Excursions

2017 – The Roanoker

 

The Roanoker – Greensboro, North Carolina to Roanoke, Virginia

 

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April 22 & 23, 2017

  • Standard Coach: $169, includes a complimentary boxed breakfast and afternoon snack
  • Deluxe Coach: $209, includes a complimentary boxed breakfast and afternoon snack
  • Parlor Class: $299, includes a complimentary hot breakfast and boxed afternoon meal served at your seat, plus complimentary hors d’oeuvres, soft drinks, and coffee
  • Dome Class: $399, includes a complimentary hot breakfast and boxed afternoon meal served at your seat, plus complimentary hors d’oeuvres, soft drinks, and coffee
  • Chairmans Class: $549, the ultimate in luxury and service. Attendants will prepare and serve hot meals, hors d’oeuvres, and soft drinks while you relax in this exclusive section of the train.

Get more information on cars and classes of service.

6:00 AM Boarding in Greensboro
7:00 AM Depart Greensboro
12:30 PM Arrive Roanoke
3:00 PM Depart Roanoke
8:00 PM Arrive Greensboro

This full day round trip follows the old Southern Railway mainline north from Greensboro almost to Altavista where we run over the old Virginian Railway line to Roanoke. We depart from historic Greensboro, the location of the Battle of Guilford Courthouse during the Revolutionary War. The ride takes us through the heart of North Carolina tobacco country and its beautiful rolling hills. We pass Reidsville where tobacco and furniture were huge industries.

Crossing into Virginia, we pass Danville, tobacco capital of Virginia with its “Bright Leaf” product. Before crossing the Dan River, we ride past Danville’s river district where the old Southern station is home to the Danville Science Center. After crossing the river, we soon pass the site of the famous “Wreck of the Old 97,” where a train derailed in 1903 as it was crossing the Stillhouse trestle at the base of White Oak Mountain. We’ll then pass the restored Southern Railway depot as you ride through Chatham, home of Chatham Hall and the Hargrave Military Academy. We turn west at Hurt on the rails built in 1982 to connect the N&W and Southern. Our journey continues on through remote countryside on the tracks of the former Virginian Railway, which has seldom been used for excursions and is a rare treat for our riders.

We will follow the old Virginian mainline to Vinton. Along the way you will see portions of Leesville and Smith Mountain Lakes, built as a pumped storage impoundment project to create electricity for American Electric Power. We turn right at Vinton on the connector to the old N&W and come in just east of Furnace Crossing and the Roanoke Shops.

As we arrive in Roanoke, we’ll pass the famous N&W East End Shops where the 611 and her thirteen sisters were built. During your layover in Roanoke, antique buses from the Commonwealth Coach and Trolley Museum will take you right into the famous City Market where there are many restaurants and shops to visit. The buses will shuttle during your entire time in the Star City, and will be making stops at the Virginia Museum of Transportation—the home of the 611 and other great examples of N&W steam. Take the time to enjoy other Roanoke attractions, such as the O. Winston Link Museum. Enjoy a stroll on the Railwalk along the NS Mainline before reboarding for your return trip to Greensboro.

  • Boarding location: the Greensboro Amtrak Station, 236 East Washington Street, Greensboro, NC 27401. Plan to arrive at least 1 hour prior to departure.
  • No diesel assist anticipated.
  • Disembark behind the O. Winston Link Museum and enjoy a layover of approximately three hours in walkable downtown Roanoke with free bus service provided to the City Market and the Virginia Museum of Transportation.
  • Complimentary snack served in the morning and in the afternoon, plus bottled water. Commissary car available, and you may bring a small personal cooler.
  • Nearby hotels, restaurants and attractions in Greensboro: Visit Greensboro NC  
  • Parking: View the City of Greensboro parking map. Additional instructions regarding parking will be sent with your boarding instructions and other trip details 72 hours prior to the event.
  • Getting Here:
    By car: Greensboro is located in central North Carolina on Interstate 40.  
    By passenger rail: The Greensboro Amtrak station is on the Carolinian/Piedmont and Crescent routes.
    By air: Greensboro is served by Piedmont Triad International Airport.