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Silver Comet Trail - Floyd Rd access - Marietta, GA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Lat34North
N 33° 50.806 W 084° 35.181
16S E 723320 N 3747786
Quick Description: This access point is located where the Silver Comet Trail cross Floyd Rd. The Silver Comet Depot (bicycle store) is located here.
Location: Georgia, United States
Date Posted: 4/9/2010 11:07:45 AM
Waymark Code: WM8JBM
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Team GeoDuo
Views: 7

Long Description:
The Silver Comet Trail is a multi-use path for bicycling, running, walking, and skating near Atlanta, Georgia. The Silver Comet Trail is a 61.5 mile, 12 feet wide, car-free concrete path that connects the Smyrna, Georgia (NW of Atlanta) to the Chief Ladiga trail at the Georgia-Alabama state line. There are multiple access points to the trail, including many with parking, restrooms and picnic areas – refer to the map for details. The trail traces the route of the “Silver Comet” passenger train line that operated from 1947 to 1969. Passenger service discontinued in 1969 and the line was used for freight until abandoned by CSX in 1989. The Georgia DOT purchased the land in 1992, construction on the trail began in 1998 and the rail-to-trail conversion was completed in 2008. Together with the Chief Ladiga trail, which meets the Silver Comet at the state line, the Silver Comet forms a 96 mile path – the longest paved multi-use trail in the United States.

At the Georgia / Alabama state line, the Silver Comet will connect to the 33-mile long Chief Ladiga Trail that ends in Anniston, Alabama. When construction on the Silver Comet and Chief Ladiga is finished, the trails will join to form one continuous trail from Smyrna, Georgia to Anniston, Alabama. The Silver Comet and Chief Ladiga Trails will connect in 2002.

Both the Silver Comet and Chief Ladiga are converted rail-trails built on abandoned railroad lines.


In addition to serving Florida, the Seaboard Air Line Railroad competed with the Southern Railway with service to Atlanta, Georgia and Birmingham, Alabama. The Silver Comet was introduced in 1947 to compete directly with Southern's streamliners, complete with Observation car. It was quickly downgraded by the mid-1950's to a very ordinary streamliner, losing both Observation and sleeper-lounge cars which went to the newly-upgrade Silver Star. Tavern service was provided by the Silver Meteor's old 1939/1940 Tavern-Coaches and the dining cars only operated as far was Washington, DC.

Both Southern and Seaboard served New York, Philadelphia and Washington via the Pennsylvania RR, but Seaboard's Silver Comet also served Richmond, VA, Raleigh, NC directly and Norfolk, VA (as far as Portsmouth, VA across the river from Norfolk) via a section, operated as the Tidewater from Raleigh No 17 northbound, and as a section of the Silver Comet/Sunland No. 18 southbound, with a diner between Raleigh and Portsmouth.

The Tidewater also fielded through cars from Jacksonville to Portsmouth, VA, operating by itself from Jacksonville trailing behind the Silver Star (and later combined with the Star by 1966). Southbound out of Portsmouth, VA, No. 18 carried both the Atlanta and Jacksonville through cars as far as Raleigh. The Silver Comet carried the Jacksonville cars as far as Hamlet, NC where the secondary train, the Sunland, took over for the overnight run to Jacksonville, with no food service. The Atlanta-Portsmouth sleeping car was discontinued by 1966, leaving only a through Atlanta-Portsmouth unreserved coach.

The Silver Comet was a direct competitor with Southern Railway's Southerner. For example, a typical schedule (effective December 15, 1964): The Comet departed New York at 11:00 am, Washington at 3:20 PM, Raleigh at 9:10 pm It picked up the cars from Portsmouth, VA, Train No. 17, departing there at 4:15 PM and arriving Raleigh at 8:30pm where the dining car from Portsmouth was dropped. At Hamlet, the Sunland's through coach and sleeper to Jacksonville was removed and the Silver Comet continued on to Atlanta arriving at 6:45 am the next day and Birmingham, Alabama at 9:50 am.

Returning from Birmingham departing at 1:35 PM, Atlanta at 6:40pm arriving Hamlet, NC at 1:40 am, the Comet picked up the the Tidewater's through coach and sleeper from Jacksonville, running as the combined Silver Comet / Tidewater Train No. 34 / 18 as far as Raleigh, where the Tidewater, No. 18 continued to Portsmouth, VA arriving at 8:30 am, with the Comet's cars from Atlanta and the cars from Jacksonville, picking up a dining car at Raleigh at 4:15 am. The Silver Comet continued on to Richmond at 7:05 am, where the Tidewater's sleeper from Jacksonville was dropped, and on to Washington at 10:05 am and arriving New York by 2:05 PM

Under the Seaboard Coast Line, the Silver Comet was further downgraded, losing both the diner and through service to Portsmouth, VA, becoming an Atlanta-Washington DC train by 1969. It was discontinued altogether by the end of 1969.

Source Silver Comet web site
Country: USA

State/Province/etc.: GA

Trail Start (town): Mavell Road in Smyrna, GA

Trail Finish (town): Georgia-Alabama state line

Trail Length: 61

Trail Surface: Paved

Pack Animals Allowed: no

Fees: no

Internet Link(s):

Rail-to-Trail Sign: Not listed

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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
zentria visited Silver Comet Trail - Floyd Rd access - Marietta, GA 8/16/2010 zentria visited it
Lat34North visited Silver Comet Trail - Floyd Rd access - Marietta, GA 3/24/2010 Lat34North visited it

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