Updated: November 2017

Thomas Train Set - Motorized Trains:

Do you have a Thomas the Train fan in your household? My son is just approaching the age of 4 and his life is built around Thomas toys including the DVD's, wooden trains, Thomas the Train Table and he's been going strong for a long time. I would have thought that he would move on to a new character or set of toys, but his trains still dominate his daily routine. For the longest time he was only interested in the wooden push trains that have magnets so you can couple them together and pull them along on the wooden tracks. We have been building track after track and he loves them. He finally decided that the motorized train sets from Thomas is what we wanted to get for Christmas so we were happy - he told Santa he would like the Thomas and Friends TrackMaster Thomas at Action Canyon.

The motorized trains are completely different than the wooden trains that kids push on the tracks. The battery powered trains are a step up and often a hard choice for youngsters. My son always felt like he was losing control by letting the battery power the train versus he himself doing the pushing. Once he realized how much fun it is to have multiple trains going around a track on their own he wanted some. Now he has quite a few of the motorized trains - Thomas, Percy, Henry, Salty, and Molly. They require either a C battery or AA batteries to run. I do recommend buying rechargeables as kids tend to go through batteries fast since they leave on the engines and the battery life is greatly reduced. As for the motorized trains, they are sturdy, easy to maneuver and seem to be holding up quite nicely. Our son loves to load up the freight cars and have races along his tracks to see which trains are the fastest. He literally replays the episodes you find on the Thomas and Friends DVD's. The Thomas the Train sets are available on Amazon and usually sell for about $100 with the more expensive train sets going for $200+. We have the Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway - Down by the Docks Set which is still used quite often by our son on top of the train table, but with the recent purchase of the motorized trains and the Action Canyon set we will eventually get rid of the table and older wooden sets. The one drawback to buying Thomas trains is that they are quite expensive when compared to the cheaper BRIO trains and sets. You can literally get a complete BRIO set for less than $100 and the comparable Thomas and Friends set would be well over $200. It's all in the brand and you will definitely pay for it. There is a complete Thomas store on Amazon here with everything you can imagine including engines, sets, bridges, tunnels, tracks, buildings, tables, and more.

Thomas and Friends Action Canyon:

RECOMMENDED - The Thomas and Friends TrackMaster Thomas at Action Canyon - is a wonderful kids toy that I think is well worth the money given all the hours my son has already used it. We got it for Christmas and it's been a big hit so far. The track is pretty easy to assemble, it took my wife about 15 minutes to get the pieces together. The hardest part is perhaps the connection of the bridge and the waterfall section. There's not a lot to the track, but there is a mountain that the trains climb up and then go across a rickety bridge (that can collapse if you push a button) and then they go down the waterfall. The front of the box makes it look like real water, but don't worry it's just blue colored track so no watery messes here. The motorized trains go across the bridge and down the highest section of the waterfall or you can collapse the bridge and have the train come out of the middle section of the waterfall. The set comes with Thomas the Train motorized and you need to put in a single AA battery to get him to run properly. Other parents posted comments on Amazon like "great deal", "best motorized set yet", "cool Thomas toy". My son thinks it's amazing and we would definitely reommend it for other kids that are about 4 years old. If you have more than one motorized train then multiple kids can play at once. The price was just under $40 when we bought it, but since then it's been out of stock and priced closer to $70 in some stores. Be patient and it will return to the $40 mark when supplies increase.