Journey Back in Time on an Enchanting Train Ride Through Northeast Oregon

eagle cap train rides
Google Local, Eagle Cap Excursion Train

In the heart of beautiful Northeast Oregon lies a hidden railway gem that beckons adventurers seeking a nostalgic and awe-inspiring experience. The Eagle Cap Excursion Train offers a remarkable journey through rugged landscapes, where the spirit of the Old West still whispers in the wind. Step aboard and embark on a voyage that will transport you to a bygone era, filled with nostalgia, beauty, and untamed wilderness.

eagle cap train rides, NE oregon, wallowa mountains, history
Mitchell Friedman

Nestled amidst the magnificent Wallowa Mountains, the Eagle Cap Train Rides present an unforgettable opportunity to soak in the region's rich history and breathtaking scenery. These vintage train rides take passengers on a captivating voyage, traversing the unspoiled landscapes of Northeast Oregon.

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The Wild and Scenic Wallowa River, Bureau of Land Management Oregon and Washington

The Eagle Cap Train Rides: A Portal to Nostalgia

Stepping into the train is a bit like encountering a time capsule. Visitors will traverse a segment of the enchanting Joseph Branch rail line, nestled amidst the captivating landscapes of Northeast Oregon. The train gracefully follows the meandering path of the Grande Ronde River, passing through rugged cliffs and forested ridges, before embarking on a journey alongside the pristine and protected Wallowa River.

Whether you're a railroad enthusiast, a lover of nature and wildlife, a history aficionado, or simply a traveler seeking a delightful and tranquil way to immerse yourself in the region's breathtaking beauty, the Eagle Cap Excursion Train promises an experience that will surpass your expectations.

eagle cap train rides, NE oregon, wallowa mountains, history
Eagle Cap Train Rides

As the whistle blows and the wheels start to turn, you'll feel a palpable sense of nostalgia. The train cars, meticulously restored to their former glory, evoke memories of a time when locomotives connected communities and opened doors to new frontiers. Step into the past as you settle into the plush seats, surrounded by the comforting aromas of polished wood and a good lunch.

Related: Wallowa Lake, Oregon in 2023: Your Ultimate Outdoor Destination

Preserving A Legacy

The Eagle Cap Train Rides are not only a remarkable journey into the past but also a testament to the commitment of preserving history and culture. Volunteers and preservation societies have worked tirelessly to restore and maintain these vintage train cars, ensuring that future generations can continue to experience the magic of the Old West.

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Eagle Cap Train Rides

Stretching across 63 miles, the Joseph Branch railroad weaves together the small, vibrant communities of Elgin, Wallowa, Enterprise, and Joseph in the breathtaking landscapes of Northeast Oregon. Serving as a vital connection, this historic railway links these charming towns to the Union Pacific railroad hub in La Grande. Along the way, you'll spot abandoned homesteads nestled amongst the rolling hills and grassy meadows, and if you're lucky, glimpse wildlife such as elk and mule deer.

Related: Baker City, Oregon: Where History Meets Adventure

The Lure of the Wallowa Mountains

Known as the "Little Switzerland of America," the rugged peaks of the Wallowas offer a picturesque backdrop to your adventure.

eagle cap train rides, NE oregon, wallowa mountains, history
Mitchell Friedman

As the train chugs along the tracks, prepare to be mesmerized by the awe-inspiring beauty of NE Oregon. The landscape unfolds before your eyes, revealing sweeping vistas of rolling hills, verdant valleys, and towering mountains. The ruggedness of the region's untamed wilderness invites a deep appreciation for nature's grandeur.

Related: 10 Breathtaking Reasons You Must Visit Northeast Oregon

Encounters with History

As the train weaves its way through charming small towns and quaint communities, you'll find yourself immersed in captivating tales of the past. The region's rich history comes alive through engaging narration and stories shared by knowledgeable guides. Learn about the intrepid pioneers who settled this land, the Indigenous cultures that thrived here for centuries, and the railways that shaped the development of the American West.

eagle cap train rides, NE oregon, wallowa mountains, history
Eagle Cap Train Rides

Each year, the Eagle Cap Excursion Train meticulously plans out various themed rides on different dates throughout the season. For 2023, some of these include:

  • High Country Outlaws Train Robbery - "There are bandits out there in the hills, and they are looking for an excuse to flag down the train and climb on board. Be on the lookout for beautiful horses and sneaky bandits. Hide your valuables and keep your camera handy! A delicious boxed lunch is served during the return leg of the trip."
  • Bigfoot Special - "This shorter ride is perfect for families or people who want to pack a lot into their day. The rushing river and fall colors are highlights along the Grande Ronde River. But this trip promises more excitement and fun, as Sasquatch has been spotted in the area! Are you a naysayer or a believer? Bigfoot experts Scot and Hannah Violette ride along to help sway your opinion."
  • Joseph Branch Railroad History Train - "Hear stories about loggers, railroaders, cowboys, and the history of the Joseph Branch railroad as we follow the shore of the Grande Ronde River to Rondowa, then continue along the Wild & Scenic Wallowa River ride for a couple of miles before reversing direction for the return to Elgin. A delicious, boxed lunch is included and served along the way."
  • Two Rivers Bonus Picnic - "Designed for rail fans, this longer train ride follows the Grande Ronde River from Elgin to Rondowa, then travels up the Wild & Scenic Wallowa River to Minam. Enjoy a picnic on the lawn at the Minam Store, beside the rushing Wallowa River."

Are You Ready to Climb Aboard?

The 2023 excursion schedule offers 23 train rides, spread out through October 22.

All trips depart from the Elgin Depot, located at 300 Depot Street, in picturesque Elgin, Oregon. For information and online booking, visit the official Eagle Cap Train Rides website.