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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,seth in Olympia BS: Across America by train, would you? (57* d) RE: BS: Across America by train, would you? 24 Nov 09

I've been riding trains most of my life when I can. China, Europe and the U.S. I like European trains the best for transportation to and from post places on the continent. In my experience, mostly, smooth, organized, functional in Europe. Never had a bad train experience there, many weren't particularly memorable.
I traveled from Seattle to New York with my two newly adopted pre-teen daughters on Amtrak's Empire Builder. It was great from Seattle to Chicago, as long as I didn't expect anything too grand. My daughters, who had never been out of Tacoma, Washington in their lives were over the moon about the whole thing. Once we left Chicago, headed east, the rail experience got a lot more gnarly, with crowded cars, non-too - helpful staff and a really long wait for a connection on a freezing platform in Albany, New York.
The Chinese have one of the great rail systems in the world in my experience, but that's another story.
My most recent experience was riding the Coast Starlight(Stoplight) from Los Angeles to Seattle. Very nice crew. Very crappy train. But still a cool ride, though about 7 hours late. You can't worry about stuff like that with Amtrak. My late grandfather, a conductor for the old Nickel Plate Road when it was a major midwest passenger hauler, thought that having his train be on time was sort of important, but he left this world before what he spent his life making run beautifully became what we know as Amtrak.

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