Originally owned by the Denver South Park & Pacific Railroad the "highline" was completed in 1884 and was originally a narrow gage railroad. The route was 151 miles from Denver and crossed the continental divide twice before arriving in Leadville.
The Leadville Railroad is the last remaining section of the original Denver South Park & Pacific Railroad.
In December of 1987 a local business couple, Ken and Stephanie Olson, approached the Burlington Northern Railroad Company about purchasing the Highline as it was no longer needed to haul freight. They were able to reach a deal and purchased two GP9 Diesel electric locomotives, 8 flat cars, 4 boxcars, 5 cabooses, the roundhouse, over 14 miles of track and thousands of railroad ties, spikes and rails. They worked hard to turn all of that into the cars we ride on today and opened for business on Memorial Day weekend of 1988. The couple owns the line to this day and are now joined by their children who help with day to day operations.
Here on the Leadville Railroad we are always looking to expand our offerings and share our unique history with the world! We continue to build and maintain track while adding on specials for new and fun ways to enjoy the highline in beautiful historic Leadville Colorado.
Take in the stunning views of the Upper Arkansas River Valley. View Colorado's two tallest peaks Mt. Elbert and Mt. Massive. The train travels through the peaceful San Isabel National forest with towering evergreens and beautiful fluttering Aspen trees! Stunning scenery through every season!
There is no better place to rest and relax with your favorite people than on board the Leadville Railroad. Make sure to bring your camera, you will want to capture these memories that will last a lifetime.
Learn about Leadville, Colorado's colorful history full of historical figures and scandal. Hear how railroading impacted this part of Colorado. Our conductors each have unique stories that capture the rich history of the area.