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Family Train Adventures

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FamilyFunAdventures
Discover America’s Scenic Train Rides


     “ALL ABOARD!”  The mighty steam engine nudges forward, gently pulling away from the depot.  Rail coaches are filled with moms, dads and kids peering out windows with wide-open eyes.  The love of train travel is reflected in other faces it passes as it slowly rambles along.  Then, the engine chugs up and over hills of bright fall colors, hugging cliffs around snowy mountain peaks, running along gushing white water streams through canyons of vibrant oranges, reds, and yellows.  The rails turn out onto plains of swaying golden grass and countrysides of farmers harvesting their bounty.  While humming down the track babies sleep and moms and dads are lulled into a mellow state of mind.      
    “WHOOOH!” startled by the hearty shrill of the whistle, the train rolls back into the depot.  The kids are full of chatter and laughter and one can hear, “Mom, do we have to get off?”        
    This fall, take to the railroad tracks and discover the sites, views, and heritage on America’s Scenic Train Rides.          You’ll find a variety of scenic train rides throughout the U.S.  Most of the following routes offer fall foliage viewing and some have special holiday entertainment.  Pack a picnic, bring your binoculars and camera, and share with the kids the train’s colorful history and the scenic views and special sights they can see along the route.  
    All aboard...

Verde Canyon Railroad provides the only accessible route through the Verde Canyon in Arizona’s Prescott National Forest.
Sights: 680-ft tunnel, Indian cliff dwellings, steep canyon walls.  
Length of Trip: 38 miles (approx. 4 hour round trip)
Season: Open year-round.
800-293-7245
300 North Broadway
Clarkdale, AZ 86324
http://www.verdecanyonrr.com

Skunk Train passes through northern California’s redwood forests and mountains.
Sights: Tunnels, bridges and trestles, redwood forests, and views of the Noyo River.  
Length of Trip: 80 mile round trip from either Fort Bragg or Willits; 40 mile round trip to Northspur, half way point.
Season: Open year-round.
707-964-6371
POB 907, Fort Bragg, CA 95437
http://www.skunktrain.com

Durango & Silverton Narrow-Gauge Railroad offers a ride through the
Animas Canyon in Southwest Colorado.
Sights: San Juan National Forest, Cascade Canyon, historic mining town of Silverton.  
Length of Trip: 90 mile round trip from Durango to Silverton; one way from Silverton; and 52 mile round trip from Durango into Cascade Canyon and back.
Season: Open year-round.
970-247-2733
479 Main Ave.
Durango, CO 81301
http://www.durangorailroad.com

Branson Scenic Railway train travels the Ozark hills and valleys of Southern Missouri.
Sights: Tunnels, bridges and trestles, rivers, foliage, and
historic downtown Branson.  
Length of Trip: 40 mile round trip. (Approx. 2 hour ride.)
Season: March-December.
800-287-2462
206 East Main St.
Branson, MO 65616

Fremont & Elkhorn Valley Railroad passes through the scenic Elkhorn Valley, northeast of Omaha, Nebraska.
Sights: Elkhorn Valley, historic town of Hooper and its 1890’s Main Street, and train museum.  
Length of Trip: 30 mile round trip. (Approx. 3 hour ride.) 16 mile round trip to Nickerson.
Season: April-December.
402-727-0615
1835 North Somers
Fremont, NE 68025

Conway Scenic Railroad offers several routes to view the White Mountain National Forest of New Hampshire.
Sights: Mt. Washington Valley and  Crawford Notch--ravines, streams, woodlands, trestle and bridges and train museum.  
Length of Trip: From North Conway: 11 mile-round-trip
to Conway; 21 mile round trip to Bartlett, and 50 mile-round-trip to Crawford Notch. (Approx. 1, 2, & 5 hour rides respectively.)
Season: April-December.
800-232-5251
POB 1947
North Conway, NH 03860
http://www.conwayscenic.com

Western Maryland Scenic Railroad travels The Narrows, a breach in the Allegheny Mountains of Northwestern Maryland.
Sights: Steep grades, iron truss bridge, Helmstetter’s Horseshoe Curve, Brush Mountain Tunnel, and train museum.  
Length of Trip: 32 mile round trip from Cumberland to Frost-burg. (Approx. 3 hour ride.)
Season: May-December.
800-872-4650
13 Canal Street
Cumberland, MD 21502

