Our History

About Us

The Adirondack Railway Preservation Society (ARPS), a nonprofit organization, operates the Adirondack Scenic Railroad, a former New York Central line located in upstate New York and the Adirondack region. Since 1992, we have built a successful tourist attraction, operating on track owned by the State of New York. In 1996, the State pledged to restore the track, allowing for rail operations between the mainline in Utica and the world-class destination of Lake Placid. The State has only partially restored the track which has, in turn, created a contentious rail vs. trail debate.

Since our inception, ARPS has worked to preserve the state-owned Corridor. We cut brush, inspect track, maintain switches and control the beaver activity throughout the Corridor. We have helped to preserve the stations in Thendara and Saranac Lake as working pieces of railroad history. As part of our mission to create a multi-use recreational Corridor, we have worked with other businesses to provide our passengers with the opportunity to hike, bike and float through parts of the Adirondack Park that are seldom seen by the casual visitor.

The Adirondack Railway Preservation Society is a volunteer-based organization. Together with our staff, volunteers have donated approximately 300,000 hours to protect our historic railway and enrich the Adirondack experience for tourists and residents of our region. They have helped this railroad to grow from a four-mile excursion in the Old Forge area to a business that carried over 74,000 passengers annually on hundreds of trains in Utica, Thendara, Saranac Lake and Lake Placid. Our total ridership has surpassed 1,500,000 people.

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