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Showing posts with label AmTrak. Show all posts
Showing posts with label AmTrak. Show all posts

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Choo Choo

The other day I was on the laptop which has Yahoo Messenger installed on it and if you have Messenger, then you know that it pops up a news window with top stories on it.  I will usually go through the stories to see what they are and if any interest me, I will read them.  Well one caught my attention and it was about train rides that I thought was cool.

I've always been interested in trains, not the wearing an Engineers cap and collecting model trains but in riding them.  I was able to ride on one here locally when I was a kid around Christmas time and it was quite fun.  These were just old restored cars, but it was an experience that you keep for a lifetime.

And I want to do it more now that I read that particular story on Yahoo.

The closest scenic train ride is in Georgia.  Quite a ride from the panhandle of Florida just to take a train ride if you ask me.  Then I got to thinking if there was anything local and remembered AmTrak used to have a station in Chipley but has been closed awhile back for lack of passengers.  So, I got on AmTrak.com to see the nearest station was and it's FREAKING NEW ORLEANS!

Then I started to do some research on tickets, which are fairly inexpensive. 69.00 bucks from New Orleans to Atlanta.  Not too bad minus the drive from here to New Orleans which would eat up 5 plus hours for a 10 hour train ride.  You could get there faster by driving then taking a train.

Then I did more research and the Sunset Limited service was discontinued after hurricane Katrina in '05 with damage to the lines that serviced the Gulf Coast.  Those lines have since been repaired but service has yet to resume.

The Sunset Limited ran coast to coast starting in Orlando, Fl to Los Angeles, CA.  Now the train only runs from New Orleans, LA to Los Angeles, CA.  I may not be interested in running to California but a trip to Orlando or from Chipley or Crestview to anywhere would be fun and would be cheaper than flying without the pre-requisite pat down by the TSA.

I have a friend that would like to see snow in Tennessee and I am thinking a train ride would be great seeing as neither of us are familiar with driving in snow but I doubt she would be interested in driving to New Orleans to catch a train to Tennessee.

So help me make it possible for the Sunset Limited to be restored back to its full route pre-Katrina.  Follow this link to contact AmTrak and mention interest in having the Sunset Limited restored beyond New Orleans into the Florida panhandle.


Also please, contact your State Representatives as well.  It is more up to the states to help in this matter as the train stations are owned by state or local municipalities and it will require their help on this as well.