One of our favorite places to travel in the beautiful Fall season is West Virginia where magnificent mountain scenery abounds thru-out this picturesque state. A special way to enjoy it all is by rail, so we’ve included 3 train rides, plus a fun-filled array of other wonderful things in this area. This trip sells out almost every year, so be sure to call soon to ‘get on board’ if you love being gloriously out amongst the Autumn beauty!
DAY ONE: We’ll point our “Leaf-Peeping” coach towards the The Mountain State known as West Virginia, where 80% of the state is forested with over 110,000 sq. mi. of hardwood trees, wind-swept mountains, and photo-perfect valley landscapes. Our destination is a quaint town of around 7,000 called Elkins, and is nestled deep in the Monongahela National Forest. Once listed as one of the “100 Best Small Towns in America”, this community, though small, provides a lot of history and culture found in larger cities. Whether you want to be surrounded with gorgeous views, learn about heritage arts, enjoy some fantastic food, relax with excellent entertainment, or ride the exciting rails, there are options galore awaiting!
** On our way, we’ll stop for a respectful tour at a National Historic Landmark called the Weston State Hospital. Later known as The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, this psychiatric hospital was operated from 1864-1994 by the state of WV – fascinating!
** Popping in at the Appalachian Glass store, you’ll be amazed at the talent displayed at our glass-blowing demonstration and at the beautiful, unique masterpieces they create here.
** Built in 1852, the Philippi Covered Bridge was heavily used by both armies during the Civil War and has been restored to its original appearance, still in use today – enjoy a photo op!
** A delightful tour of the 1870’s stately 23-room Greek Mansion known as Adaland is our next pleasure. This elegant Southern estate is beautifully set against the rolling hills and is where we’ll have our Dinner this evening – Lovely!
** Eventually we’ll check into our home for 3 nights (unpack once!), the Elkins Hampton Inn! (D)
DAY TWO: This beautiful area we’re staying in is lodged between the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east and the Ohio River to the west. The entire state is considered refreshingly “off the beaten path”. Today we’re joined by an excellent local Guide for a day in the Autumn splendor!
** Our first stop is at the WV Railroad Museum & Appalachian Discovery Center located in a historic grain mill – lots to look at and learn about while we’re here, for sure!
** Next, we journey over to the Elkins Depot and hear “All Aboard” the New Tygart Flyer as we revel in a railride to the High Falls of Cheat on a 46-mile round-trip wilderness excursion. This scenic journey features mountain grades, an “S” curve tunnel, a high bridge, and miles of unspoiled mountain views as vintage diesel-powered locomotives climb along the cascading Shavers Fork of the Cheat River to a beautiful 18-ft high waterfall located in one of the most remote and pristine settings in the region. Enjoy a deli lunch on board your climate-controlled passenger coach. A wonderful experience!
** Later, we’ll be visited by a professional living history re-enactor who will regale us with tales of the Era
** Tonight is a real treat as we take our seats at the Gandy Dancer, WV’s only dinner theater, for a yummy meal and Branson-style variety show filled with family-friendly music and comedy. From country to bluegrass, to rock & roll and gospel, there’s something for everyone! They say “We treat you like family”, and they mean it. Our folks love it here! … A wonderful ending to a delightful day of Fabulous Fall Fun! (B, L, D)
DAY THREE: Another lovely drive through the WV foliage starts our day as we travel to Cass Station for a steam engine trip on the Cass Scenic RR. The locomotives are the same Shay engines used in Cass back-in-the-day, and also in the rain forests of British Columbia for more than a half-century. We’ll ride the rails along picturesque Leatherbark Creek on the same line built in 1902 that hauled lumber to the Cass Mill. The train zigzags thru two switchbacks as the engines alternately push-then-pull the passenger cars because the grade is so steep – exciting! At the top is Whittaker Station where an authentic logging camp was recreated by the Mountain State Logging Historical Assoc. – a cool shady picnic grove greets us surrounded by green meadows and views of the countryside, along with a box lunch that’s included on our adventure!
