Quick back story... On my drive home, I drive next to a fairly busy train track on an otherwise unused road -- the track is about half a mile either direction from any crossings, so I won't have to worry about the train's horn in a stereo pass-by. I plan on recording the pass-by sometime soon (it's been far too cold lately to sit out and wait for the train), but I was also thinking about ways to maximize the single experience.
One of the thoughts was using contact mics on the rails, to get the sound of the train approaching from as far away as I can. My biggest fear from this is if I'm recording hot, will the signal from those mics damage my h4n as the train passes (which I suspect will be enough to damage the mics), or is this relatively safe to my equipment?
Just to clarify, I plan on being probably 30+ feet away as the train passes, with the h4n set up on a gorillapod 15-20 feet away, or as far away as I can with the contact mic's cord.