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Hopping Freight Trains In America

4.26  ·  Rating Details ·  62 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
The first complete how-to on riding the rails.See the continent from the inside. Learn how to travel safely on a shoestring. How, when and where to catch a train. By Daffy Littlejohn
Paperback, 353 pages
Published February 1st 1998 by Sand River Press (first published July 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Dec 16, 2009 Kevin rated it it was amazing
One of the only and the most complete how-to on hopping freight trains (I have one other but cannot find it on goodreads). Periodically updated but when I got my copy five years ago even the latest one is several years out of date; this is relevant because merger-mania and cost-cutting have both made the amount of freight trains and rideable cars trend ever lower over the past several decades. Security is also tighter in freight yards since September 11.

I can't say that I have personal experienc
Jackson Radish
Feb 13, 2012 Jackson Radish rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, nonfiction
I love this book! I found it when I was living in a dirty punk house in Portland in a pile of books left behind by someone who probably hadn't lived there for many years. There was nothing particularly interesting in the stack, as they were the books left behind, but this one looked cool so I took it. It was amazing! It's a little bit of train-hopping "how to," a little bit of history of hobo culture, a little bit of the thrill of riding freight trains, a little bit of safety, a little bit of ...more
Ian Colby
Nov 03, 2013 Ian Colby rated it really liked it
Well, it's not a rigorously scientific manual, but it sure as hell is entertaining. Not that I'm about to hop freight trains, but Mr. Littlejohn's thorough run down of how to ride a freight train safely and and adroitly makes me think I could. It's obvious he has vast knowledge and experience with the subject, and he mixes in enough sassiness and jokes to pull you through some of the boring material (how much do I really care about signal switching?) The book's got some typos, weird alignments, ...more
Oct 12, 2008 Alyssa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: trains-and-hobos
Way more detailed than I would have expected, including an overview of both railroad and hobo history. Not detailed in a tedious way, though. From the style of it, I feel like I got all of this information sitting on a bar stool. Not sure how much has changed, especially since 9/11, but this book at least made me feel ready to live my own Sullivan's Travels.
David Gross
Jun 12, 2007 David Gross rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
San Luis Obispo local Duffy Littlejohn has written a terrific handbook for the modern-day hobo. If you’re interested in starting this rewarding and inexpensive hobby, start by reading the good advice and interesting folklore here.
Aug 13, 2010 Jina rated it really liked it
I learned about this book from a swedish guy at a hostel in Panama. He used it to travel around the US, sometimes with disatrous results. A great how-to book written by a character of a guy who gives instruction on travelling by freight train. Is this book legal?
Phil Fernandez
May 28, 2013 Phil Fernandez rated it it was amazing
Very entertaining and informative book. Just the right amount of hobo and railroad history along with everything you need to be an informed rail adventurer or an armchair adventurer. Once I picked it up I couldn't put it down.
Jan 14, 2012 Liz rated it it was amazing
There is nothing like this online for researching train hopping. I was so glad I found a copy. Than you Duffy Littlejohn!
Apr 08, 2010 Skye rated it it was amazing
This book is very well detailed and informative but it does drag on and sometimes it's boring but that's when you can skip ahead.
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