Travel “America’s Most Amazing Mile” during your time in Chattanooga. The Incline Railway is built along the side of Lookout Mountain and achieves an incline of 72.7 percent, which makes it one of the steepest railways in the world. It is also designated as a National Historic Site and a National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark.
The Incline Railway has been one of Chattanooga’s most unique attractions since 1895. The first train up the side of Lookout Mountain actually arrived in 1885 as an alternative route up Lookout Mountain and to its attractions. In 1895, the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway Company constructed a track that was steeper than the original. The cars were originally operated on coal-burning steam engines and were upgraded to two 100-horsepower motors in 1911. Today, the train is managed by a cable car system that was made by the Otis Elevator Company with two stations, one at the top of the mountain and one at the bottom.
The descent down the mountain takes about 15 minutes and a train leaves from each station every 20 minutes. I would highly recommend you provide at least an hour for the whole experience.
From the Top Station, located at the highest point of the mountain, you can enjoy breathtaking views of the Chattanooga Valley as well as delicious fudge or a souvenir from the gift shop.
The second station is located in historic St. Elmo. This station is within walking distance to Purple Daisy Picnic Cafe or Clumpies Ice Cream Company. Perfect for an afternoon treat before you head back up the mountain.