Do Hobos like Moxie?

Lincoln Travel Blog

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Hobo Railroad Station

Our original plan, after conquering Cannon Mountain, was to drive down to the Lost River Reservation and tour that area. But, this attraction, while fun sounding, also was more geared towards warmer weather and was probably at the limits of what Margo likes to do, physically. So as we were running behind, sidetracked by the beauty we had encountered along the day’s drive, we decided to skip it and head straight to the Hobo Railroad, where we planned to take a scenic drive.

 

Hobo Railroad is located in Lincoln, NH.

We might have missed peak, but not by much
Margo and I have ridden many railroads in our travels. We find them relaxing, and a good way to seen the countryside. Most of those that we end up riding are old steam engines that were built at least a hundred years ago. I didn’t know what type of train we would be riding on, but judging by both some unflattering reviews online (not Travbuddy) and the price of the tickets ($12.00). I was expecting something small, cheesy, or both.  We arrived, parked, and got our tickets. Outside they had various railcars parked on auxiliary tracks. They all looked over fairly recent vintage, but that did not mean anything. We have seen many companies that had a collection of odd and disjointed rail inventory. I took a quick look at the tracks and saw that they were standard gauge. That told me that at least it would be a full size train. The whole trip was supposed to be 1 ½ hours. That’s not very long as fare a train trips go, so I figured that must be why our tickets were only $12 per ticket.

 

We still had about 45 minutes until we were supposed to board and begin our trip.

Margo. Back to the Future
The depot has a nice gift shop and sold drinks and snacks. We were a little hungry, so we decided grab something, plus a drink. When I travel this great nation I like to sample local cuisine and food. When we were in Hawaii, I made a point of trying poi (tastes like wallpaper paste), and when in Wisconsin I made sure I had a slice of apple pie, with cheddar cheese (Yummy!) In the self serve drink cooler was a bright orange can that said “MOXIE since 1884”. I thought “Well, if it’s been around for better than 120 years, it must be some good stuff”. Cue the buzzer. Wrong answer. To me it tasted like a Root Beer that had gone bad. It was somewhat bitter to start with and then the after taste even more so. Margo was looking when I took a drink of mine, and when she saw the face I made, she didn’t even bother to open her can. She sent me back to gift shop to swap it out for a Pepsi. I later found out that Moxie is the state beverage of Maine. Those Mainers must be stout people.
Locomotive, three passenger cars, and the station.

 

We wandered around the gift shop and as it got closer to dispatch time several bus loads of people showed up. This had long since become a pattern in our New England travels. Every attraction that we visited depended on tourists (obviously) for their livelihood. But, they all also heavily catered to chartered groups. As the gift shop began to get crowded Margo and I went outside, to play.

 

Hobo Railroad caters to families, too. They had a nice little playground with an elementary school sized swing. As the busloads that had recently pulled up were full of retirees they did not seem too interested in the playground. We had it, and the swings, all to ourselves. So we pretended like we were 40 years younger and swung (is that a word?) for a bit. I went much higher than Margo did. NaneeNanee. There were also some wooden cutouts for fun photos, and we took a couple of pictures, pretending like it was really fun.

 

About this time our train pulled up and we could not fail to notice that it was a modern diesel electric locomotive.

Seconds later and still a great view
We also did not fail to notice that it was pulling only three cars. There seemed to be a lot of people for just that amount of room. We wandered back in and overheard (Is it really eavesdropping if you are supposed to hear the information?) that there were two tour groups. Each one would be given a separate car. We orphans would have the third. It turned out to be more than just Margo & I in the third car, but we still had plenty of room.

 

“All aboard!” was called so we aboarded and found a seat. The only bad news about our seating arrangements was that our car did not have any dining tables. Yes, I know. Poor baby. But, the porter/conductor/tour guide did tell us that come lunch time we were free to move back to one of the other cars to eat. Margo and I had a whole bench seat for each of us (they faced each other, so we sat separate) and the seats across the aisle from us were also empty. Lunch was to be a sandwich, chips, and a drink. The tour guide/conductor/porter then informed us that one of the tour groups was from Quebec and spoke only French.

