Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad Starts Regular Summer Train Rides
(Garibaldi, Oregon) - It's about that time of year again. The sound of an antique steam train and its iconic whistle and puffs of smoke will once more be chugging along the tracks of the north coast, offering a host of unforgettable moments to riders and those simply driving by.
The Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad has started regular weekend runs, and in July and August will be running every day.
In June, you can catch these hour-and-a-half trips – called Coastal Excursions – every Saturday and Sunday. They start out in Garibaldi at noon, make it into Rockaway Beach at 1 p.m., and then head back again. At 2 p.m. the train stops in Garibaldi, and at 3 p.m. it's back to Rockaway Beach, and then at 4 p.m. the last pickup is at Garibaldi again. Each Coastal Excursion trip includes a layover in the opposite town from which you boarded, so you can check out that town's sights and attractions.
Cost is $16 for adults, $15 for seniors (62 and over) and $9 for kids (3-10 years old). Under two years old is free.
There are special locomotive cab rides available, if you'd like to be right near the big engine. Those are $50 and limited to two per trip. They are also only available at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m., and not open to children under seven years old.
A handful of special trains are offered throughout the season as well. The Mother's Day train is always a huge one.
These “sunset dinner trains” offer food and the breathtaking sights of the north coast. Each train ride about is three hours long, from Garibaldi, past Rockaway Beach and all the way north to Wheeler. It's a time-tripping trip around two bays of the north Oregon coast on a vintage F-7 diesel locomotive. You'll see some impressive vistas between Garibaldi and Wheeler. The earlier you make your reservation, the better chance you have to get an oceanside table.
The dinner trains are four-course, catered meals, and the menu may be different each time.
Next up is the Father's Day Dinner Train on June 16. There are two sunset dinner trains in July: one on July 14 and the other July 28. August 18 is the date for that month, with two in September: the Labor Day Dinner Train on September 1 and another on September 15.
Prices: Sunset Dinner/Child Ticket $52.50. Sunset Dinner/Wild Salmon entree $73.50. Sunset Dinner/Pork Loin Entree $73.50. Sunset Dinner/Prime Rib Entree $73.50.
June 30 is the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad's 10th anniversary, where two steam engines will pull the day's scenic rides between Garibaldi and Rockaway. You'll have the Heisler #2 and McCloud #25 both puffing along the tracks. Regular prices are in effect that day.
For the Fourth of July, there's the Firework Spectacular, starting at Garibaldi at 8:30 p.m.
Ride behind a vintage locomotive to Rockaway Beach to watch that town's always memorable fireworks display. The train returns after the show (roughly 11:15 p.m.). Food and beverages are allowed. However, alcohol and fireworks are not permitted on board. Tickets are $10 - $18.
Call the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad at (503) 842-7972 for more information, or see its website, www.ocsr.net. Tickets to all rides can be purchased online – but make sure you do so well ahead of time, as these train rides are becoming extremely popular.
Below: Garibaldi and Rockaway Beach
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