About This Park
Take a trip back to an era when steam-driven locomotives were an essential part of everyday life. Trips to Cass Scenic Railroad State Park are filled with rich history, unparalleled views and the sights and sounds of an original lumbering town. The park’s 11-mile long heritage railroad and authentic company town are some of the state’s most popular tourist attractions. The Company Store and gift shop are open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and are a popular destination that houses The Last Run Restaurant and Soda Fountain. Stop by the visitors center for more information. Open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Cass Scenic Railroad State Park is one of America’s only authentic operating museums of lumber railroading.
The town of Cass remains relatively unchanged since its founding in 1901 by the West Virginia Pulp and Paper Company. Cass was built as a company town for the loggers who worked in the nearby mountains. Construction of the railroad started in 1901. It was used to haul lumber to the mill at Cass. The railroad track was eventually extended to the top of Bald Knob, the third highest mountain peak in West Virginia. In June 1942, the Cass operation was sold to Mower Lumber Company, which operated the town until July 1960, when the mill and railroad were shut down due to rapid decline of the timber industry in the region. In 1961, Cass was brought into the state parks system. In 1977, the company town also was made part of the parks system. Over the years, the railroad was turned into a tourist line and the town was repaired and restored. Today, the railroad is still in full operation, and is managed by the Durbin Greenbrier Valley Railroad.
Scenic Train Rides
Catch a ride on Cass Scenic Railroad State Park’s main attraction, a train ride to the overlook at Bald Knob. Bald Knob is the third highest point in West Virginia, making for a breathtaking views and amazing photos. The Durbin Greenbrier Valley Railroad operates scenic trains from historic downtown, including a 4.5-hour round-trip ride to Bald Knob and a two-hour round-trip excursion to Whittaker.
Train excursions are available Tuesdays through Sundays, plus several special events throughout the year.
To purchase tickets and view the full schedule, visit mountainrailwv.com
The Last Run Restaurant, operated by the Bodkin Sisters, features home cooking, (they’ll even pack lunches for trips up the mountain!). Sandwiches, daily specials and beverages are available at reasonable rates. Open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information about meal and dining specials, check out the Last Run Restaurant Facebook page.
During the winter, hours are Wednesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Sunday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. On Monday and Tuesday, the Soda Fountain is open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. with a hot menu.
The Last Run Restaurant was featured in the “101 Unique Places to Dine” (in West Virginia) in 2009. The Last Run Restaurant also received this honor in 2015! It’s a step back in time with good food and great people preparing it for you. If you’ve not taken time to eat at the Last Run Restaurant, you’re missing an item on your bucket list!
Art and Shopping
Cass has a restaurant and museum, plus shopping at the Company Store and the shops at Leatherbark Ford, featuring handcrafted items and artistry including paintings, needlework, quilts, blacksmithing, baskets, soaps. Guided tours of the Town of Cass are available, and the park features an intricate diorama of the town when it was a logging community.
While Cass Scenic Railroad State Park does not have any trails of its own, the Greenbrier River Trail is close by. This 78-mile-long rail trail (operated by the West Virginia state park system) is popular with hikers, bikers and horseback riders.