Recent content by Josh M

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  1. J

    Specific Tips for Upcoming LD Trip (CL & Silver Meteor)?

    Thank you, much appreciated!
  2. J

    Praise report form not working?

    I've run into an issue submitting commendations after past trips, most recently in 2019. I typed in my comments but then found I couldn't hit submit because, it turned out, my message was too long...except they didn't tell me that was the issue, and I ended up figuring it out on my own. I then...
  3. J

    Specific Tips for Upcoming LD Trip (CL & Silver Meteor)?

    A month from today, November 11th, I'm leaving on my 4th long distance Amtrak trip. I'll be going from my home station in Royal Oak, MI, to Chicago, then on to D.C. aboard the Capitol Limited (I wanted to avoid boarding at zero dark thirty in Toledo, and an afternoon in Chicago having lunch with...
  4. J

    Watching the Weather from a train

    The only real inclement weather I've experienced so far was on the Vermonter in August 2019. I was riding from New Haven to Montpelier, and there was moderate to heavy rain from just south of Hartford all the way up to about White River. The sound of the rain hitting the top of the car and the...
  5. J

    Passenger mistaking someone else's room for theirs

    The SCA on my last trip in 2019, on the LSL, did that. Lovely little multi-colored post-it notes that said "Welcome aboard, [Name]!" with a smiley face and indicated the station where each passenger was disembarking. I'm sure it was as much for her recollection of our names and destinations as...
  6. J

    Booked Coach ticket on Wolverine... Should I bid for upgrade?

    Personally, I prefer business class on the Wolverine. The 2x1 seating means I can sit by myself (I get on before the stops at Detroit, Dearborn, and Ann Arbor when the remaining BC seats usually fill up), and I enjoy the extra leg room and free coffee. Plus, as 20th Century Rider says, it tends...
  7. J

    Chicago to Toronto via Detroit and Windsor

    Although I haven't taken the route per se, as a Metro Detroit resident I've had to get across the border to the Windsor station before (and didn't want to take and leave my own car). This was pre-Covid. Unfortunately, whether you can even get an Uber across is going to hinge on what the...
  8. J

    Mandatory COVID vaccination for all Amtrak Employees

    Good to know that this will be in place before my trip in mid-November. When I saw the email today, I wondered before I read it all the way if it was to announce that they were going to be requiring it for staff and passengers.
  9. J

    Exceptional Employees

    I've always taken time to contact Amtrak about good (and bad) experiences with staff after each of my trips. The SCA on my first long distance trip on the Zephyr, Francine, was amazing and made the whole trip that much better. (She was so outstanding I still remember her name 6 years later, and...
  10. J

    $66 billion for Amtrak

    Looks like a lot of stations here in MI would be getting a ticket agent. I find it very interesting that Royal Oak (my "home" station) is one of them, when the Royal Oak station is literally just an outdoor platform with a shelter, but Pontiac, which has a small but nice and still fairly new...
  11. J

    Vermonter now running to Vermont?

    The NB Vermonter from DC is showing as running all the way through to St. Albans, and there's a dot on the map for the SB Vermonter in St. Albans with a scheduled departure of 9:15 A.M. So nice to see service returning everywhere! Here in Michigan, today is the first day of two round-trip runs...
  12. J

    California Zephyr in and out of Denver

    On-time arrival in Denver is around 7:00, 7:15 A.M. When I took the CZ in 2015, I had showered and sat down for breakfast as we were getting into the outskirts of Denver; I think we were running about 20 minutes late. If you're getting off at Denver, then you'll probably be able to grab...
  13. J

    No Sightseer Lounge on California Zephyr #6 (9)

    Regarding Sightseer Lounges more generally, for those who have social media accounts (specifically Facebook) Amtrak just made a post touting the Capitol Limited. I made sure to chime in about my upcoming trip (this fall) on the CL and my hope that the SSL will be restored to the train by then so...
  14. J

    Changes to Amtrak Midwest and additional Wolverine RT

    September 7th? Excellent. Hopefully nothing interferes with that! I'm booked on the early train on November 11th out of Royal Oak, and I've been hoping they'd reinstate the mid-day train before then so I can switch. As much as I enjoy the ride, being at the station before 6 A.M. is just painful.
  15. J

    Most scenic route from east to west

    P.S. I also can't speak directly on the scenery going west on either the Cardinal or the Crescent for the first leg of your journey. From the videos I've seen on YouTube (check out trip reports from YouTube users like Simply Railway), scenery-wise your better bet is probably the Cardinal.