Nothin' Could Be Finer

Trip Start Mar 07, 1997
Trip End Dec 25, 1998

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Flag of United States  , Tennessee
Friday, August 14, 1998

Go with me? Alas, the fictional Choo-Choo of the tune that made Chattanooga famous never did stop at Track 29. In fact, there no longer is a passenger train of any kind to whisk us away for ham'n eggs in Carolina. But during August, we can catch the Downtown Arrow at the Choo-Choo's Terminal Station for a real-time journey to the good old days of pocket watches and "all aboards."

Thanks to a team of volunteers with hearts dedicated to authentic restoration, Chattanoogans have bragging rights to the largest operating historic railroad in the South. The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum has a supberb collection of engines and rail cars at Grand Junction Depot on Cromwell Road. Allow plenty of time to walk through, climb on, and reminisce; the collection has been nearly forty years in the making and continues to grow.

Any time of year you can purchase a ticket here for a real train ride to the East Chattanooga Depot and a visit to the Museum's huge workshop. There you can watch as the engine that brought you slowly revolves on the giant turntable and reattaches to your railcar for the ride back.

But summertime calls for extra trips, and that's where the Choo-Choo comes in. Three trips beginning at either Grand Junction Depot or the Choo-Choo's Terminal Station are available on weekends; the roundtrips take a little more than three hours.

Wander through Terminal Station for more reminders of railroading; it once serviced 48 passenger trains a day. The lobby is gorgeous -- look up -- it has the highest dome of its kind in the world. Don't get too distracted though, the conductor is standing by to punch your ticket. See you there.

Terminal Station and Grand Junction Depot, Chattanooga
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