** At this writing, our plan includes a visit to the incredible Green Bank Observatory located in the National Radio Quiet Zone. We’ll enjoy a narrated bus ride thru the gates into the RFI-restricted zone for a close-up look at these humongous telescopes – it is honestly AMAZING!! IF NOT AVAILABLE WE HAVE PLAN “B” READY!
** This evening back at Elkins, a lovely dinner awaits at the majestic Graceland Restaurant poised on the hillside of the beautiful campus of Davis & Elkins College. This Victorian mansion still retains many original features from 1893, and boasts a 20-mile view of the scenic mountains.
** Afterwards, we return to the Gandy Dancer for a 2nd show, completely different than before and still wonderful in every way! (B, BxL, D)
DAY FOUR: More Adventure Ahead! So much scenic beauty as we depart for Durbin where a vintage experience on one of the rarest steam locomotives in existence awaits. The Durbin Rocket #6 provides a ride in an authentic 1920-era coach with an iconic wooden caboose. Hear her puff & whistle her way along the winding Greenbrier River in northern Pocahontas County on our nearly 2-hr. round-trip amidst the Monongahela National Forest with beautiful river and mountain views. Lunch is included back in Durbin
* Seneca Rocks is one of the best-known landmarks in WV, a magnificent formation rising nearly 900 ft above the North Fork River. The Discovery Center provides an open view of the rocks and a unique Gift Shop!
** Alas, it will finally be time to drink in our last panoramas of mountain beauty as we begin our return trip home, refreshed and relaxed from 4 days of true “Mountain Magic”! (B, L)
Includes: Deluxe motorcoach travel, lodging, activities as listed, luggage handling & taxes 3B 2BxL 3D
$1,095 per/person, double occupancy
$1,035 p/p, triple occupancy
$995 p/p, quad occupancy
$1,355 single occipancy
Please note: The following are TLC's general polices and procedures that cover all of our tours, so some of these may or may not be applicable to this particular tour.
On all overnight tours, we use a daily seat rotation. The first day of a trip, you choose your seat when you board, and rotate from there. We feel this is fair to all. If the coach is not full, a less formal rotation may be used at the Escort’s discretion. Persons traveling single or with uneven amounts in their group may need to sit with other like-travelers. We cannot guarantee that small groups will be seated together. We welcome single travelers, but the single rate does not include two seats on the coach. * We cannot accept doctor’s notes regarding requests to sit in the front seat/s. Please consider boarding at the first pickup location if your seat location is of concern. It is also recommended to see your doctor for motion sickness medication, if this should apply.
We make regular stops for restrooms and for the convenience of smokers; however, we have a NO SMOKING policy aboard all coaches. If someone violates the non-smoking policies of places we are staying or visiting while on tour, it is the sole responsibility of that person should there be any penalties and/or fines for not adhering to their rules and regulations. Consumption of alcoholic beverages is not permitted at any time on the coach.
All of our tours use beautiful modern, deluxe wide-body motorcoaches from Campbell Bus Lines. Campbell has received the highest possible rating with the Dept. of Transportation. The motorcoaches are equipped with air-conditioning, reclining seats, public address system, DVD player, outlets for each passenger, and emergency restrooms. Our intent is for all overnight tours to be professionally escorted. Upon occasion, in order to avoid canceling a trip with a low passenger count, our Driver may serve both positions of Driver and Escort, and all are professionally trained to do so. ~ Also, on air trips with low passenger counts, we will not be able to provide an Escort from our company. However, once you arrive at your destination, a guide from our connecting company will be with you throughout the entire tour.
Your lodging is included on all overnight tours. All hotels are AAA rated. We never use second rate hotels, restaurants, or activities on any tour, to the best of our ability to make that determination. If you need two beds in your room, please state this when making your reservation. Generally, some meals are included on overnight trips (see individual tour inclusions); however, we cannot guarantee any special dietary requirements.
As of June 2009, a Passport or Passport Card is required for border crossings. Either of these travel documents may be obtained through your local court house. The Passport Card is limited, but is sufficient for Canadian border crossings and is good for 10 years – it is also very easy to apply for. Your Driver and/or Escort will be asking to see one of these documents before boarding the coach for trips with this requirement. We cannot be responsible if you are unable to travel due to failure on your part to obtain the proper documentation. Please begin the process early enough to ensure that you will have it in time for your tour’s departure. Click here for for more information.
