Great Western Steam Up Frequently Asked Questions

1.         Where is the event?

The event will be held at the Nevada State Railroad Museum located at 2180 South Carson Street in Carson City, Nevada 89706.  

2.         Where can I park for the event?  

There is no parking at the museum during the event.  Free parking lots are located to the north off of South Stewart Street.   Enter the parking lots at Wright Way and Little Lane.  The lots are within easy walking distance of the museum, but a shuttle bus will be available to take visitors to and from the event.  Limited street parking is also available.  Please do not park in the business or shopping center parking lots near the museum.

3.         How do I get to the Great Western Steam Up?

If you are traveling from Reno, take I-580 south to Carson City.  Exit at Fairview Drive.  Turn right at South Carson Street.  Take the first exit at the roundabout to enter South Stewart Street.  Enter the parking lots on the right at Wright Way or Little Lane.  Shuttle stops will be available at the corner of S. Stewart Street and Wright Way for Little Lane to take you to the event, or you may walk south along S. Stewart Street  and S. Carson Street to the event entrance.

If you are traveling from west of Carson City (i.e. Sacramento or the San Francisco Bay Area), take I-80 East.  At Reno, transition to I-580 South to Carson City.  Exit I-580 at Fairview Drive and turn right.  Follow the signs to the parking lots.  Alternatively, take US 50 East to Carson City and exit at South Carson Street and turn left.  Turn onto South Stewart Street and follow the signs to the event parking lot at Wright Way. or Little Lane.

If you are traveling from the south (i.e. Los Angeles), take US 395 North to Carson City.  Continue onto South Carson Street and then take the first exit at the roundabout to enter South Stewart Street and enter the parking lot from Wright Way or Little Lane.

4.         How do I purchase tickets?

Tickets are available online at www.greatwesternsteamup.com or can be purchased at the Nevada State Railroad Museum.  A limited number of tickets will be available for sale at the event entrance.  Tickets to the event are very limited, so please purchase your tickets in advance.  The event may sell out.

5.         If I buy a ticket, can I visit any day I choose?

No.  Tickets are sold on an individual day basis and cannot be transferred to a different day.  Tickets will not be honored for days that are different than the day purchased.

6.         Is visitor re-entry allowed?

Yes.  Ticket holders will receive a wristband that permits re-entry on the ticketed day.  If you do not have valid ticket or wristband, you will not be permitted to re-enter.

7.         What are the event hours?

Gates open to general admission at 10 a.m. each day and the event closes at 5 p.m. each day.  The last entry for ticketed patrons is at 4 p.m. each day.  A limited number of early entry tickets are available for purchase as an add-on to regular tickets.  See the event ticket page for details.  These permit the ticket holder to enter the event at 8:00 a.m. and to watch the locomotives being fired up, serviced, fueled and moved into position for the event.

8.         Are any special train rides available?

Yes.  Each day at noon will feature a special train that is only available for an extra fare.  The train is limited to 45 riders per day and tickets must be purchased in advance at the event website.

9.         How much does it cost to ride the regular trains?

Regular train rides are included in the price of a general admission ticket and will depart approximately every 20 minutes from the Wabuska Depot at the museum  The visiting locomotives will each pull trains on different days and each day will feature a different train.  You will have to visit the event on more than one day to ride behind all of the locomotives that will be pulling trains.  Train consists are easily photographed from throughout the festival grounds.  Regular train rides will be available on a first come, first served basis.  You must wait in line to board a train.  You may not have others save your place in line.

10.       Will there be food and beverages available for purchase at the Great Western Steam Up?

Yes.  The event will feature a food truck area, other food vendors and a dining tent.  A beer garden will also be included.

11.       What is the “Locomotive Pageant”? 

Each day at 1 p.m. at the turntable in front of the museum annex there will be a narrated rolling display of the operational locomotives in attendance.  Limited seating is available and most attendees will stand.

12.       How will my ticket proceeds be used?

All ticket proceeds go toward defraying the cost of the event and supporting the non-profit operations of the Nevada State Railroad Museum.  In general, it costs approximately $10,000 to transport each visiting locomotive to and from the event.

13.       What happens if the event get cancelled?  

In the event of an emergency or other event that precludes the Great Western Steam Up from being held as scheduled, the event organizers will attempt to reschedule it and honor tickets for the rescheduled event.  If it is not feasible to reschedule the event, ticket purchasers will receive museum admissions and membership privileges of equivalent value to the ticket price.  Due to the substantial cost of transporting railroad equipment to and from the event, ticket purchases will not be refunded.