Take a four-hour train adventure through the Hood River Valley that includes an hour layover at the base of Mt. Hood. Travel ... More
Mt. Hood Railroad
Take a four-hour train adventure through the Hood River Valley that includes an hour layover at the base of Mt. Hood. Travel on board historic trains wonderfully restored and even enjoy dinner or brunch on-board.
Reserving the tickets was easy, however they did say to be there by 2:30 for boarding. We arrived at 2:15, and waited around until 5 min to 3. I understand for some that have a tendency to be late - but for those that don't... be assured. You don't board until about 10 min before you leave.
The seating was nice. We purchased tickets in the open air dome car (nothing assigned) and were left to choose from a few tables/booths. The train went much slower than I expected, but the scenery was beautiful. Creeks, orchards, beautiful houses... the sound of the train... all was very relaxing. There was an older gentleman over the intercom explaining the history of the area/railroad that I almost forgot that we were on the Western Train Robbery one. All of the sudden, his explaination of the area around us went into the "Cooper-Spur" gang... that recently just escaped from prison and were on the loose. All of the sudden, out the side of the train you could see the "robbers" firing off guns (blanks) and climbing aboard the train. We started to roll again, when a few of the "robber's" climbed on board and proceeded to rob us of all our "funny money" that we had received at the front desk when we picked up our tickets. There was great interaction, and lots fun for the kids. They even interacted well with all the adults.
During the stop in Parkdale, we were served a lunch (if you so choosed to purchase it with your ticket) pulled pork sandwich, watermelon, cookies, chips, and a soda. The food was good! During the lunch one of the brakemen from the train pulled out a guitar and serenaded all of the visitors with some music. During the lunch the Sheriff showed up and proceeded to 'capture' the robbers and throw them in the old jail (where they could hang out of the bars and get heckled by all the visitors).
We had an hour in Parkdale, which proved to be plenty of time to eat, visit the gift shops/museum, stop at a local pub for a beer, and get back within the 5 min of the train whistle blow.
The ride was just as relaxing on the way back, much quieter (as I think everyone was a bit tuckered out from all the robber excitement). We exited the train afterwards and went back to our hotel.
Good experience. I'm looking into taking my children on the Polar Express Train Ride... I recommend it to anyone - however know what you're getting into first. This was not 5 star dining and an Amtrack... but that's not what I paid to have.
First, the mystery story was led by a loud obnoxious brunette who continuously made hateful comments about blondes. Well my wife is a blonde and she was offended to say the least as I was. There seemed to be some real resentment going on here and I'm appalled that the management would allow this form of hatred in their shows. Besides the rude obnoxious female, the food was mediocre and the ride didn't even take us to the nice areas we had hoped we would see. What was the worst was having to sit through 2 hours of that awful woman yelling at everyone thinking she was being entertaining when I saw several people cringe at the constant yelling and the hateful comments. I'm sorry but this is not entertainment nor is it acceptable. On top of that the woman gave my wife a very menacing look outside as we were leaving. Management needs to address this issue and get rid of hate-mongers like this woman. They are fortunate that we didn't sue them for discrimination. Biggest disappointment and worst mystery theatre experience ever!
My husband and I went on the murder mystery excursion to celebrate our anniversary. We anticipated a nice romantic trip and good food with some quality entertainment.
What we experienced was poor food (my salmon was like cardboard), poor service and the entertainment was all an out raunchy. More along the lines of adult entertainment with very scantily clad ladies dancing in the men's faces and over the top raunchy jokes. My biggest complaint was that there was no indication this was what we were getting ourselves into.
I will never recommend this to anyone and would never go on another trip.
We went to the Murder Mystery dinner train a couple of weeks ago and laughed our butts off! It was fun being on the train and the scenery was beautiful but the food was mediocre , the car was stuffy and the staff was slow and unhelpful. BUT the mystery was fantastic, not that the script was a work of art or anything, but the performances were so good, I was really amazed that such great actors were performing on the train. I loved the lead mob guy and one girl played two characters and was so good I didn't even realize it was the same girl until we got off the train and said goodbye to the actors. She was just fantastic. Every one of the performers gave me at least one good belly laugh. The comedy is a little blue and some of the costumes are sexy but nothing you don't see on prime time network television. I would say its a show for older teens and adults. It is spendy but if you go have a couple cocktails and surrender yourself to the show, it was so much fun!
My husband and I took the Mt. Hood Murder Mystery dinner train on August 1, 2009. The car we were on had no AC. It had to have been about 105 degrees. Very uncomfortable! From talking to the wait staff this happens quite often. It also took 45 minutes for us to 2 drinks. The bar and wait staff were definitely overworked and understaffed. I can think of many other things to do with $80 per person. We contacted customer service and they said there was nothing they could do about it.
