Historic Rail News & Notes

Fall trips aboard the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway are being planned now. Autumn is the perfect time for an excursion through the mountains of northern Georgia. Photo courtesy of the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway.

Scenic railways booking fall foliage tours

If you’re one of those avid travelers who’s overdue for a train ride, now is the time to book a fall foliage tour on the many scenic railroads offering special autumn excursions.

One option is no further away than north central Georgia. The Blue Ridge Scenic Railway makes trips through the Chattahoochee National Forest to McCaysville, GA, and Copperhill, TN. The four-hour excursion aboard vintage passenger cars is 26 miles round trip and follows the Toccoa River through the North Georgia countryside.

Tickets are available now for summer trips through Sept. 20, followed by the fall foliage tours that can be booked from Sept. 24 to Nov. 8. The BRSR is located at 241 Depot St., Blue Ridge, GA. The number for more information is (877) 413-8724. The website is brscenic.com.

The Blue Ridge excursion made the top 10 best fall foliage rides as complied by Country Living magazine Visit countryliving.com. Other notables on the magazine's list are:

• Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad, Elkins, WV www.mountainrail.com

• Essex Steam Train, Essex, CT essexsteamtrain.com

• Colebrookdale Railroad, Boyertown, PA www.colebrookdalerailroad.com

• Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad, Antonito, CO cumbrestoltec.com

• Green Mountain Railroad, Chester, VT www.rails-vt.com

The Naples Depot Museum is housed in a former Seaboard Air Line Railway station. Exhibits there trace the history of rail service in the Gulf Coast community and how railroads contributed to the growth of Naples. Photo courtesy of Naples Depot Museum.

Rail history on display at Naples Depot Museum

Located in downtown Naples, the Naples Depot Museum is a restored Seaboard Air Line Railway passenger station where visitors can explore the area’s boom days of the Roaring Twenties when railroads sparked the city’s settlement and growth.

Seminole dugout canoes, a mule wagon, antique swamp buggy, and restored rail cars help tell the story of “how trade and travel transformed Naples from a napping village of 300 souls into today’s glittering Gulf Coast resort,” according to the museum.

Collier County announced the reopening of the Naples Depot Museum and other similar facilities in June, each location strictly adhering to health and safety guidelines in light of the continuing coronavirus threat.

The Naples Depot Museum is located at 1051 Fifth Ave. S. and is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. More information is available online at colliermuseums.com or by calling (239) 252-8419.