The Abilene and Smoky Valley Railroad was founded in 1993 as a heritage railway, dedicated to preserving the legacy of the railroad industry in Kansas by highlighting the interconnectedness of railroads, the people, and the land in our state. An all-volunteer organization, the A&SV runs regular excursions, private charters, school field trip excursions and dinner trains between Abilene and the neighboring Dickinson County community of Enterprise. The railroad operates on track that was initially laid by the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad in 1886.
Passengers on the A&SV do more than just ride trains. Since we are a living history museum project, you can experience train operations firsthand by touring our engines, talk with crew members and observe them doing their jobs, and hear the stories of how the Rock Island and other railroads once provided dependable transportation service that was the lifeline of a burgeoning regional agribusiness economy. You will board the train at Abilene’s historic Rock Island Depot in Old Abilene Town and ride in antique passenger and freight cars, including a wooden coach that was manufactured for the Missouri-Kansas-Texas railroad in 1902.
The Abilene and Smoky Valley is the only steam railroad in Kansas. We use Santa Fe 3415, a century-old Baldwin “Pacific” locomotive that our volunteer staff rebuilt after the engine sat in Abilene’s Eisenhower Park for 40 years. Santa Fe 3415 is our railroad’s superstar, attracting thousands of railfans to Abilene since the engine made its first run on our rails in 2009. The engine has been featured in railroad publications and TV programs, including the PBS “Tracks Ahead” series. In 2022, the Saturday Evening Post’s website named the A&SV as one of America’s best stream train rides.