A Summer of Antique Rail Rides on Oregon Coast
(Garibaldi, Oregon) – Welcome aboard this summer, as the Oregon Coast Crawler and the Oregon Coast Explorer take you on an a variety of heady journeys originating in Garibaldi. It’s a leisurely journey up the Oregon coast, as the train huffs and puffs along the north coast, affording big, panoramic views of both Tillamook Bay and Nehalem Bay. These vintage, antique trains stop for lunch and free time at Wheeler as well as Rockaway Beach.
Many of the train excursions happen on a 1910 Heisler Steam Locomotive. These occur on just about every Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday in July and August, while numerous special trips run on other dates.
After making a service stop, and photo run-by or two, it is all done again in reverse, allowing for different sightseeing opportunities on the return trip.
“No other railroad in North America offers the range of scenery found on the Tillamook Branch Line, and no train in recent years has made it possible to experience it all behind steam power,” said a spokesman for the train rides.
The regular weekend rides depart from Garibaldi at noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m., and depart from Rockaway Beach at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Coach seating is $15 for adults and $7 for kids 3-10 yrs. Children two and under are free. Locomotive cab rides are $30 and are limited to two people per trip.
There are special train runs scheduled, including July 4, July 17, July 24, July 31, August 14, 28, and September 11 and 18.
Some of these include a minimum of three photo run-bys that have been scheduled, and more will be added if time permits. Lunch will be served at picnic-style. Concessions will be available for purchase onboard the train. It is limited to less than 100 passengers, so organizers highly recommend making your reservations soon. Special rides link here for online reservations. Other regular tour information is at http://www.ocsr.net.
The “Fireworks Spectacular” happens on July 4. Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad (OCSR) provides an annual trip to view the fireworks in Rockaway Beach. The train departs at 8:30 P.M. and returns after the show. Cab rides will not be offered on this trip.
The Oregon Coast Crawler chugs down the tracks on July 24. Rails Northwest has chartered OCSR for an all day excursion. Departing at 10 a.m., the train will travel north along Tillamook Bay and the Pacific Ocean to Wheeler. At Wheeler a picnic lunch will be served. On the return trip a stop at Rockaway Beach will be offered.
Tickets for this trip are sold through Rails Northwest.
Various Sunset Dinner Trains happen on July 18, 31, and August 14 and 28. These are $69 per person. Menu items differ, but may include dishes like baked wild salmon with lemon dill sauce, glazed pork loin with herbs, vegetable lasagna, roasted red potatoes and cheesecake with fresh berries, among other selections. 503-842-7972.
On September 11, there’s a DME Big Easy Express, an afternoon rail and musical adventure pulled by a vintage steam engine. It features the 'Big Easy Beat', live New Orleans style music throughout the day. An onboard lunch is served to your seat, made with fresh local ingredients. Free time is scheduled at Wheeler at the train’s turnaround. This one goes from noon to 3:30 p.m.
Big Easy Express link is here for information and online reservations. You must reserve by July 19 to receive the discounted early booking $98 ticket price. After that date, the full ticket price will be $118. 503-292-5055
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