Hi friends, welcome back to the final installment of our time in the Catskills. On our last full day we had an early wakeup call to ride the Rail Explorers. I was very excited for this activity because I’d always wanted to try them. It looked like a fun and relaxing time, but I didn’t know what exactly to expect. When we were booking, we were deciding between an 8am and 4pm slot and by the time we went to book later that day, only the 8am slot was left. Our slight procrastination paid off because it down poured all afternoon, but we had perfect weather.
The bikes come in two and four seaters and we were in a two-seater. We were in the second car to go out and the couple in front of us went fast, so it felt like we had the whole track to ourselves. The bikes were easy to pedal and you don’t have to steer. The hardest part for us was not going too fast so we could enjoy it. The bikes were a bit noisy so it was difficult to have conversations. Parts of the trail had some cushioning to muffle the noise when we briefly passed by a residential area.
It felt so great to breeze through the fresh air on these rail bikes. The trail went through the woods along the Espous Creek with a turnaround about four miles away.
There was one railroad crossing we had to make and we waited so they could connect all the bikes like a real train. The railroad crossing guardrails went down and on the count of three we all pedaled across together. It cracked me up seeing all the cars stopped while we crossed.
Halfway through there is an area to sit along the creek while the bikes are turned around. There is a special part of the track that elevates so they can easily rotate the bike the other way. We were very curious how they would do this because the cars weigh 400 and 750 pounds.
On the way back we were the second to last car and this time we had to be careful not to tailgate the bike in front of us that were slower. They also turned on the pedal assist this time so we didn’t have to work as hard to keep moving, but we could definitely tell when it wasn’t on after we had slowed our pedals.
We really enjoyed the rail explorers and I’d highly recommend booking them if you’re ever in the area of one. This company also has them in Rhode Island and Kentucky. I think it would be cool if they had adventurous rail explorers that was a bit like a mini roller coaster, but that would probably be a big liability.
The rest of the day was a total downpour so we took our car to have the annual New York inspection and I made a lot of progress on my book. We were VERY glad we hadn’t booked the 4pm tour. For dinner we made some delicious shish kebobs on the grill.
The following morning we packed up and hit the road back to NYC early before the highway shut down for the fireworks. We had the easiest drive back and didn’t hit one bit of traffic.
Despite the smoke and heavy rain, we had a great time relaxing in the Catskills! It’s a great escape to have just a short drive from NYC. Hopefully soon we can return to see the fall foliage 🙂