People that like abandoned places and the history that goes with them will appreciate the abandoned ghost trains of Maine. They’re deep in the north woods and are not exactly easy to get to, but the ride itself is part of the journey.
Ghost Trains in Maine?
Looking for the ghost trains of Maine? We’re here to help.
There aren’t many places where you can be miles away from civilization and come upon abandoned steam locomotives, but deep in the North Woods of Maine, near Eagle Lake, you can find them… if you know how to get there. (We’ll give you directions.)
Abandoned places are fun to explore for the post-apocalyptic prepper. There’s something about visiting these places, whether it’s the extreme of touring Chernobyl’s exclusion zone or just peering inside an abandoned building. These places are simultaneously a step back in time – and a step forward. We get a glimpse as to what our post-apocalyptic future might look like. (They’re also great sites for photography.)
Maine has a variety of abandoned places. There are vacant paper mills, old forts, deserted farmhouses, and even underground bunkers. If you’re looking for something a bit more interesting, however, you can to take a long drive into paper company land to the abandoned… ghost trains.
Though it is now just a collection of rusty parts strewn through a remote forest, the Eagle Lake Tramway is one of the most fascinating examples of Maine ingenuity. Devised more than a century ago to transport logs from one lake to another, this steam-powered mechanical system is remarkable testimony to old-fashioned know-how and a willingness to take on any problem.
We went this past fall, and we made a video of the trip that you can watch here:
If you want to make the trip on your own, we also made a downloadable .pdf with detailed directions to help you find the way.
There are some words of caution before you make your spooky trip to the ghost trains in Maine.
- First – If you use our directions, you use them at your own risk. Make sure you are prepared. This is not a typical drive.
- Second – You’ll be driving on miles upon miles of dirt logging roads. The broken shale on the roads has been known to slash through tires. Getting a flat tire is not uncommon.
- Third – You will be going into remote wilderness where few people travel. Moose and deer walk these roads, so watch out.
- Fourth – There are hardly any road signs to direct you, so don’t expect to see many. There is no cellphone reception, either.
There are some things you’ll want to bring along – for safety’s sake. Following are my recommendations:
- Maine DeLorme Atlas – It won’t be of the best help once you’re in the North Woods, but it won’t hurt, either. All of the pages are topographical maps which can help you orient if you’re lost.
- Compass – This can be used with the topographical maps in the atlas above – should the unexpected happen.
- Handheld GPS – A GPS will help you know where you are. It can track your trip. Our downloadable directions also include coordinates.
- First Aid Kit – This can’t be understated.
- Extra Gas – There are no gas stations nearby. If you go off course, having extra gas on hand will bring peace of mind.
- Tire Repair Kit – I once went on a trip to the North Woods where a friend got a flat and had to replace the tire, got another flat and used my repair kit, then got a third flat and had to use duct tape and glue to fill the hole (it worked!).
- Small Air Compressor – A flat tire won’t fill itself.
- Jumper Cables – You don’t want to find out your battery died three hours away from civilization.
- Emergency Survival Food – This stuff lasts forever, so you can pack it and forget it. Make sure you have a hiking stove to go with it.
- Water – Bring enough drinking water for everyone in your party and/or a means to purify water. Bring extra water if you plan to cook some of that emergency survival food.
Beyond that, download our directions, watch the video, allow yourself plenty of time for the trip, and tell someone where you’re going!
Have you been to the ghost trains or other abandoned places? We’d love to hear about it in the comments.