Operate a Loco

The North Carolina Railway Museum’s Operate-a-Loco program puts YOU in the engineer’s seat of one of our diesel locomotives. Spend an hour at the throttle on the 8-mile round trip New Hope Valley Railway route through the North Carolina piney woods. Experience the thrill of driving a real railroad locomotive.  The tickets are $295. There are (2) separate sessions on each hour for separate locomotives, instructors and operators to participate. We run our OAL program to help raise funds to maintain our locomotives. We appreciate your support and certainly welcome donations to help maintain our locomotives, too. Click this link to see how to donate.

The Operate-a-Loco program is open to anyone age 18 and up with a valid driver’s license. Participants will operate a diesel locomotive that is not connected to other train cars. There is room for one Guest/Observer in the locomotive cab, age 10 and up, who will not operate the locomotive. There is no extra cost for the Guest/Observer to ride along.  Just let the engineer know when you arrive that a Guest/Observer will be joining the ride.  Operate-a-Loco participants and observer are required to wear closed-toe shoes. Long sleeve shirts and gloves are also recommended.

Please report to our Dispatcher’s Office, 5121 Daisey Street, New Hill, NC  27162, fifteen minutes before your scheduled time and park along the fence.

Our steam engine is in the process of undergoing the required 15 year FRA inspection and will not be part of our Operate-a-Loco program this year.

YouTube video from an actual OAL session

A wonderful video from Our State Magazine – Best-Kept Secrets in the Triangle: North Carolina Railway Museum. At the 2:40 mark in the video, reporter Elizabeth Byland experiences our Operate-a-Loco opportunity.