One suitcase per person is included in the price of your tour. You are also permitted a carry-on, which is your responsibility. Additional luggage may be transported at the cost of $8.00 per bag, per day. It is wise to travel light. Luggage tags are provided and required for hotel identification, and are sent with the final letter and phone numbers of your hotels.
All taxes and gratuities for included meals and activities are included, unless otherwise mentioned by the Escort. Driver and Escort gratuities are not included in the price of your tour. The suggested rate for a “job well done” is a minimum of $3.50-$4.00 per person/ per day for the Tour Escort, and a minimum of $3.50-$4.00 per person/per day for the Driver. We request that you express this on an individual basis, and let the quality of service received be your guide.
All prices listed are per/person rates. On one day tours, full payment must be made with the reservation. For overnight tours, see “How To Make A Reservation”. Balance of an overnight tour is due 45 days prior to departure (unless otherwise stated/notified). Confirmation will be sent after we receive your deposit. Please call as soon as possible if you should decide not to go.
Up to 45 days prior to departure date, a full refund will be made. *Air and cruise tours, and some longer tours, may be different—be sure to ask for details when making your reservation. Tours including tickets also generally have earlier non-refundable dates. There are no refunds for cancellations made within 45 days prior to your departure date. However, we will do our best to recover as much as we can, but cannot guarantee anything including prepaid reservations and other costs that are non-refundable to us. There will be a $25.00 per/person charge for this service. There will be no refund, for any reason, for a “no-show” on the day of the tour.
Please Note: Refunds will be made by the same method you paid us; e.g., if you paid by credit card, the refund will be put back on that credit card. No exceptions.
TLC Tours offers a “Refund Protection Plan” for overnight tours that is available at our office at a minimal cost. It needs to be purchased when you book your trip. This insures you a full refund in case of:
Call our office for full details about TLC’s RPP. We encourage you to take advantage of the protection plan, or secure insurance on your own. Our Refund Protection Plan is not available for Day Trips, nor are there any refunds for Day Trips, with a few exceptions.
TLC Tours reserves the right to cancel any tour that has not reached a minimum number of reservations. We always avoid changes and cancellations if at all possible, as we realize the inconvenience to you, our valued customer. We reserve the right to cancel or refuse service to anyone, in our sole discretion. Any person may be dismissed from a tour at any time by the Tour Escort or Driver should their conduct be problematic in any way. No refund will be made, nor will any further responsibility be assumed by TLC Tours or anyone in their employment.
TLC Tours, LLC is insured. Campbell Bus Lines is registered and insured with the ICC. TLC Tours acts only as an agent. We are not responsible to any person for any loss of time or money due to a change or delay beyond our control. Nor are we responsible for non-performance by those we have contracted with. We reserve the right to change tour prices, inclusions, and itinerary, if so dictated by circumstances beyond our control. We are not responsible for pricing, typographical, or other errors. Any claims against TLC Tours must be made, in writing within 30 days of the trip.
Special Note Regarding TLC’S Covid 19 Procedures
As you well-know, the travel industry was one of the hardest hit industries as a result of the pandemic. While we are excited and ready to resume SAFE travel adventures together, at this writing we need to require a few protocols so that everyone is protected as much as possible and feels the needed level of safety and security when on one of our tours. We realize this is a controversial subject but are choosing to “Do Unto Others As You Would Have Others Do Unto You”, and conducting our tours so that EVERYONE can feel as safe as possible. Our decision to proceed with our tours in general is based on the fact that ‘if we have to wear a mask more than we’d like, it is definitely worth it’ to be able to be out-and-about and finally enjoying our love of travel again! However, if what we are asking is against your personal beliefs, hang on to this book for later use — we hope we may be able to lift these requirements, or at least most of these, later in the year if things improve as anticipated. So please know that what is listed may change and/or be updated as the country continues to rebound, and the virus is controlled. Prayers!
But for now, we will need to ask that everyone going on one of our tours agrees to abide to the following procedures at all times, i.e., throughout the entire tour. Please read them carefully to be sure you’re willing to carry them out. If any of these requirements should be revised throughout the year, we will inform you of the changes in our pre-trip letter which you will receive before your tour departs, or you can always call the office to check.
