There’s nothing quite like watching the clouds and ground below when you’re flying. But have you ever tried being a little more down to earth and taking the train? It’s just as, if not more beautiful, especially this time of year as the seasons are changing. Let’s head to Hood River to see why TimeOut considers this railroad one of the nation’s best.

TimeOut created a list of the nation’s most scenic railroads for a fall train ride. It’s no surprise that a west coast railroad made the list but it also might be one that you’re not as familiar with.

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The top ten scenic railroads in the nation are as follows:

  1. Amtrak Vermonter | St. Albans, VT
  2. Osceola & St. Croix Valley Railway | St. Paul, MN
  3. Mount Washington Cog Railway | Mount Washington, NH
  4. Colebrookdale Railroad | Boyertown, PA
  5. Belfast and Moosehead Lake Railroad | Unity, ME
  6. Southern Michigan Railroad Society | Tecumseh, MI
  7. Mt. Hood Railroad | Hood River, OR
  8. Hobo and Winnipesaukee Scenic Railroads | Meredith, NH
  9. Blue Ridge Scenic Railway | Blue Ridge, GA
  10. Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad | Peninsula, OH


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The Hood River Valley Train Excursion is a part of the Mount Hood Railroad which is located about a 3.5-hour drive from Seattle. Train passengers get to enjoy a ride that takes them along 3 miles of the lower main fork of the Hood River and up a 3% grade that travels along one of only five switchbacks remaining in the United States. All the while, you’ll be able to catch peek-a-boo views of Mt Hood, which just so happens to be Oregon’s tallest peak.

If that doesn’t sound like an ideal way to spend a fall day, we’re not sure what does. Tickets cost $49 and can be purchased through the Mount Hood Railroad.