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Imagecat This article is about the Resistance escape route. For the railroad in a literal sense, see Rail transport.

Not to be mistaken for the real Underground Railroad, which can be found here.

"We've been helping people escape the city on foot. It's a dangerous route to my father's lab, through the old canals."
Alyx Vance[src]

The Underground Railroad, also named Underground, Railroad or Railway, is a line of covert Resistance stations, hidden around City 17, that were designed to help refugees escape.


Station 12 inside

Station 12, one of the many railroad stations, shortly after it was raided by Civil Protection.

There were many safehouses in the Canals, a drainage network in City 17. Safehouses ordinarily contained a radio, supplies, and items necessary for a few resistance members to live there. These safehouses were called stations, and were numbered for radio chatter purposes. Whenever a refugee came through, the resistance members stationed at the safehouse would provide supplies, weapons, and help orient the refugee to the next safehouse.

Because of the heavy presence of Civil Protection officers patrolling the canals and rivers, safehouses were located in secret, underground areas to avoid detection.

One large safehouse/outpost housed an Airboat, an amphibious vehicle that was lent to refugees to cross the last half of the journey to Black Mesa East. This last part of the journey contained stretches of toxic waste material, and made the airboat necessary for crossing it.

Gordon Freeman made his way through the resistance canal network on his way to Black Mesa East, and was the last refugee through. In their attempts to apprehend Freeman, Civil Protection came down hard on the Railroad. The canal system was flooded with Manhacks, CP patrols carried out summary executions of resistance personnel, and bases on the river were bombarded with headcrab shells. Save for a few survivors, the Railroad was all but destroyed.

Notable stations[]

All of these stations were eventually overrun by the Combine.

Behind the scenes[]

  • The Underground Railroad may have been named after the similarly titled system of safehouses in the United States, set up to aid slaves escaping from the South before and during the Civil War. This was possibly because the two draw many parallels between each other.

List of appearances[]

  • Half-Life 2 (First appearance)