My Visit To Cass Scenic Railroad State Park


Hey y’all!  Looking back, it’s been three years to the day that I rode the Strasburg Railroad in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.  To commemorate that day, I am going to post pictures of my most recent train ride: the Cass Scenic Railroad.  Once a logging line, this 14-mile railroad has since been turned into a West Virginia state park, with old logging locomotives (mostly Shays) being used for power.  Starting at the Cass, West Virginia, railroad depot, your ride will take you up the nearby mountains, with several overlooks of the Appalachians.  The climb is a tough one, with grades that can reach 9-10%, and even then, two switchbacks are employed on the route.  Along the way, you will pass the recreated logging camp at Whitaker, where you can get a feel of what the area was like during the logging operations.  The summit of Bald Knob is the end of the line for the Cass Scenic Railroad, and here you get sweeping views of the Appalachians, as well as the National Radio Observatory in the valley below.  After a twenty-minute stop, you begin your journey back to Cass.  If you ever visit West Virginia, I would highly recommend a visit to Cass, where you can either take the train to Bald Knob, or the train to Whitaker.  Both are well worth the time.

Here are the pictures I took while I was visiting.  Enjoy!

 

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Cass Scenic Railroad State Park, and this is in no way a paid advertisement.  These are just my thoughts and descriptions of the ride.

 

 

 

New Facebook Page!


cropped-logo_530370_print.jpgWell, not exactly new.  More like a reboot.  But, you get the idea!  I’ve remade the Railside Adventures Facebook page so I can have another platform on which to share and reach new people.  I do, however, need your help. How can new people see the page or know it’s valid if it doesn’t have any “likes”?  That’s where you come in.  I would very much appreciate it if you could show your support for this new branch to the Railside Adventures family by “liking” it to increase its visibility.  To sweeten the deal, I’ll post special updates exclusive to the Railside Adventures Facebook page, posts that can’t be viewed anywhere else!  That’s all I have for now, but I hope you’ll lend a helping hand to make Railside Adventures Facebook page the most popular train page on Facebook!  Happy Rails!

My visit to the Strasburg Railroad.


The run around at Lehman Place.  My time at the Strasburg Railroad, which still runs under it’s original charter dating from 1832, was one the greatest railroading experiences that I have ever, or will ever, have.  The atmosphere was very enjoyable, early July weather in Pennsylvania being very mild, and the setting being in Amish farmland.  It was enhanced with an old station to buy your tickets from and a 12” gauge children’s railroad around the station’s complex.  Before our departure, my family and I were able to stroll around and look at the engine that was to pull our train, former Norfolk and Western 4-8-0 #475, and some of the buildings.  Upon departure, we got into our car and found our seats.  For the choice of cars, I would recommend the open-air car, which made the ride way more enjoyable with nice fresh air and the sights of beautiful countryside without having to look through a window.  Just after we left the station we saw a motel where, instead of renting a room, you rent a caboose. There are some railroad crossings along the short 5 mile trip, and they provide the chance to hear that great steam whistle.   After one of the crossings, this one being at Cherry Hill, there is a passing siding along the line past at Groff’s Grove, where, when the railroad is running two trains at once, the trains meet.  Sadly, when I was there it was just the one train running, and we didn’t get to see a meet.  After that the last place of importance we got to was Lehman Place ( a.k.a. Paradise Pennsylvania), the end of the line.  At Lehman Place, the railroad has a runaround track so the engine can pull chimney first back to Strasburg, after pulling tender first to Lehman Place.  The Strasburg Railroad interchanges with Amtrak’s former Pennsylvania Railroad Harrisburg line at Lehman Place and, during my visit, an electric Amtrak train went by at such a high speed that my mom wasn’t able to get a good still picture of it (I got video though).  The runaround complete, we started the short trip back to Strasburg.  I went back to the complex the next day to railfan a bit and to get a  t-shirt of the railroad after stopping at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania (see earlier post).  There was very friendly service at the railroad, and I would highly recommend anyone in the area to pay a visit to the Strasburg Railroad, one of the oldest operating railroads in the whole world.

Here are pictures from my visit: