Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad set for return
The iconic Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad is set to resume train operations with a limited excursion schedule in September and October.
After a hiatus since 2019, the historic steam engine “Polson 70” will proudly pull two vintage passenger cars, an open-air car, and a specially outfitted baggage car, serving as a concession and gift shop.
The forthcoming excursions will include express trips from Elbe to Mineral, as well as a series of Whiskey Tasting Trains.
These long-awaited excursions mark the first under the new ownership of Western Forest Industries Museum (WFIM), a local nonprofit organization that assumed control of the railroad in August 2022, after its closure by former for-profit operator, American Heritage Railways.
With a storied history that dates back to 1980, Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad has played a vital role in the economic prosperity of southern Pierce County, as well as in preserving the region’s rich local history. Having served over 1.6 million passengers, the railroad is now poised to embark on a new journey under WFIM’s vision.
Looking ahead, WFIM’s long-range plans involve extensive track restoration leading to Eatonville, further expanding the historic railroad’s reach and significance.
Additionally, the organization envisions the construction of a brand-new museum in Eatonville to house an impressive collection of steam locomotives and logging equipment. Emphasizing a broader and more inclusive context, the museum will delve into local history and stories from the logging camps, offering a lens into the human experience that shaped the rural West Coast.
Earlier this spring, WFIM introduced RailCycle Mt. Rainier, an exciting family-friendly way to explore the foothills of Mt. Rainier. RailCycle riders pedal down the historic railroad, taking in forest and mountain views on WFIM’s custom-designed four-seat RailCycles. Departing from Eatonville, the 3-mile round trip operates all summer and fall, with information found at railcycle.com.
For information on railroad operations, tickets, and updates, visit mtrainierrailroad.com.