My family of 7 went on the Murder Mystery train last weekend. The A/C on the dining car we were on was out and had been out off & on the preceding 3 weeks. It was very hot & stuffy since the windows do not go down. We had to have the door open with the engine right behind our car, very noisy. Nothing was mentioned about the possibility of this when the reservation was made.
The salmon was dry and roast beef was very fatty. On top of the $80 dollars you pay, there is gratuity added on top of that. Out of the $80 you pay, $30 is for the dinner and you pay 20% of that, plus your drinks and gratuity on your drinks. None of this is told you when you make your reservations. And there is a reason you are asked if everyone in your party is over 13. The actors/costumes are pretty raunchy. Definately not for everybody. Beware!
The only redeeming thing about this ride was the scenery. But I definately would not take the 4 hour ride again. Not worth the money, time, or gas. I wish I had read some of the other reviews before I booked this.
My husband and I went on the Mt Hood Railroad trip to Parkdale this past weekend while we were on a day trip to Hood River. It was SO MUCH FUN! We happened to be on one of the Western Robbery tours and the robbers were hysterical. They gave you some fake money when you picked up your tickets and then stole it from you while on the ride. The open air seating car is a must, however they said that they might be retiring the car soon since it's 90 years old. :( We upgraded to the dome car seating - this is a nicely air conditioned car that gives you a good view. I preferred the open air car, myself, but I'm the type to always drive with the windows down too. The staff were extremely friendly and grateful to have customers in these tough economic times. The town of Parkdale is charming and an hour is just the right amount of time there. All in all it was a wonderful experience and we can't wait to try some of their other excursions!
I saw an ad about MHRR on Oregonian early this year. I went to their website and saw some nice photos and stories about the tours they offer. I wanted to take my partner to the tour and and an over-nightg trip in Hood River (Full Sail Brewing Co., etc), and I was planning this trip for several months. The train ride to Parkdale was supposed to be the highlight of the trip, but it turned out to be one of the worse vacation experience of my life. The first 10 min of train ride was nice. The train went along a river, and view was nice. Then, the train stopped all of sudden. We were informed that there was some mechanical problems with locomotive. It took nearly an hour to fix the problem. Once the train started moving again, after 15 min or so, the train stopped again. This time, we waited another 30 min. Once we arrived in Parkdale, we were informed that we could stay there for 15 min. There are 3 or so restaurants and a groccery store in Parkdale. Everyone rushed to the restaurants/grocerry store to grab some food and rushed back to the train (We arrived in Parkdale around 2 pm, and we were all hungry). I was planning a nice picnic, but it was almost like a short restroom stop. I do understand sometimes some mechanical problems occur or unexpected incidents happen, and the mechanical problems and the short stop at Parkdale is not the only reason why I was extremely happy with the train ride. First, the scenery is extremely boring. It's completely different from what you would expect from the brochure and the photos on their website. Most of what you would see is someone's backyard, pear/apple trees, and burnt down/abandoned warehouses. The rail goes through a lot of roads, and they blow horn whenever that happens. It's very noisy. Second, the announcer is awful. During the train ride, a young guy tells stories about some historic buildings and people. He reads off his notes in the dining area. He does not seem to have knowledge or enthusiasm. When the mechanical problems happened, he apologized but almost jokingly and it sounded like he was sarcastic. This upset a lot of passengers. He was like an bad MC on MTV Sprint Break shows. He sounded like less funny version of Dane Cook. Yes, he was that not funny. Third, the train shook too much. I got a major neck pain during and after the train ride. In coclusion, I do not recommend this tour. You should spend your hard-earned money and your time somewhere else. There are a lot of nice restaurants and pubs in town.
I bought tickets for a special Thanksgiving event: a 90 minute train to Parkdale, Oregon with dinner at the Grange hall, time for shopping, and a return to Hood River.
The railbed had washed out weeks before the trip, but the railroad chose to NOT NOTIFY the passengers of the change. The first we knew of any change was when the train reversed short of Parkdale and returned to Hood River. They took us on an unexpected three-hour non-stop round trip to nowhere, then offered us a plate of turkey in their parking lot!
The train was uncomfortable, drafty, and leaky. The management is unscrupulous. The depot smells of urine. Avoid!
We took the dinner theater train, and it was on overall good experience. The seating in the dining cars was very roomy and comfortable, the staff was friendly and accomodating, and the food was excellent. The murder-mystery was funny and the actors really got the audience involved, but they could have wrapped things up a little more quickly. All in all, this was a good experience and I would recommend that others give it a try.
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