One other important note we must mention. At the time of this book’s publication, some of the places we intend to visit are not yet fully open – although all of the ones we have scheduled believe they will be by the time our tour is to arrive. Should there be some place that was not able to take us, we will do our very best to substitute an activity or attraction of an equal quality, or possibly cancel the tour if need-be. We just have to “go with the flow” this year, but trust me, every single place we plan to journey to WANTS to be open for us, and will be doing everything they can to do so. Adventure ahead!
Thank you so much for your understanding. We are ALL trying to find our way through this crazy time in our country’s history and are forced to make decisions that are very hard… especially when we know some of our wonderful, valued customers may not be in agreement with all of them. We appreciate your faithful cooperation – You are truly “The Best”! ~ Here are our TLC Pandemic Procedures:
A. If you have recently had Covid-19, we ask that you not travel with us until the advised quarantine period has transpired. Please check with your Doctor or Hospital to be accurately updated on what that time frame currently is.
B. We ask that you take your own temperature before leaving home on the morning of Day One, and if you show any fever at all, please stay home. If you have additional/other symptoms that suggest Covid-19, we ask that you please stay home. If you have been around someone with Covid-19, or highly-suspected Covid-19, we ask that you please follow the CDC guidelines according to their timeline, and possibly stay home. Any of these methods are somewhat dependent on the “honor system”. We trust that our upstanding TLC customers will “do the right thing” and not put anyone else at risk for contracting Covid on a TLC tour.
C. Bring and wear a mask or face covering over both your mouth and nose at all times on the coach. Please have it on when you meet the bus and give your suitcase to our Driver, each time you use the steps onto the coach, and at all times while on the coach itself. Once you are off the coach and away from other passengers, it is fine to take it off unless the particular place we are going has their own requirements, and then you are agreeing to following their particular protocols, whether we personally agree or not. The protocols for Ohio and PA are not necessarily the same ones that are being enforced in other states and can change week-to-week in some cases, so as mentioned previously, we are just going to have to be ready to “go with the flow” and do whatever we need to so that we can enjoy our time there. We can do it, TLC Family!!
D. Should someone come down with Covid during or after their tour, we assume no responsibility or liability. We cannot control every minute of everyone’s day, nor can we control how people handle themselves when off the coach. We have done our very best to secure accommodations and venues that state the highest sanitation protocols to the best of their ability. If on tour you should come down with Covid-19, or strongly suspect it, you would be responsible to quarantine yourself and arrange for transportation home when appropriate. — By traveling with us, you are agreeing that TLC Tours, LLC will not be held responsible for contracting Covid-19, nor liable for any expenses involved in any way.
E. If you do need to cancel at the last-minute because of having covid, being exposed to covid, or suspecting a possible case of covid, our normal cancellation policies apply, just as they would to any other last-minute illness that prevents you from going on a tour. See General Information/Refunds under policy and procedures. Without insurance, there is no refund except what we might be able to get back from individual vendors in your behalf. We highly suggest taking out either our in-house Refund Protection Policy, or another more comprehensive insurance plan of your own choosing. Thank you for understanding.
F. Overall, we will continue using the same covid regulations as are being asked of us: Wear a mask when you can’t be 6-ft. apart, wash your hands with soap often / use sanitizer, stay extra-far apart when you are off the coach and not wearing your mask. And lovingly respect the concerns of others – some may have health conditions that cause them to be more cautious than you may feel is necessary for yourself. ~ Again, we believe these things are a very small price to pay in order to be “On the Road Again’!
TLC SANITIZING PROTOCOLS
We assure you that TLC TOURS is ready to serve all your travels with us as safely and thoroughly as possible.
Bus Cleaning – Disinfecting Policy
Prior to March 1, 2020 Campbell Bus Lines was dedicated to the complete and effective cleaning of our vehicles in preparation for passengers to board and travel to the destination of their choice in comfort and quality. Following the outbreak of Covid-19, we became aware that we needed to go even further above the level of cleaning that we had already been using for over 50 years.
