Mexican artists ride abandoned passenger rails in an Earthbound "spacecraft"



To boldly go where no train has gone recently.

I love this story, thanks! It reminds me a little of the vehicle from the old Saturday morning kids show Ark II.

I’ve seen railroad workers use pickup trucks that have been adapted to easily switch between roads and rails, but nothing as fancy as the one in the video.

Link from the video to the artists’ website:


Great design! So smart to dual wheel the vehicle! Since the rails are in disrepair, there’s never any guarantee they won’t have to rely on standard tires. A bridge in good repair could still have a rail split blocking their path.

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See also: Joe Riley and Audrey Snyder’s Parallel Cases, wherein the artists build a railbike, ride the abandoned railroads of California, and explore, embrace, expand, and exculpate the legacy of the tramp printer.

(I can’t post an image, but click here for one: and go to the link above for many more.)

We have constructed two bicycles with attachments that allow them to run on abandoned railroad tracks. The rail-bikes are our way of producing an alternate mode of travel along these once-used lines. Our design involves a front wheel guide that clamps the bike onto one rail and an outrigger that provides balance. We believe that a first hand experience of the landscape, facilitated by these bicycles, is key to producing more than just a travel log of our journey. Our chosen mode of travel allows us to be immersed in the phenomenological relationship between travel and history, abandonment and what is lost when technology and tradition are rendered obsolete.

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The vehicle in Ark II was built off the Brubaker Box. If you’re interested in odd vehicles, do some further searches. It’s pretty neat!

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