Early in the century, the railway played a major part of the story of the development of the region.

Today, the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad provides visitors a way to explore the mountains and enjoy the natural beauty of Western North Carolina. The train will travel to areas not accessible by any other means and is a great family experience!

Day Trips

This is a must experience! The Railroad offers a variety of scenic, round-trip excursions departing from Bryson City. Trips range from 3 ½ hours to a full day of fun and adventure. 
Click here for [More About Bryson City] Just over 1 hour from the Cashiers - Sapphire area.

The Resort offers trips to Bryson City and the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad most of the year. View the Resort News and Events page to check the weekly trips list.
[Resort News and Events]

One of the most popular rides on the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad is when the #1702 steam engine is pulling the load!

Built for the war effort in 1942, #1702 was originally a coal fired steamer! Planned to be moved overseas, the engine served the war effort in Fort Bragg.

#1702 was sold to the Warren & Saline River Railroad in Arkansas in 1946 and worked until 1972 with that company. During this time #1702 was converted from coal to an oil burner.

#1702 was purchased by the GSMRR in 1991 and pulled excursion trains until 2004 when the firebox required extensive work.

#1702 set in storage for 12 years until restoration was completed in 2016. # 1702 officially returned to the GSMR's active roster on July 26, 2016.

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'Sapphire Valley' - This name was created in 1954 by the Howerdd Family / High South Ventures, LLC
"Ski Sapphire" and " Ski Sapphire Valley" created in 1964 by Gene Howerdd, Jr
**The Sapphire Country: learn more about this at History of Sapphire