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12310
Connecticut/New Hampshire/Massachusetts

An Epic Railroad Journey: New England History Comes to Life

From the Essex Steam Train in Connecticut to the Cog Railway up New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, discover the history and charm of New England’s railroads.
Rating (5)
Program No. 12310RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,849
Connecticut/New Hampshire/Massachusetts

An Epic Railroad Journey: New England History Comes to Life

From the Essex Steam Train in Connecticut to the Cog Railway up New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, discover the history and charm of New England’s railroads.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,849
Program No. 12310 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 18 - Sep 23, 2021
Starting at
1,849
Oct 3 - Oct 8, 2021
Starting at
1,849
Jul 17 - Jul 22, 2022
Starting at
1,899
Sep 24 - Sep 29, 2022
Starting at
1,899
Oct 2 - Oct 7, 2022
Starting at
1,899
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 18 - Sep 23, 2021
Starting at
2,329
Oct 3 - Oct 8, 2021
Starting at
2,329
Jul 17 - Jul 22, 2022
Starting at
2,379
Sep 24 - Sep 29, 2022
Starting at
2,379
Oct 2 - Oct 7, 2022
Starting at
2,379

At a Glance

The historic tracks of New England’s railroads chug to exhilarating life on an educational adventure through the Connecticut River Valley and the mountains of New Hampshire and Vermont. Travelling by motor coach, experience a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the railroad industry through historically narrated train rides, private museum lectures and as you meet the passionate people who operate and restore these beautiful locomotives. Experience New England with a fresh perspective — seacoast to bucolic valleys to a mountain summit — as you are immersed in an essential piece of American transportation history.
Activity Level
On Your Feet
Walking over varied terrain and standing on field trips. Boarding and disembarking motorcoaches and trains several times a day.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Hear about New Hampshire’s railroads from a railroad historian, and then join him aboard the Conway Notch Train.
  • Board the Mount Washington Cog for a journey to the highest peak in New England.
  • Ride the beautiful Cafe Lafayette Dinner Train on a scenic journey along the Pemigewasset River.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Paul Giblin
Responsible for the development, management and implementation of public relations, marketing and brand management initiatives for two of the most popular tourist railroad operations in the northeastern United States - the Hobo Railroad in Lincoln, NH and the Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad in Meredith, NH. Additional responsibilities include strategic planning efforts as well as the development and facilitation of business development opportunities into emerging growth areas throughout New England and the northeastern United States.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Ben English
Ben English View biography
Ben English is a retired history teacher and firefighter who studies and chronicles the history of New Hampshire. The railroads of the Granite State are a particular area of expertise. His knowledge is displayed in the books “Trackside Around New Hampshire 1950-1970 with Ben English, Jr.” and “A Century of Railroading in Crawford Notch,” a steep and narrow gorge in the White Mountains. Ben lives in Jackson, N.H., and is a member of the Bartlett Historical Society.
Profile Image of Paul Giblin
Paul Giblin View biography
Responsible for the development, management and implementation of public relations, marketing and brand management initiatives for two of the most popular tourist railroad operations in the northeastern United States - the Hobo Railroad in Lincoln, NH and the Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroad in Meredith, NH. Additional responsibilities include strategic planning efforts as well as the development and facilitation of business development opportunities into emerging growth areas throughout New England and the northeastern United States.
Profile Image of Carl Lindblade
Carl Lindblade View biography
Carl Lindblade served as the interim director of travel and tourism for the State of New Hampshire and now teaches hospitality at the University of New Hampshire while offering a series of lectures on railroads, the international monetary fund and the story of the great ocean liners in WWII. He has managed 3 and 4 diamond hotels in New Hampshire, Maine and New Jersey — awards include Innkeeper of the Year and Tourism Person of the Year.
Profile Image of Corinne Lunnin
Corinne Lunnin View biography
Corinne Lunnin is an ITMI Certified Tour Director and native New Englander. She has led tours on both U.S. coasts, eastern Canada, and more, especially through the beautiful northeast region she calls home. Her over-the-road career began in 2010 as assistant tour manager for Sesame Street Live, which led to more opportunities including touring with a circus and working with FC Bayern Munich and Manchester United as tour liaison during the International Champions Cup USA tour. Corinne has worked with Road Scholar since 2014.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
SYLVESTER MARSH and the COG RAILWAY
by Richard S. Joslin
Containing many high quality pictures, the book chronicles the life and times of Sylvester Marsh. It provides an interesting look into the life and accomplishments of this ingenious man. This book is available from the Mount Washington Cog railway.
WHEN THE RAILROAD LEAVES TOWN
by Joseph P Schwieterman
This volume tells the story of transportation providers struggling to survive in a changing economy only to surrender to the relentless forces of the marketplace. In many communities, the withdrawal of the railroad had unexpected consequences; in others, it forever altered the rhythm of daily life. (Vol. 1, Eastern United States)
RAILROAD HISTORY
by Railorad & Locomotive Histroical Society
This book takes you into the lives and stories of railroads and railroaders throughout history.
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6 days
5 nights
15 meals
5 B 5 L 5 D
DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Welcome Dinner, Orientation
Windsor Locks, CT
D
Sheraton Hartford Hotel at Bradley Airport

