From Our Editors
Stearns Coal & Lumber Company, which controlled more than 200 square miles of land in Kentucky and Tennessee, built the K&T Railway to navigate and export its vast mountain resources. Now owned by a nonprofit organization, the K&T Railway still chugs along the same scenic pathways, importing sightseers and history buffs to glimpse the area's coal, lumber, and railroading past. Trips down into the gorge of the Big South Fork River drop almost 600 feet of elevation in 5 miles, with the train's sturdy engine conquering the steep mountain descent and ascent. In addition to traditional trips, the railway also offers specialty excursions that include hiking trips, twilight Halloween-themed rides, and a Santa Express fueled by the burning presents of disobedient children.