3168 Base Station Road, (6 mi from Rt 302 and Bretton Woods), Bretton Woods, NH 03589
For more than 150 years, the Mount Washington Cog Railway has been thrilling passengers from all over the world with its dramatic ascent to the summit of the highest peak in the Northeast. Located in the heart of the majestic White Mountains region of northern New Hampshire, Marshfield Base Station is just 6 miles east of another New Hampshire icon, the Omni Mount Washington Hotel.
The Cog is the first mountain-climbing cog railway in the world, and the only one currently operating in North America. With an average grade of 25% (some sections approach nearly 38%), it’s also the second steepest in the world! Motive power is provided by a fleet of powerful biodiesel locomotives, each custom designed, built and maintained on site. And with a nod to its steam heritage, the railway also continues to operate a pair of century-old, coal-fired steam engines.
At the summit, clear weather provides spectacular panoramic views from Quebec to the Atlantic Ocean. Passengers may also experience a taste of the “world’s worst weather”– it can snow on the summit even in summer. Conditions at the top can be quite a bit different than those at the base station, so bring a jacket! The summit is home to the Mount Washington Weather Observatory, one of the world’s most important weather laboratories.
Trains lay over at the summit for approximately one hour, plenty of time to explore the Sherman Adams Visitor Center and its rooftop observation deck, Extreme Mount Washington (an interactive weather exhibit), a cafeteria, and two gift shops. Adjacent to the visitor center is the historic Tip Top house, an original summit hotel dating back to 1853. Now a museum, it is believed to be the oldest existing mountain top hostelry in the world.
Back at Marshfield Base Station, learn much more about The Cog’s fascinating history and technology at the interactive Cog Railway Museum. Grab a light lunch, a snack or a drink in our cafeteria. In our Gift Shop, visitors can browse a wide selection of Cog gear and apparel along with a selection of local and regional items.
Beginning in 2020, The Cog is a year-round attraction! In the winter when the summit is inaccessible, trains will run up to Waumbek Station at just under 4000’. During a brief layover, passengers enjoy spectacular snowy views to the north and west, comfortable warning huts and a firepit, and complimentary hot refreshments. Round trips to Waumbek are approximately 1 hour, at reduced fares. Our facilities are open all winter long and serve as an excellent base camp for skiers, snowboarders, hikers and snowmobilers (parking/land use fees apply).