Experience an Old West Shootout on the 1880 Train

1880 Train 14HILL CITY, S.D. – The whistle, the billowing smoke, and the chugging of the engine are authentic sights and sounds for the 1880 steam train. Celebrating its 65th year, the 1880 Train is an activity like no other in the Black Hills. Following the original route of the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad, the 1880 Train takes passengers on a two-hour, narrated, 20-mile historic trip. The Hill City station is the headquarters of the 1880 Train and at the end of the line is Keystone, originally created to work the Holy Terror Mine. The 1880 Train was started by William Heckman in 1957 and is the oldest continuously operating tourist train.

This This summer, the Black Hills Shootist Association has partnered with the 1880 Train to bring a first-hand experience of a train robbery.  This old west shootout brings a little western history to the passengers riding from Hill City to Keystone. The story begins once you board the train. About half-way through the ride, the train stops at Oblivion, the original destination for the 1880 Train in the 1950’s. Here is where the historical reenactment takes place, featuring the notorious train robber, Sam Bass.

Nathan Anderson, the Business Operations Manager for the 1880 train, says, “Every Sunday night throughout the middle of the summer, up until rally week…we run a Sunday night shootout. It’s a special event for families and young people and everybody of all ages.”

The 1880 train runs four departures a day from Hill City and three departures from Keystone.

Anderson explains, “You can combine your original departure and your return time, so you can combine up to six different itinerary options. [You can] spend time in either town of Keystone or Hill City and just enjoy the Black Hills.”

However, the Old West Shootout experience is reserved for Sunday evenings.

Anderson describes, “Our regular train ride departs at 5pm from our Hill City depot. But it’s going to be a little bit longer than a normal train ride. This will be about two and a half hours with the shootout portion in there.” The Shootout train rides are almost always sold out, so advance reservations are recommended.

For more information, visit their website here.

Categories: ConnectCenter1-Events, Local News