***Our family received complimentary admission on the Skunk Train for review purposes – all opinions are my own***
Riding the Historic Skunk Train
For anyone that doesn’t know – my son LOVES trains. As I was researching our California trip and planning family friendly activities I knew that I would try to incorporate a train ride. I had planned out most of trip except for two days when we would be traveling from the Redwoods down to the Napa/Sonoma area. I knew I wanted to visit the coast and see the cliffs on Route 1 so I searched for things to do in that area. I was very excited when I found the Historic Skunk Train in Fort Bragg!
The Skunk Train earned its name back in 1925 – head over to their website to find out more information about why. The area outside the depot was nice and set up with picnic tables so as you wait for your train ride you can have a nice picnic lunch (which we did). The depot includes the ticket window and a gift shop. The Skunk Train is very family friendly and dog friendly as well! Your dog can ride the train with you!
The Skunk Train offers a few different length rides – find more information on the options here. We chose the Pudding Creek Express as it was a shorter ride.
We boarded the train and went to the open air car (you had the option of two closed cars with seats or a standing room open air car). The kids were excited to look around and see all of the people waving as we left town. The ride was narrated on the outgoing leg and was very informative.
The fourth car on the train was a dining car where you could purchase snacks, beverages and some souvenirs (cash only). The train also had a photographer that came around and took family pictures at the beginning of the ride. She printed the pictures during the ride and you could purchase them on the train (with cash) or immediately following the ride in the ticket booth (with a card). The picture she took of our family was great and I did purchase it.
The train ride was a nice break for our family. We relaxed and took in the view. The length was perfect for our children – I think any longer and they would have started to get antsy to be done. If you are in the Fort Bragg area and are a train lover or are just looking for a relaxing way to enjoy some of Northern California’s coast I would definitely recommend a trip on the Skunk Train.
After our ride we visited the Model Railroad Exhibit that was included in our ticket price. It is only open certain hours of the day but is definitely worth a stop. The setup was pretty amazing and the kids really enjoyed watch the model trains zooming around the tracks.