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“Making lemonade from lemons”

Pioneer Tunnel Coal Mine & Steam Train
Ranked #1 of 5 things to do in Ashland
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Tour Pennsylvania's mining history at these mines.
Reviewed 26 August 2017 via mobile

I've been on a few different mine tours around the world, this was my first visit to a coal mine and I think my favorite so far. We learned a lot (myself and three children from teen to seven). We enjoyed the ride into the mine not knowing what to expect and felt a tad nervous. The tour guide was great and threw some humor in his talk. As fascinating as it was, we were grateful to see sunlight again and felt a sense of appreciation for the miners and all they did and how it really changed our nation-and the world! Don't stop with the mine, make sure to warm up on the train ride as well. The engine was fascinating and the scenery was beautiful as we traveled the rails into mining history of Pennsylvania. Our guide here was also fantastic and very informative. I think what made this experience different from other mine tours was the personal connection our hosts have to the mining industry. Mining is a very hard life with an unsure future and that was felt on both tours. I'm glad the area made lemonade from lemons by opening up the tours. Go and enjoy some of the nicest, proudest yet most humble people of America!

1  Thank LaNon N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"bring a jacket"
in 27 reviews
"train ride"
in 59 reviews
"coal mine"
in 102 reviews
"gift shop"
in 24 reviews
"tour guide"
in 17 reviews
"hard life"
in 4 reviews
"back in the day"
in 5 reviews
"combo ticket"
in 3 reviews
"walk around"
in 7 reviews
"great tour"
in 9 reviews
"knoebels amusement park"
in 3 reviews
"learn how"
in 3 reviews
"strip mining"
in 6 reviews
"anthracite museum"
in 4 reviews
in 54 reviews
in 19 reviews
in 17 reviews

19 - 23 of 213 reviews

Reviewed 19 August 2017

It was a fun way to spend the day. We were lucky and it was the town's 25th anniversary so there were vendors all around. The train ride is short and bumpy but you wait at the top of the hill where there is a very informative guide to tell you of their history. The mine ride is chilly, only about 45 degrees so a jacket might be needed. Also a very informative experience.

Thank plfcowgirlval
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2017 via mobile

If you're in the area this place is worth the visit. You take a (very bumpy!) ride into the mine. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and answered everyone's questions. Our family really enjoyed the time we spent in the mine. I've never been to anything quite like this and it's definitely worth a visit.

The playground is very nice and the bathroom (women's) was clean. The gift shop had some nice inexpensive items. We did not use the snack bar but it looked good.

Some things to know and the reason this isn't a five star review:
-They will pack you into the mine carts like sardines. I don't know if this was just our particular tour (weekday 10:30am tour in early August) or a common occurrence but it was very crowded on the mine tour. We were asked to squeeze in and told repeatedly it's just a short ride. It does not feel like a short ride when you're squished against a stranger with body odor.

-you may get wet. It had rained heavily the day before and there was a lot of dripping going on. Not a big deal, just wish I'd known to bring our ponchos. Halfway through the ride down they stop to show you something and I was stuck right under a steady drip. Because it was so crowded I couldn't avoid getting soaked.

-if your tour is large you will miss stuff. You walk to 5 or 6 points in the mine and the guide talks about stuff. When we were close to the front it was easy to hear our guide and see the things he was pointing out. When we walked to the next area we ended up near the back and couldn't see what he was talking about. He used his headlamp a lot to point things out but that only helps the people who are close enough to see. By the time we got up to see it, he (and his headlamp) had moved on. Picture 40 people trying to look into your unlit hallway closet at the same time.

-the ride is very bumpy. There is one seat on each cart that is not padded because it's also the gate to the cart. Do NOT sit there. The lack of padding made the ride even worse.

Thank AlisonsD4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2017 via mobile

Family of 6 ,including 2 young and 2 teens. We did the combo of train and mine tour to save money. The rides are VERY bumpy..just be aware of that in case you have back or other issues. The guides on both tours were extremely informative and well spoken. The information was very educational and even our 7 year old learned a lot. We enjoyed getting out on the mine ride and seeing everything close up. Might want to make sure you have a sweater or jacket. It was super cold in the mine. We have a whole new repect for those before us that worked in this area. Thank goodness for progress. Would definitely recommend this.

Thank enrichmentacademy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 August 2017

Good Mine Tour - the Guide was funny and told just enough details about the mine. I had previously gone on another coal mine tour further north in Pa. where you had to seemingly go down a lot deeper for the tour - I liked this Pioneer Tunnel Mine Tour better because it didn't seem as oppressive(all the weight above) down in this mine. I recommend a jacket, long pants and a hat for the drips. Also - as a fan of steam trains - I really enjoyed the short ride on the coal powered steam train that they have there on site - it takes you out back to an abandoned strip mine and they give you a little talk about that operation.

Thank Erich B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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