Almost Heaven: West Virginia in the fall | NevadaAppeal.com

Almost Heaven: West Virginia in the fall

Marilyn Foster
The rail tour features excursions on four historic trains.
Courtesy |

It’s cool to travel to West Virginia! Even the latest country rock artists have come together to re-record the song made famous by John Denver.

This state may not even be on your travel bucket list, but if you’ve never traveled to West Virginia, especially in the colorful fall, reconsider! And, if you like historic trains, you’ll love the trip departing Oct. 12 when the leaves should be turning. East Coast foliage is different from ours.

The Chamber is holding a block of seats on the Mayflower Tours West Virginia Mountain Rails and Trails tour that will cover a lot of historic territory — mostly by rail.

If you like riding historic trains, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad, Cass Scenic Railroad, Durbin Rocket and the Salamander that climbs Cheat Mountain.

You’ll start the adventure in Pittsburgh, Pa. Here, your wheels will start turning as you visit the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum and take a ride on a restored streetcar.

Then, it’s on to Morgantown, home of Don Knotts of the “Andy Griffith Show.” It’s here you will ride the Potomac Eagle after visiting Spruce Forest Artisan Village to see local arts and crafts. Your dinner this night will be aboard the train.

Then onto Lewisburg and the Cass Scenic Railroad to see the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.

Ever heard of the Greenbrier? Not only is this the famous resort hotel, but it was the site of a bunker built to house the U.S. legislature during the Cold War era. You’ll have dinner prepared by Greenbrier chefs at Tamarack.

Since this is coal country, there’s a coal mine tour planned along with a jetboat excursion, as well as a ride on a scenic aerial tram at Hawk’s Nest State Park. The evening ends with a dinner at an 1870 mansion.

The last day of the 6-day tour finds you boarding two historic trains — the steam-powered Durbin Rocket that follows the Greenbrier River and the heat Mountain Salamander. Lunch this day will be a “hobo” lunch with bindle stick and dinner at the Railyard Restaurant in Elkins, W, Va.

There’s a lot packed into this interesting tour that includes 13 meals. Limited seats available. When the seats are gone, they’re gone.

Come by the Chamber, 1900 S. Carson St., for full details, or call 775-882-1565. You won’t want to miss this fun and interesting trip!