Overview: Fast Facts
On Sept. 17, 1901, the first passengers arrive at the Grand Canyon South Rim aboard the train from Williams, Ariz.
Grand Canyon National Park is established by an act of Congress on Feb. 26, 1919.
A good road into Grand Canyon National Park is built in the 1920's, making travel to the rim easier.
Diesel locomotives begin traveling the Grand Canyon line. in the 1940's
Last steam train travels the route to the Grand Canyon in 1953.
In July, 1968 three passengers travel the last regularly scheduled train service to the Grand Canyon.
Santa Fe maintenance crews and the field engineer abandon the Williams train station facility for good in 1988.
On Jan. 10,1989 Max and Thelma Biegert announced redevelopment of the railway route to the Grand Canyon and the rehabilitation of the historic Fray Marcos Hotel and Williams Depot. On Sept. 17,1989 the Williams Depot re-opens under Grand Canyon Railway's ownership.
Reconditioning of two vintage 1906 and 1910 steam locomotives take place in 1989 - 1990; each locomotive requires 8,000 to 10,000 hours to rebuild.
The Grand Canyon Depot re-opens to welcome Grand Canyon Railway's trains in July 1990.
Grand Canyon Railway carries more than 225,000 passengers per year in 2004, which reduces automobile traffic to the South Rim by 10 percent.
In 2009 the Grand Canyon Railway reinstates limited steam operations at the Williams Depot. After converting locomotive No. 4960 to run purely on waste vegetable oil (WVO), the Railway begins conducting steam trips on its special event train dubbed the "Cataract Creek Rambler".
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.