Your kids will think they’re on their way to Hogwarts when they enjoy the magical, unique fun family vacations experience of the Durango Train. Adults will love the beautiful scenery and learning the history of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad as they ride through the snow-dusted Colorado mountains.

The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge train ride is one of the favorite activities of guests to our Colorado Trails Dude Ranch. It’s easy to add the train ride to your all inclusive family vacations at Colorado Trails either before or after your adventure vacations with us. Please be aware that you will need to make train reservations in advance at

A Brief History of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

The forty-five mile route was built during 1881 and 1882 by the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad company. At that time, the train’s main cargo was silver ore and gold ore mined from the nearby San Juan Mountains – the same mountain range where Colorado Trails Dude Ranch is located. Besides silver and gold, the train also carried people – often miners and those related to the mining industry.

Built as an extension to the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad company’s line from Antonito, CO, the railroad has run continuously since 1882. Unlike most places in the US, the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad has used steam locomotives without interruption since the inception of the rail line. Today, of course, the train only hauls tourists, a trend which started after World War II. Today the line is owned by American Heritage Railways, headquartered in Durango.

Durango Train Route

The train ride departs from Durango and winds its way through downtown at a slow speed. Forty minutes later, it reaches Hermosa, where the train takes on water and tests its brakes before it climbs up to Rockwood on a curving route that cuts through mountains and along canyons. It stops a few more times before reaching Silverton, located in a valley outside a narrow canyon. At Silverton it stocks back up on coal and water, then heads back to Durango.

Just One of Many Adventures at the Colorado Trails Dude Ranch

As you start sorting through different vacation ideas, keep in mind that Colorado Trails Guest Ranch offers a wealth of adventures both on and outside the ranch. In addition to riding the Durango Train, you can spend an evening watching the Durango Melodrama at an historic theatre. Besides train rides and theatre shows, we keep the whole family busy with fly fishing, horseback riding, hayrides, cookouts, and much more. Book your all inclusive family vacations at Colorado Trails Dude Ranch today.