Los Angeles Live Steamers Ghost Train

Griffith Park
5202 Zoo Drive – Los Angeles, CA 90027
www.lals.org
info@lals.org
(323) 662-8030

2016 Dates & Hours:  none – the event has been cancelled this Halloween.

According to an announcement on the volunteer group’s official website:

“We are sorry to announce that our annual fundraiser The Halloween Ghost Train will not be held this year due to various contributing factors. We thank you for the many years of support you’ve shown us. We look forward to seeing you during our normal operating hours every Sunday (except for the first Sunday in October, and Memorial Day Weekend) from 11am – 3pm. Thank you for your understanding.”

Hopefully, the Ghost Train will resume for Halloween 2017

*

Information from past years is below…

Are you a parent looking for a family-friendly way to enjoy Halloween in Los Angeles? Then the Ghost Train is for you!

Over the years, the Los Angeles Live Steamers has gradually expanding, adding more decorations and special effects, including video projection, creating a wonderfully elaborate series of enjoyably spooky Halloween displays, which earned our pick for best Halloween-themed ride in our 2013 Halloween Haunt Awards.

Read our Ghost Train archive.

The Los Angeles Live Steamers Railroad Museum has been presenting their “Ghost Train” since Halloween 2001. Supported by train enthusiasts, the non-profit corporation runs their 7 1/2-inch gauge model trains on Sundays year-round. Each Halloween, the path around the tracks is decorated with approximately 30  spooky scenes.

Originally, a ride on the Ghost Train was somewhat akin to a twenty-minute drive past a few dozen well decorated yard haunts, featuring decorations, lights, and static props but few effects and little if anything scary: lots of colorful lights, Jack O’Lanterns, skeletons, giant spiders, scarecrows, and a Grim Reaper or two.

Starting in 2011, however, the Live Steamers began using digital projection to provide eerie effects.  With ever more elaborate mechanical props, The Ghost Train morphed into something resembling a demented Disneyland, filled with with more than enough Halloween magic to appeal to haunt-goers of all ages.

No, this will not happen to you as you ride the Ghost Train.
No, this will not happen to you as you ride the Ghost Train.

GHOST TRAIN SCARE FACTOR
Is it scary? In the old days, definitely not, but now? Perhaps ever so slightly. The Ghost Train is still more fanciful than frightening, but the newer figures are more lifelike; their movements and voices could invoke a tiny spark of fear in the most easily intimidated trick-or-treaters.

Still, there is nothing really disturbing, nothing that will instill nightmares. There are no costumed actors yelling “Boo!”; though a few props are rigged to pop up unexpectedly, nothing jumps out at you or tries to grab you. You’re safe.

Bottom Line: Parents who want to avoid more intense Halloween attractions should bring their children here. Adult Halloween fans will enjoy the displays as well, even if they do not have children.

GHOST TRAIN  REQUIREMENTS:

The ride is ideal for child-sized riders, but adults can manage if they do not mind squatting down on the tiny trains for the approximately 20-minute duration. Riders must be at least 34 inches tall and not weigh over 350 pounds. Riders under 15 must be accompanied by an adult.

GHOST TRAIN PARKING PROBLEM:

Not so much problem as confusion. The official address for the Los Angeles Live Steamers is 5202 Zoo Drive in Griffith Park, but the entrance gate for this address is closed at night. The Ghost Train’s dirt parking lot is perhaps a quarter mile east. This is a dark road in the middle of Griffith Park with few cross streets and almost  no street lights, but you will see the lights, artificial fog, and customers when you reach the miniature train area.