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  1. Palmland

    New head of operations at NS

    Trains newswire reports that Cindy Sanborn is the new head of operations at the NS. Why do we care? She may well be more receptive to Amtrak schedule changes and on time performance. At the least, she understands railroad operations before PSR and how to run trains, including passenger, in an...
  2. Palmland

    Amtrak’s Flynn on impact of COVID-19

    Saw this on the CBS Morning News show. Of interest to many is his comment on maintaining LD service, even if reduced frequency as a result of 85% drop in ridership.
  3. Palmland

    What will the LD network look like in FY 2021?

    As reported recently, Amtrak will be reducing its operations with FY21 due to the anticipated significant reduction in ridership that is expected. The level of reduction depends on receiving supplemental federal funding. So, I thought it would be interesting (fun?) to speculate on what that...
  4. Palmland

    Cafe Car Food

    There has been a lot of discussion about food on Amtrak but I’m trying to understand more about the food on cafe cars, especially in view of the general dislike for flex dining with its limited offerings especially for a lighter lunch selection. I am returning home on train 89 after a weekend...
  5. Palmland

    River Runner questions

    We will be in CO and KS this spring and are considering including a return on the River Runner from KC to St. Louis (then Southwest to Atlanta). Has anyone taken that route recently? What is the BC car like and is it worth the additional cost? Where is it positioned on the train? Any scenery of...
  6. Palmland

    The Grand Canyon

    In late October my wife and I spent a couple days in Williams, AZ and the Grand Canyon. Since we were taking the GC RR train in the morning we stayed in the oldest building in town, the Grand Canyon Hotel. We like older buildings with some history; it was centrally located downtown; and it was...
  7. Palmland

    Florida to the Midwest

    Another topic on service from Florida prompted this one. While we can all dream of a reincarnation of the South Wind, City of Miami, or even Amtrak’s Floridian for Florida to Chicago service, I think most of us realize that’s not happening. But, it seems to me the existing schedule of the...
  8. Palmland

    Cascade Service - Talgo replacements

    Got this email today from WSDOT: WSDOT awarded $37.5 million federal grant for train equipment WSDOT received notification this week from the Federal Railroad Administration that it was awarded a $37.5 million Federal-State Partnership for State of Good Repair grant to acquire at least three...
  9. Palmland

    Auto Train Improvements?

    I know the changes on January 15 to the A-T, as posted by the link jls provided on dining car changes, have been discussed in that topic. But I thought that it might deserve its own topic since it appears to signal a shift from Amtrak's current direction of eliminating amenities including full...
  10. Palmland

    Amtrak to Northern Arizona

    This fall we will be arriving Flagstaff from Las Vegas, NM on the SWC. My questions are not really Amtrak related so feel free to move this to another forum. With a 8:32pm scheduled arrival and the train often late, I’d be interested in any hotel recommendations. The Monte Vista looks...
  11. Palmland

    Amtrak to DCA airport

    Next month we’ll be on a regional train from Richmond to Washington. Is it it better to get off at Alexandria or Washington to catch a flight at DCA? Which WMATA route would we use, or is it better to use Uber/Lyft?
  12. Palmland

    Palmetto and Ashland, VA

    I am returning home on the Palmetto after a weekend near Richmond in Ashland, VA for a guys only basketball weekend at RMC. This, of course, required a round trip on the Palmetto from Florence, SC. Say what you will about Anderson but there are some signs that his airline efficiency mentality is...
  13. Palmland

    Vermonter trip

    Maybe 8/10 years ago we had a pleasant, if slow, trip on the Vermonter from St. Albans to NYP. We will be traveling to VT in August and are considering taking the VT again (Port Kent option appears too difficult with schedule changes). My question, is the consist still the same as it was then: a...
  14. Palmland

    Acela Competition?

    Saw this article in USA Today "On Monday, JetBlue launched service between New York’s LaGuardia Airport and Boston Logan International Airport. With this route — which includes six weekday...
  15. Palmland

    Sunday liquor?

    I'm on train 89 and tried to order a beer with lunch. The cafe attendant said he could not sell liquor on Sunday for the entire NYP-SAV route. Is that a new rule or is he just wrong?
  16. Palmland

    Durbin and Greenbrier Valley RR - Cass RR

    Two weeks ago I returned from a 4 day visit to the D&GVRR on three of its trains: The Cheat River Salamander Elkins-Spruce, WV, Cass RR Spruce-Cass, and the Durbin Rocket that operates a few miles along the river from Durbin on a former C&O branch line. We tried to get on the parlor car for the...
  17. Palmland

    Reconfigure Transition Cars?

    Amtrak seems to have a shortage of Superliners, especially during high demand summer season. All trains with Superliners have a transition car that allows the crew to access the baggage car and provide rooms for the OBS crew - other than SCA who stay in their sleeper. When the cars were built...
  18. Palmland

    Seattle question

    I know there have been a lot of improvements to King St station recently. We will be taking the EB later this week and have a couple questions. Is there baggage storage for a couple hours. Or, even better, is there recap service who can keep our bags and get us early boarding? Also, any nearby...
  19. Palmland

    Empire Builder - which one?

    In June we will be taking the Empire Builder to Chicago from either Portland or Seattle. Which one is the most interesting from a scenery, service, and railfan point of view? We have taken both routes west and so are familiar with the route, but things do look different going in the other...
  20. Palmland

    Advice on Empire Service stations

    Family members will be catching a train in upstate NY next year. What is the best station for waiting several hours? The options are Schenectady, Amsterdam, Utica,or Rome. The station must be safe, reasonably attractive, and within walking distance of suitable restaurants or shops that might...