to Dresser, Wis. The Osceola train rides include brunch trains, pizza trains, fireworks trains and autumn trains for viewing the beautiful fall colors. On display is retired steam locomotive NP 2153, a 4-6-2 "Pacific", that was built to pull the Northern Pacific's premier passenger train, the North Coast Limited.
The Railroad Memories Museum is housed in a former C&NW depot that has twelve rooms filled with railroad memorabilia and artifacts, including rare uniforms, bells, whistles, tools, books, train interiors, lanterns, signals and lots of history including photos, books and videos. Located next to the Wisconsin Great Northern Railroad. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
The Wisconsin Great Northern scenic dinner train rides include the Great Brunch Buffet, the Lumberjack Breakfast Buffet, a Family Pizza Train and a 2 hour adult Happy Hour Train with a dance car featuring music from the 50's through 90's. Check for additional trains through out the year.Directions
The Friends of 2713 is a nonprofit group that is dedicated to the preservation of the railroad history of the Stevens Point, Wisconsin area. Their main focus is to preserve the 4-6-2 Soo Line Pacific Class H-21 locomotive number 2713 and the Soo Line caboose number 158. Located near the old Soo Line Depot in Stevens Point, WI.
The Wisconsin Dells' Riverside & Great Northern Railway is a 15" narrow gauge scale railroad and is about a 3 mile round trip train ride through the wooded natural area of the "Dells". The railroad operates on weekends from April through October. Directions