Adventurers and train buffs alike can climb aboard the Saratoga & North Creek Railway train in Saratoga Springs, New York for the two and a half hour train ride to North Creek, just as the wealthy did in a previous Century.
Back in the day, the sportsmen, the wealthy and their families, and others with medical problems sought relief from the sweltering city Summers and found comfort, sport, “The Cure”, and good times in the camps, lodges, and resorts in the Adirondack Mountains.
On this day trip adventure we were happy to have Brother Ken, and our good friends, Dick, Sue, and Gary along to join us and share the fun.
It should be mentioned that any trip will get off to a grand start, as ours did, by entering the Saratoga Depot and striking up a conversation with the bright, bubbly, and friendly soul that presides over the Cafe and Gift Shoppe! Lady Myah is a force that you cannot help but enjoy meeting and being around even briefly. Former First Lady in the Dominican Republic, before the unfortunate demise of her husband the Prime Minister, she is smart, witty, well traveled, and involved in many good causes, especially for less fortunate kids. We may be seeing her again in relation to some plans she has for some of the inner city youth of New York City.
Our bewhiskered conductor gives the call and 140 of his newest passengers have their tickets punched and board the train. Some have seating in the domed dining car while our group and many others are traveling in the refurbished coaches.
Our train reaches speeds of 30MPH and passes through small hamlets and past former depots of an earlier time. We cross over the 90′ high trestle bridge over the Sacandaga River, and through dense forest land, and along many miles of Hudson River shoreline. So much different than the same river that reaches New York City and the Atlantic Ocean many miles to the South.
We reach our Northernmost destination of North Creek, NY. A sleepy hamlet that comes to life more in the Winter months as it is a short distance from Gore Mountain Ski Area.
The original North Creek Depot is now a very fine museum of local history. Admission is $2 and docents are on hand to explain any and all exhibits. The highlight for me was the beautifully constructed diorama of the area in earlier times, complete with model train and the 4 Seasons.
A good portion also concerns Teddy Roosevelt as the station is also where he learned that he was President of the United States following the assassination of President McKinley.
There is a weekend celebration each September when “Teddy Roosevelt Rides Again!” We are told a superb actor from Tennessee comes to town and “is” Teddy for the weekend. They also crank up the old Leviathan #63 Steam Train for the festivities.
Main Street, North Creek is only 100 yards from the Depot with shops and restaurants to explore during the 3 hour layover before the return trip to Saratoga.
We chose to have lunch at Izzy’s Market and Deli after reading some good reviews on the Internet. It is a small place and we were happy to see that not all 140 of our fellow passengers had chosen to lunch here. They do have some interesting sandwich and soup combinations to choose from. On this particular day every sandwich our group chose was prepared with very hard, almost “unchewable”, rolls or baguettes. That said, we all agreed that the ingredients and fixin’s inside the sandwiches were excellent and the manager did apologize and make it right for us.
After some exploring and window shopping we all reboarded the train at 3:30 for the 2 1/2 hour trip back to Saratoga.
We all agreed that we had great weather for good friends to share a grand time on a day together and a trip on a train along the rails of history.