1.) We have hired an or outside firm to completely disinfect our buses when they finish a trip. You can be assured that every Campbell Coach that arrives to pick you up has been thoroughly disinfected.
2.) We have upgraded all air filters and increased the frequency that we change the air filters on the coach to reduce contamination. Our motor coaches refresh the air on the coach every five minutes, and combined with the upgraded filters, will reduce stale used air in the coach.
3.) We have added UV lights in our HVAC system to eliminate any airborne pathogens.
4.) Every coach will be disinfected prior to starting your trip, and every day while on your trip. We are using an environmentally friendly solution that is EPA-approved, and not diluted or mixed at our facilities. The solution is rated on the EPA K-List that supersedes the current EPA suggestion for elimination of Corona Virus. You can rest assured that the solution has no harmful properties and has received the Green Seal certification. We apply the solution with electrostatic sprayers to increase coverage to eliminate all pathogens on hard surfaces.
5.) We will have disinfecting wipes available for the Driver and/or Escort to wipe the high touch points while on the trip, and hand sanitizer will be on board for your use.
Our departure points are as follows
Alliance: (NEW) the front parking area of Lowe’s, 2595 W. State St.
Other departure points may be established for groups of 10 or more if the itinerary and direction of travel permits. We reserve the right to change departures. Departures are arranged in the direction of travel, with last departure being the closest to the destination, for the convenience of all passengers.
*We may use smaller shuttle buses to make these pickups and will join the tour en route at a logical transfer point.
For Overnight Trips:
For TLC DAY TRIPS:
For day trips, we do not have any insurance or Refund Protection Plan available. Payment must be made in full when booking a day trip, and if you cancel your reservation up to 45 days prior to the trip’s date, you will receive a full refund. *Occasionally a day trip may have a different cancellation date other than 45 days out – it is good to inquire when making your reservation. — If TLC should need to cancel the entire day trip, you will receive a refund.
For TLC OVERNIGHT MOTORCOACH TOURS:
For most overnight tours, a full refund will be made up to 45 days prior to departure date. However, some of our tours, especially the longer ones, may have a 60-day cancellation date. The specific date will be listed on your confirmation which you will receive in the mail once you make your reservation. Tours including tickets may have earlier non-refundable dates – please inquire when making a reservation for a tour that includes tickets. There are no refunds for cancellations made within the 45 (or 60) days prior to your departure date. However, we will do our best to recover as much as we can, but cannot guarantee anything including prepaid reservations and other costs that are non-refundable to us. There will be a $25.00 per/person charge for this service. There will be no refund, for any reason, for a “no-show” on the day of the tour.
** Please Note: Refunds will be made by the same method you paid us; e.g., if you paid by credit card, the refund will be put back on that credit card. No exceptions.
TLC’s REFUND PROTECTION PLAN for Overnight Motorcoach Tours:
TLC has an in-house “Refund Protection Plan” which we offer for overnight motorcoach tours through our office at a minimal cost. It needs to be purchased when you book your trip. This insures you a full refund in case of:
The RPP covers you up to the morning of departure; however, you must call your Escort (number will be provided) that morning before your pick-up time in order for the RPP to be valid. She will need to call all the places the tour is going to change the passenger counts. Failure to call the Escort that morning cancels your RPP coverage.
Feel free to call our office for full details about TLC’s RPP. We encourage you to take advantage of the protection plan, or secure more comprehensive insurance on your own, if desired.
TLC “FLY TRIPS”:
For any of our tours that involve flying, the connecting companies we use for our air tours offer their own insurance plans and instructions. You will find that information listed on each tour’s page and/or flyer near the respective pricing and other pertinent details. It is up to you, of course, whether or not you choose to take insurance out, but it is highly recommended.
PLEASE NOTE: Sometimes excellent trips with super itineraries are canceled when people wait ’til the last minute to put in their reservation. OUR monies are usually due at least 90 days ahead on “fly trips” and at least 45 days ahead on regular trips. If we don’t have enough signed up at that time, we have no choice but to cancel it. Then when you call later, it’s already too late… and disappointing for us all! Please help us and CALL EARLY – Thank you so much.