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SemperParatus

Ridin' the Rails

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Our PLC is toying with a trip idea of transporting ourselves and gear on railroad tracks using those old style railroad push carts. Thought is to find a 25+ mile lay of track that is maintained (by railroading club or tourist train outfit) and propelling ourselves to a camping destination for a real 'hobo' style campout.

 

Anyone ever tried this before? Do you know of any possible railroading clubs/orgs on the east coast that may offer such an experience? Safety considerations? Other thoughts?

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Hi Semper,

Personally, I have no idea, but that sounds like an awesome trip idea. I bet some at the nearest railway station could tell you about safety, and companies that might do such a trip, or at least a better place to start looking... let us know how it turns out :-D

-Curtis

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There is a national organization called Rails to Trails, that rehabilitates former railroad track sites into suitable hiking trails. You can find them online with a simple search. There you can find info on suitable and available trails.

 

There are a number of excursion type trains run by clubs or for profit entities. Best bet is to have an idea of where you want to camp, then locate org.'s in that area and contact them as to possibility of doing what you suggest.

 

By the way, I have found that there are many high adventure camps in the Mid-Atlantic and SE that are in close proximity to these type of scenic train excursions. Smoky Mtn RR, TN Valley RR, Blue Riidge Scenic RR, just to name a few . . . I would be interested in hearing how it goes.

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Hey Semper---

 

If you find a stretch of track like that that is all downhill, let me know. I'd like to go along!

 

 

Reminds me of the longest bicycle descent I ever did ---26 miles and about 5,000 feet of elevation loss in one long, smooth descent from a pass through the Blue Mountains south of Walla Walla, Washington.

 

Of course, before that it had been about 5,000 feet of elevation gain in 26 miles going up the other side. At the time, I was in pretty good condition and just ground it out. That was about 1982 or so.

 

 

 

Seattle Pioneer

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SemperParatus,

NationalGeographic Society did an article about the rails using small carts on abandon tracks some time back(years).They did several other articles about the Greenways Past to Present also. Most of the "Trail to Rails" are for foot traffic and bike. In southern Pennsylvania there several short tracks; contact Stewartstown there is a nice short line there that is privatety own they mite help. The National Park Service,Has Steamtown, Pa., which deals on trains, contacting them with a service project along the way/tracks could be awy too. The Coal companies in West Viginia,and western Virginia, and Pennsylvania own a great deal of tracks, another sources to look into.

Another way is from Washington,D.C. to Williamsburg, Virginia,working on Railroad Merit Badge, American Heritage, Archaeology,maybe Cinematography. Camping at Williamsburg, and Jamestown.

I believe talking with the Railroads could help, but with the crackdown on security, it could be a thing of the past. Search the websites, Best of Luck,

You could try the Eire Canal or other canals on the east coast,where you can camp every night along the way, most of the towns have events ,...

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SP-

You may want to look at the Adirondack Scenic Railroad

 

 

They run a Train trip from Utica, NY into Old Forge in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains. From Old Forge, you could rent canoe/kayaks or mountain bikes or hike into the Adirondack Mountains.

 

Not exactly what you are looking for but a great trip anyways

 

CNYScouter(This message has been edited by CNYScouter)

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