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Catskill Mountain Railroad

Catskill Mountain Railroad

Phoenicia, Catskills

In the early-to-mid 19th century visitors typically travelled to the Catskills area via ship on the Hudson River and then on to their ultimate destination, most likely one of the area mountain or boarding houses, via horseback or stage coach. The trips were long and physically tiring. The arrival of railroads changed all that, allowing quicker and easier access to the region while also opening it to the “mass market”.

In 1866, construction began on what was to become known as the Ulster and Delaware (U&D). The U&D followed much of what is today’s Route 28, ultimately connecting Kingston to Oneonta. In 1882, the Stony Clove and Catskill Mountain Railroad was completed, connecting Phoenicia to Hunter, much of it along today’s Route 214. Also in 1882, the Catskill Mountain Railway was completed, connecting the town of Catskill to Palenville.

All three companies are now defunct. However, the spirit of the region’s great railroad era lives on with the Catskill Mountain Railroad, based out of Phoenicia. Operating along a section of what was the Ulster and Delaware line, the tourist-oriented CMRR is a wonderfully scenic photographic opportunity with trains, rails, and depot station all evoking memories of yester-year.