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I’m totally fascinated with train-hopping. Modern-day hobos migrating from place to place; willingly homeless and amassing an entire underground network of secret hangouts that criss-cross the country. And it’s apparently on the rise. I’m particularly interested in one self-taught photographer Mike Brodie who made waves documenting this band of travelers, but who hasn’t been heard from the interwebs since 2007….Such mystery!

To learn more about train-hopping, listen to this great interview and check this awesome flickr set.

Photo credits: Mike Brodie & SWAMPY



ah! I too am secretly obsessed with this lifestyle/culture and have seen these photos before but then couldn’t find them again (this was 2 years ago!) so glad you’ve brought them back!


This makes me think of Red Hunter. Check out his band “Peter and the Wolf”. His albums seem devoted to this mindset and lifestyle.


The photography is beautiful, but I’d like to temper it with this:

A friend of mine from high school was equally entranced with the train hopping subculture and took it up for a time. She lost one of her legs in a train hopping accident. Apparently this still happens fairly often. So, as gorgeous as this looks, I wish people would remember that it is really really dangerous.


Very true, you’re right Sarah! And uncomfortable, dirty, and lacking in proper meals as well. I guess that’s why I find it so intriguing, because it’s so foreign. You’d have to really *want* such a non-traditional lifestyle, and I find someone going against the grain like that inspiring. Shame about your friend though, I’m sorry! Hope she’s managing ok.


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