The Verde Canyon Railroad is a heritage railroad near Clarkdale, Arizona, southwest of Sedona, Arizona.
Opened in 1912 as the Verde Valley Railway, it was built to support the copper mines at Jerome, Arizona. The Santa Fe Railway operated and owned the 38-mile branchline from 1912-1989, providing coal to the Phoenix Cement Company, and shipping copper and cement outbound.
New owners, the Durbano Family, took over with the Arizona Central Railroad/Verde Canyon Railroad by 1989-1990. Passenger service resumed in November 1990.
Current excursions are a 4-hour, 40-mile roundtrip from Clarkdale to the ghost ranch of Perkinsville and back. Scenes from How the West Was Won were filmed at Perkinsville in 1961. The route is nestled between two national forests and adjacent to a designated wilderness area, follows the Verde River the entire way and features a 680 foot long, curved tunnel and many bridges.
As of 2005 the Railroad carries over 100,000 passengers per year.
In March 2005 the Verde Canyon Railroad celebrated its 1 millionth passenger