Eastern Kentucky trail expanding thanks to $2 million grant

Published: Mar. 20, 2019 at 11:22 PM EDT
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A couple of Eastern Kentucky counties are preparing to add camping sites, a restaurant, horse stables, and cabins to an already popular, 18-mile rail trail.

The Dawkins Line Rail Trail takes riders, walkers, and runners along the route where trains roared through the hills of Magoffin and Johnson counties. It's 18-miles along a small, gravel trail that even takes you inside an old tunnel and across bridges.

Now it's set to add places to stay overnight, eat, and be entertained.

The president of the Royalton Rail Town, Victoria Doucette says, "this is a 15- acre bottom development, and on the far end down there, it's going to be primitive camping.

"We're going to have six, one- bedroom cabins, and we're going to have both traditional camping on both sides of the bottom there, some will be for large RVs, some for smaller."

Doucette is excited about a stage for concerts and events in Royalton.

"We will be doing live performances for people who are using our facilities or staying overnight or people who want to come from other areas," said Doucette.

She also hopes concerts there will be a big promotion for local talent.

Eventually, the rail trail will travel a total of 36-miles into Breathitt County.

"It's going to encourage people to build along the trail, and open small businesses if they can start a small business, it can grow because this is going to give a place for people to come, and stay overnight, extend their stay," Doucette said.

The public is invited to a meeting to discuss the project on Monday, March 25, at 6 pm, at the Magoffin County High School.