Adirondack Scenic Railroad provides a fun way to see the Adirondack Park in upper state New York.
Sights: Moose River and woodlands full of fall foliage.  
Length of Trip: 9 mile-round-trip.
Season: May-November.
315-369-6290
POB 84, Thendara, NY 13472
http://www.borg.com/~train/

Great Smoky Mountains Railroad has several train routes through Nantahala National Park of North Carolina.
Sights: Great Smoky Mountains, Nantahala Gorge, Tuckasegee River, bridges, trestles and museum.  
Length of Trip: 34 mile round trip from Dillsboro to Bryson.  44 mile-round-trip from Bryson City to the Nantahala Gorge. (Approx. 3 1/2 and 4 1/2 hour rides respectively.)
Season: April-December.
800-872-4681
POB 397, Dillsboro, NC 28725

Hugo Heritage Railroad provides travel along Red River Valley of southeast Oklahoma.
Sights: Woodlands, streams, the historic town of Antlers, and train museum.  
Length of Trip: 45 mile
round trip from Hugo to Antlers. (Approx. 21/2 hour ride.)
Season: April-November.
580-326-6630
POB 577, Hugo, OK 74743

Ohio Central Railroad journeys through hills and farm land of northeastern Ohio.
Sights: Sugarcreek--“The Little Switzerland of Ohio,” and the largest Amish community in the world.  
Length of Trip: 12 mile round trip from Sugarcreek. (Approx. 1 hour ride.)
Season: May-October.
330-852-4676
POB 427, Sugarcreek, OH 44681
http://www.ohiocentralrr.com

Mt. Hood Railroad begins in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area of Northern Oregon and makes its way south through the Hood River Valley near Hood River.
Sights: Steep grades and can-yons, switchbacks, Columbia River Gorge, views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams and the historical depot, built in 1911.  
Length of Trip: 44 mile round trip from Hood River to Parkdale. (Approx. 4 hour ride.)
Season: April-December.
800-872-4661
110 Railroad Avenue
Hood River, OR 97031
http://www.mthoodrr.com

Strasburg Railroad travels the countryside of farms and woodlands in southeastern Pennsylvania.
Sights: Amish families tending to their farms, historical depot, and the Railroad Museum, one of the largest collections of locomotives in the country.  
Length of Trip: 9 mile round trip from Strasburg to Paradise. (Approx. 45 minute ride.)
Season: Year-round.
717-687-7522
POB 96, Strasburg, PA 17579

Old Colony & Newport Railway takes in the views along the Narragansett Bay
of Rhode Island.
Sights: Bay, beaches, Newport Naval Base, and Green Animals Topiary Gardens.  
Length of Trip: 21 mile round trip from Newport to the Green Animals Topiary Gardens. (Approx. 3 hour ride.)
Season: May-November.
401-624-6951
POB 343, Newport, RI 02840
http://www.ocnrr.com

Tennessee Valley Railroad provides a trip through the Tennessee River Valley area of Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Sights: Woodlands, Chickamauga Creek, and Missionary Ridge Tunnel.  
Length of Trip: 6 mile round trip between Grand Junction
Station and East Chattanooga. (Approx. 45 minutes ride.)
Season: April-November.
423-894-8028
4119 Cromwell Road
Chattanooga, TN 37421
http://www.tvrr.com

Texas State Railroad journeys among the pine and hardwood forests of eastern Texas.
Sights: 30 bridges (one 1,100 ft. long across the Neches River)   
Length of Trip: 50 mile round trip between Palestine and Rusk. (Approx. 4 hour ride.)
Season: March-November.
903-683-2561
POB 39, Rusk TX 75785

Green Mountain Railroad follows the Connecticut and Williams Rivers through the southwest Vermont countryside.
Sights: Views of the Green Mountains, Brockway Mills Gorge, and covered bridges.   
Length of Trip: 26 mile-round-trip between Bellows Falls and Chester. (Approx. 31/2 hour ride.)
Season: June-October.
802-463-3069
POB 498
Bellows Falls, VT 05101

Heber Valley Railroad travels across streams and rivers, through mountain meadows and Provo River Canyon of North Central Utah.
Sights: Bridges, woodlands, and canyons.   
Length of Trip: 32 mile round trip from Heber City to Vivian Park. (Approx. 31/2 hour ride.)
Season: May-October.
435-654-5601
POB 641
Heber City, UT 84032


             

 

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