The Cog Railway has been going up New Hampshire’s tallest mountain since 1869! It was the first railway of its kind but is now the 2nd steepest in the world, next to Switzerland’s Pilatus Railway. Who knew? We were pleasantly surprised to stumble on this adventure in New Hampshire which seemed like it was going to be a pretty boring state comparatively.

The start of the 3 mile track. We had no idea how much the weather would actually change but it was 47 degrees and raining at the bottom.

It’s a whole lotta up. We started at 2700 ft elevation and would end at 6288 ft.

Everything is so green and lush at the bottom. Also, we still look warm here.

Our guide Scott liked to keep the door open as we ascended. He is a brakeman and tour guide. The brakemen stand on the ascending or descending end of the train car for every trip to watch for issues on the tracks. He kept the door open for WAY too long and it was actually very cold in the train and we were in row #1. (Kristi did this purposely so we’d be in the front on the way up and the back on the way down – not ever thinking any kind of door would be left open!)

One of the switches where a downward facing train had to wait for us to pass

Jerry got this pic of the cog system on the train going down next to us. The cog wheel grabs onto the rungs of the rack to pull it up or down the mountain.

Each train car had beautiful designs inside and on the ceilings. They make all their trains and do all their own repairs on site at their shop.

The mountaintop is not visible. We knew the weather would worsen but did not know to what extent

Approaching the steepest part of the track at a 37% grade

The snow started when we were just above the tree line

Ice on the bushes

Approaching whiteout

Snow and ice accumulating on the tracks

The weather report at the summit

Nice and warm inside the summit station. This unusual mountain has the convergence of 3 major storm tracks at the summit and this accounts for rapidly changing weather. The strongest wind ever recorded in the world was on this mountain in 1934 – recorded at 231 mph.

Taking a quick walk outside to find the summit sign and look off the observation deck – the wind was very shocking and snow was pelting us in the face

The summit station and actual summit just behind Kristi

Kristi asking Jerry a question

Back safely down to the base station and trying to decide if we should buy this