Activity note: Hotel check-in available from 3:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Program Registration: 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. After you have your room assignment, join us at the Road Scholar table in the main lobby to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing the up-to-date schedule that reflects any changes, other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet when you check in.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a buffet dinner with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: Orientation. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Periods in the schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
2
Essex Steam Train & Riverboat, Connecticut Trolley Museum
Windsor Locks, CT
B,L,D
Sheraton Hartford Hotel at Bradley Airport

Activity note: Getting on/off a motorcoach; driving approximately 101 miles roundtrip; about 2 hours. Walking approximately 1 mile; about 1.5 hours; uneven ground. Getting on/off train; ride is about 12 miles roundtrip; over 1 hour. Getting on/off riverboat; ride is over 1 hour.

Breakfast: At the hotel, we’ll have a buffet that includes a variety of choices including entrées, fruit, and cereal, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: Once aboard our motorcoach, we’ll travel to the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat facility where our Group Leader will provide historical commentary about the area. We’ll then board the steam locomotive train at Essex Station, a historic building dating back to 1892, and enjoy a narrated ride through the beautiful Connecticut River Valley to the town of Deep River. Upon arrival, we’ll get off the train to board the Becky Thatcher riverboat and ride along the Connecticut River, admiring the quintessentially New England scenery. As we travel, we’ll see the impressive sites of Gillette Castle, Goodspeed Opera House, and the Haddam Swing Bridge.

Lunch: On the boat during our field trip, we’ll have our pre-selected boxed lunches featuring an assortment of sandwiches and bottled water.

Afternoon: Our riverboat will navigate back to Deep River Landing where we’ll get back on the steam locomotive and make our way back to Essex Station. Upon conclusion of our boat and steam engine field trip, we’ll then travel to the Connecticut Trolley Museum for a private exploration led by museum staff with accompanying commentary. This museum contains a variety of trolley cars as well as exhibits on the societal impact of the Trolley Era. We will then take a ride on one of the trolley cars that has been returned to service, visit the Fire Truck Museum, and check out the Visitor’s Center that are also on site.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a buffet meal with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: We will then be joined at the hotel by a member of the Connecticut Historical Society for a lecture about Connecticut during the period of the American Revolution, during which we will explore the subjects of historical patriotism and loyalty in the age of British occupation. Be sure to prepare for check-out and transfer in the morning.

DAY
3
Lake Winnipesaukee Railroad, Indian Head Resort
Lincoln, NH
B,L,D
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving approximately 241 miles from CT to NH. Getting on/off train; ride is approximately 16 miles one way; about 2 hours. Walking approximately 1 mile; about 1 hour; uneven terrain.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: After checking out of the hotel, we’ll board our motorcoach for a trip through the Connecticut River Valley to the Lakes Region of New Hampshire and the Lake Winnipesaukee Railroad in Meredith. We’ll arrive at the railway station in time for a short lecture prior to boarding the train given by a local railroad historian about the history of the hoboism and Lake Winnipesaukee Railroads. Following our talk with our historian we board our train for a scenic journey.

Lunch: Aboard the train, we’ll enjoy a delicious plated meal of hot turkey with all the trimmings, plus coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase. During our lunch, we’ll enjoy narration about the surrounding sites and a talk about the train with our local historian.