Whitewater on the Pemigewasset
So, come lunchtime, we could either move to another crowded car and sit with people we couldn’t understand, or we could remain where we where and place our lunch beside us, while we watched the countryside go by. Life is full of tough choices.

 

The train left the station and we and soon saw were abreast of the Pemigewasset River. The Pemigewasset is not very large, but it is very pretty. Throughout the course of this trip it would be the focal point for most of our pictures. The river, the foliage, and the White Mountains made for some of the best pictures we were to take on the whole trip.

 

As it was already lunchtime when we left the station, they started to serve lunch just minutes after we left the station. The big draw for eating on the train was not the food or even the time of day. It was that it was to be served Hobo style, wrapped in a cloth and tied to a stick.

The Jack O' Lantern Golf Course
When it came we were mildly disappointed in that lunch was not served Hobo style, but came wrapped in plastic. The guide told us that they had grown too big to make the sandwiches that quickly and still put them in the cloth and tie them up to a stick. But, they did wrap up a paper plate in a purple bandana, tied that to a stick, and presented it to us with lunch. We considered that an apt substitute, so we weren’t too heartbroken.

 

The ride to the turn around spot went pretty quickly. It was just as expected, beautiful, peaceful, and relaxing. The spot where we turned around (technically, they just threw the locomotive into reverse) was very scenic. The Hobo railroad had chosen The Jack O Lantern Golf Course in Woodstock, NH as the spot to begin the trip back. With the flat openness of the course, decorated with the occasional tree, the lush green grass, and the color splashed White Mountains in the background, it made for a great visual.

No idea what we were trying to accomplish, but I like the way this one turned out

 

The trip back went quickly, too. We took fewer pictures and enjoyed the scenery more. We got back to the station and both of us wished it could have been a little longer. But for the price we paid, we figured we got a bargain and we left with a smile on our face and fond memories of the Hobo Railroad.

rdog980 says:
I stayed at the Jack O lantern in when I was younger, that place was awesome.
Posted on: Jul 22, 2009
sylviandavid says:
Bill ... I tried poi too.... but I've got to wonder what state or country had wall paper paste as it's national food so you would have tasted it for comparison with the poi.....
Great article... I enjoy your writing and pictures.... (you post more now) Happy Travels! Sylvia
Posted on: Feb 09, 2009
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Hobo Railroad Station
Hobo Railroad Station
The owners actually live in these …
The owners actually live in these…
We might have missed peak, but not…
We might have missed peak, but no…
Margo. Back to the Future
Margo. Back to the Future
Locomotive, three passenger cars, …
Locomotive, three passenger cars,…
Seconds later and still a great vi…
Seconds later and still a great v…
Whitewater on the Pemigewasset
Whitewater on the Pemigewasset
The Jack O Lantern Golf Course
The Jack O' Lantern Golf Course
No idea what we were trying to acc…
No idea what we were trying to ac…
Margo
Margo
Beautiful day. Beautiful scenery.
Beautiful day. Beautiful scenery.
This is mine and you cant have it!
This is mine and you can't have it!
My Sunday best
My Sunday best
Margo looks happier, because she i…
Margo looks happier, because she …
Our locomotive
Our locomotive
Margo, laughing at one of the many…
Margo, laughing at one of the man…
This is my serious face.
This is my serious face.
The Pemigewasset River
The Pemigewasset River
The Pemigewasset River
The Pemigewasset River
I dont know was Pemigewasset mean…
I don't know was Pemigewasset mea…
The White Mountains in the backgro…
The White Mountains in the backgr…
We really never got tired of this …
We really never got tired of this…
Another great shot of the Pemigewa…
Another great shot of the Pemigew…
The Pemigewasset seems to be a ver…
The Pemigewasset seems to be a ve…
Crossing the Pemigewasset
Crossing the Pemigewasset
I wonder if the folks here take th…
I wonder if the folks here take t…
Lincoln Sights & Attractions review
Great Value
We had a great time on the Hobo Railroad of Lincoln, NH. This railroad uses modern type diesel electric to pull three cars on a 1 ½ hour round trip t… read entire review
Lincoln
photo by: jamartin39