Finally, we got aboard the Port Stanley Terminal Rail and took a two-hour train ride to see the fall colours.
I’d researched and written about the history of PSTR, but hadn’t experienced it. Neighbours have taken their grandkids aboard, everyone speaks fondly of the attraction, and I was ready for a post-Covid adventure. (For the record, I was 3-days running with negative tests and feeling better.)
We chose the fall colours trip on Sunday afternoon. How lucky for us that our seatmates included one of the PSTR’s volunteer conductors! We enjoyed getting to know Peter and Karen as we rode at 15 MPG through changing leaves, into downtown St. Thomas and back.
This was a special event trip, as opposed to the regular runs. There was entertainment on board by R and R, with a sax player. They performed classic country and blues. The cash bar was busy. It was like attending a well-behaved party in motion. I’m told the usual train has wooden seats. These were padded and very comfy.
Here’s a little taste!
Maybe it was the interesting company. Maybe it was the newness of the experience or the familiar music. Probably a combination. Because two hours went by like snapping your fingers. It was a fresh perspective on a route we’ve driven along or near hundreds of times.
I know what you’re wondering! Yes, there’s a bathroom on board. Getting to it gave me my only moment of uncertainty. Trains sway a little – it’s part of their charm – and I thought I was going to take out the drum kit as I passed by the band! But I stayed upright. Whew.
TAKE THE TRAIN
Upcoming murder mystery rides are sold out. They host theme rides for holidays and the train’s a popular attraction for families. But a murder mystery on a train? How perfect! No wonder the tickets get snapped up so fast. There’s even a waiting list.
PSTR offers a fairly busy schedule but there would be more trips if they had enough volunteers. Covid took a huge bite out of their volunteer base, which is now about one-third of what it was. They need people who are willing to train as conductors, ticket-takers, gift shop workers, support staff etc. This is an experience that other towns can’t replicate. I can’t wait to do it again.