The Alaska Railroad offers a Holiday Train each December. I understand they've been doing this for years, though like most things of this sort, I had no idea until I was chasing around my own preschooler. I was told it's pricey, sells out quickly, and is a blast. All of that is completely correct.
Henry had been doing very well in school and there is no denying how bananas he is about trains, so this was an excellent event for us. Becky and Piper took a pass, but will certainly be around in the coming years.
They offered a morning train and an afternoon train. We chose the morning one as it didn't collide directly with nap time. The picture below was taken just before departure. Yes, 10 am in December is almost sunrise!
The train rumbled along Turnagain Arm, stopping to watch Dall Sheep along the way. We finally ground to a halt in the speck of a town called Indian.
Henry wanted to know what happened, so I gave him an answer. "The engine ran out of gas."
"Will a tanker be coming to fill it up?"
We soon lurched back towards Anchorage and Henry resumed gazing intently towards the ocean, mountains, and highway.
Kids all over the train had shades of meltdowns at different times. Not Hank. He requested a snack now and again, but largely spent his time quietly absorbing it all. He didn't even touch the coloring book they handed out.
Full set of photos here.