Another Long-Distance Amtrak Trip Coming Up

In a few days I’ll be off on another cross-country train trip. I really have two destinations: the first is Washington, DC, for one of our semi-annual NARP* meetings, and then Boston, where I will indulge my other passion and see four Red Sox games in venerable Fenway Park. But before all that I’m going to have the pleasure of introducing one of my granddaughters to overnight train travel. She’s almost nine and I’ll meet her and my daughter in Los Angeles for the overnight ride up to Seattle aboard Amtrak’s Coast Starlight, which features the luxurious Pacific Parlour Car for sleeping car passengers. It’s a wonderfully scenic trip and a highlight is waking up early on the morning of the second day near Dunsmuir, California, as the train circles around the base of spectacular Mount Shasta – still covered with lots of snow this early in the year. After a couple of days in Seattle – and at least one lunch and one dinner at my favorite Italian restaurant, Assaggio’s – I’ll take the Empire Builder on the two-night ride to Chicago and, after an overnight there, catching my favorite eastern train, the Cardinal.

This train is, in my opinion, Amtrak’s best kept secret. After the overnight ride down through Indiana and Kentucky, the train takes several hours passing through the spectacular New River Gorge before climbing over the Blue Ridge Mountains and heading into the Washington area. As always, I’ll do my best to post regular accounts of events of interest along the way.

*National Association of Railroad Passengers