Afternoon: Following the train ride, we will take a short walk to the privately owned Pullman Lounger Car “Cold Harbor” where we will meet with the owner who will talk about the railroad history of his family, the history of the car, and then take us inside for a short exploration of the accommodations. Next, we will head north via motorcoach into the White Mountains and check in at the hotel while being greeted by the staff upon arrival.

Dinner: At the hotel, we will have a choice of plated meals from a select menu with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. You may wish to check out the musical entertainment in the lounge, which varies nightly.

DAY
4
Mount Washington Cog Railway, Cog Museum, Historic Hotel
Lincoln, NH
B,L,D
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving approximately 60 miles; about 1.5 hours, with stops. Walking up to 1.5 miles during group activities throughout the day. Walking according to personal preference at Mount Washington for about 1 hour; uneven terrain, grass, rocks, dirt, some paved areas. Mount Washington has an elevation of about 6,300 feet. The summit has quite extreme and rapidly changing weather conditions throughout the year, please dress accordingly and bring extra layers

Breakfast: At the hotel, we’ll enjoy a tasty breakfast buffet that will include eggs, waffles, fruit, yogurt, pastries, and cereal, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: Boarding our motorcoach, we will travel to Mount Washington where we will board the Cog Railroad for a scenic ride to the summit as we listen to commentary provided by train staff and our local expert. At the top, take some time to explore independently and enjoy the beautiful views from the tallest mountain peak in the Northeastern United States. We’ll meet at a predetermined time and place for the ride back down via the Cog Railway. Back at the bottom, we’ll board the motorcoach and travel to the historic Mount Washington Hotel.

Lunch: At the historic Mount Washington Hotel, we’ll enjoy a spectacular buffet lunch, with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: This afternoon we enjoy an expert-led exploration of this historic property while enjoying informative commentary as we go. We’ll then return to the hotel.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll choose plated meals from a select menu, with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase. Share some of your favorite experiences so far from the program with new Road Scholar friends.

Evening: The remainder of the evening will be at leisure. You may wish to check out the nightly musical entertainment in the hotel lounge.

DAY
5
Conway Scenic Railroad, Café Lafayette Dinner Train
Lincoln, NH
B,L,D
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving approximately 83 miles; about 2.5 hours total. Getting on/off trains; total duration aboard is approximately 2 hours. Walking about 1 mile; approximately 1 hour. Traveling at some high elevations.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: Travel over the Kancamagus highway to North Conway by motorcoach where we will board the Conway Scenic Railroad to take a ride through Crawford Notch. A historian will join us on our trip and present a private narrative lecture on the history of the Conway Scenic Railroad and Crawford Notch.

Lunch: Aboard the train on the way to Crawford Notch, we’ll have preselected boxed lunches featuring a choice of sandwich, salad, a cookie, and a drink.

Afternoon: After the train ride, we’ll return to the hotel via motorcoach. The remainder of the afternoon will be free for independent exploration.

Dinner: Aboard the Café Lafayette Dinner Train, we will have an exceptional dining experience over a 4-course plated gourmet meal while watching the ever-changing scenery of the Pemigewasset River and the surrounding area.

Evening: At leisure. Be sure to prepare for check-out and departures in the morning. Nightly entertainment will be in the lounge if you wish to attend.

DAY
6
Bellows Falls Train Station, Program Concludes
Lincoln, NH
B,L

Activity note: Hotel check-out by 7:30 a.m. Getting on/off motorcoach; driving approximately 201 miles; about 4 hours. Expected drop-off times of approximately 1:30 p.m. at airport, and about 2:00 p.m. at starting hotel.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: After checking out of the hotel, we’ll transfer via motorcoach for drop-offs at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, and then at our nearby starting hotel. En route, we will make a stop at the Bellows Falls Train Station for a rest break.

Lunch: Aboard the motorcoach during our transfer to the airport, we’ll have our pre-selected boxed lunches featuring a sandwich, chips, cookie and bottled water.

Afternoon: Continuing, we expect to arrive at the airport by approximately 1:30 p.m., and to the hotel by about 2:00 p.m. Booking flights after 3:00 p.m. is recommended. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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