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WEB EXCLUSIVE! Three more scenic fall train rides

Courtesy Vermont Railroad

My Old Kentucky Home Dinner Train
Bardstown, Ky.

Past rolling horse farms, tobacco fields and forests, the Old Kentucky Home Dinner Train takes passengers through the heart of the Bluegrass state. Known for its bright fall colors, the train lets guests dine in restored 1940s vintage cars while enjoying the view.

The two-hour route’s meal is prepared during the trip by a check in the kitchen car to serve fresh. Some of the sights along the excursion include the 14,000-acre Bernheim Forest, Jim Beam distillery, Limestone Springs and the Sisters of Charity motherhouse called Nazareth.

The 1860 depot the train uses once carried passengers along a service from Louisville to Nashville. The native limestone construction of the depot makes it one of the last remaining “dry-laid” limestone depots in Kentucky, which helped earn its place on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Jackson Hollow Trestle remains a favorite stretch of the train with a completely timber structure extending 310 feet across and 60 feet above the hollow floor. The R. J. Corman Railroad Company that owns the dinner train conducted many rehabilitation projects on the bridge, but kept the timber structure intact.

For a more thrilling experience, add a touch of detective work to the meal at the Murder Mystery Dinners.

The Toonerville Trolley and Riverboat Tour
Soo Junction, Mich.
If riding past autumn foliage in a train isn’t enough, at the Toonerville Trolley and Riverboat Tour, visitors can enjoy views from the rails and views from the water.

Upper Michigan’s wilderness seems to roll past along the train portion of the ride. Bear, deer and a variety of birds live in the habitat of the Tahquamenon Falls State Park, which the train chugs through.

The train stops at Tahquamenon River where a Riverboat waits to take visitors on a 21-mile narrated cruise down the river. Eventually, the boat stops beside the rapids a half-a-mile above the Upper Tahquamenon Falls.

The Upper Falls is one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi at a height of 50 feet and a width of 200 feet. Boat passengers walk up to the falls and listen to more than 500,000 gallons of water cascading down the precipice before the boat returns to the original train stop.

While guests watch the fall colors along the shore, the Captain relates river history, Native American lore and the location of any wildlife spotted. The cruise also offers food and beverages for passengers.

The Toonerville Trolley then takes guests back 5.5 miles through the park with a tree guide available for identifying which native trees produce the most vivid fall colors.

Green Mountains Railroad
Bellow Falls, Vt.
In 1843, the first railroad tracks were laid on the Green Mountain Railroad in Bellow Falls, Vt. Coined the “Mountain Track,” the railroad rounded the peaks of the Green Mountains to Boston with lumber, milk, grain and people.

Today, the focus stays on the scenic aspect of the route, with the Green Mountain Flyer route running from Bellow Falls to Chester Depot, Vt. Fully restored 1930s passenger coaches take guests on the 2-hour round-trip in style.

The path passes farmland, two covered bridges, a cascading waterfall and the Brockways Mills Gorge for visitors to see Vermont’s rural charm alongside its famous New England fall foliage. Passengers disembark at Chester Depot for 30 minutes to tour the 1852 train station, participate in a lobster bake or eat barbeque by the river.

Another route the Green Mountains Railroad offers is the Champlain Valley Flyer from Burlington to Charlotte. Past Lake Champlain’s waterfront to Charlotte and Pelkey’s Berry Farm and Winery, the train route shows some of the historic communities and picturesque landscapes of the Champlain Valley.

Similar to the Green Mountain Flyer, the White River Flyer travels with mountain panoramas, since it runs within eyesight of the foothills of the White Mountains. Winding along the White River, the path offers round trip excursions to Norwich and the Montshire Museum of Science. Passengers have a good chance to see wildlife along this roué, since the train goes through a wildlife sanctuary.

Read more:
All aboard for autumn: Scenic fall foliage train rides