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Amtrak 5 and 6 via Wyoming

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Geordie405

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 2, 2017
Messages
17
As I am currently on train 6(11) just east of Green River I thought it useful to post a brief synopsis of yesterday’s fun and games with 6(10) and 1105(10) as there’s a lot of speculation and misinformation on another forum (which I read but won’t pay the subscription for)!

My wife and I boarded 6(10) in Sacramento heading to Denver.

Waking up on the 11th we were roughly 3 1/2 hours late due to freight train interference near SLC. We remained delayed until arrival in Grand Junction.

On arrival in Grand Junction we were told that we were being held there until at least 8pm as the track east (and the interstate) were closed due to wildfires.

We headed into town for beers and dinner. When we returned to the station at around 6.30pm the train had been turned on the wye and was pointing back West.

We were told we were heading back to Emeryville as 1105 and if we wanted to continue our journey east we’d need to change trains at SLC onto 6(11) which was itself running 2+ hours late.

There was NO bus bridge. Passengers on 1105(10) were to head back to Denver as train 6 and those of us on 6(10) would head back west on 1105.

Rebooking was made exceptionally difficult by Amtrak’s decision to zero out all availability on 6(11). We could not rebook either online, via the call centre or via the agent at Grand Junction. When it was re-opened we had to call Amtrak. Wait times were up to to 2 hours+ and so I simply bought a new ticket from SLC to DEN and will deal with Customer Relations in due course.

Train 6(11) is currently on the move east of Green River where we had a crew change and passengers were allowed down on the ballast for a leg stretch / fresh air/ smoke break.

Train 5(11) is held at Denver until 3pm due to UP performing track work.

Based on what we’ve been told we’ll be in Denver around 8-9 pm this evening so roughly 26 hours later than scheduled!

Kudos to all the Amtrak personnel on the ground who have done a stellar job in difficult circumstances.
 

oregon pioneer

Conductor
Joined
Feb 15, 2011
Messages
2,273
Location
near Seneca, Oregon
Wow, what a story. Mentally filing the "must NEW ticket because of technical glitch" part for future reference.
I've been through the Rockies enough times that I would love to do the Wyoming detour, even though I've driven I-80 and know it is mostly sagebrush.
 

railiner

Conductor
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Messages
8,277
Location
Palm Beach County
Sorry, but after reading and rereading the original post...and the thread title...I don't see where the trains are rerouted via Wyoming, unless Green River means Green River, Wy., and not Green River, Ut....🤔
 

AmtrakBlue

Conductor
Gathering Team Member
Joined
May 6, 2011
Messages
11,848
Location
Delaware
Wow, what a story. Mentally filing the "must NEW ticket because of technical glitch" part for future reference.
I've been through the Rockies enough times that I would love to do the Wyoming detour, even though I've driven I-80 and know it is mostly sagebrush.
I'm sitting here wishing I was a "drop everything" type of person and get myself on either 5 or 6 quickly. Alas, I'm not, plus I'm having too much fun, not, trying to figure out supplemental plans to medicare.
 

AmtrakBlue

Conductor
Gathering Team Member
Joined
May 6, 2011
Messages
11,848
Location
Delaware
Sorry, but after reading and rereading the original post...and the thread title...I don't see where the trains are rerouted via Wyoming, unless Green River means Green River, Wy., and not Green River, Ut....🤔
It is being rerouted through WY due to a fire in the canyon east of Grand Junction.
 

AmtrakBlue

Conductor
Gathering Team Member
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May 6, 2011
Messages
11,848
Location
Delaware

Siegmund

Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 19, 2018
Messages
197
Location
northwestern Montana
Heck of an interesting circumstance where both the highway and the railroad are closed. (They may still have been better off with a bus bridge via a circuitous route.)

Nice opportunity for people to get some rare mileage the next few days. UP across Wyoming is a LITTLE more interesting than I-80 across Wyoming is -- places where the railroad follows a creek/snakes around badlands while the interstate is up on high prairie.

unless Green River means Green River, Wy., and not Green River, Ut...
For anyone else confused about the name -- yes, Green River WY is on the UP and Green River UT is on the ex-D&RGW, and the person who started the thread is one of very few to go through both of them in the same 24 hours. It is the same river, running north to south from southwest Wyoming into eastern Utah, but the two cities are a couple hundred miles apart. The river travels through enough deep canyons (some now drowned by Glen Canyon Dam) that it never was much of a transportation corridor within Utah.
 

brianpmcdonnell17

Conductor
Joined
Mar 5, 2016
Messages
1,409
Location
Chicago, Illinois
Heck of an interesting circumstance where both the highway and the railroad are closed. (They may still have been better off with a bus bridge via a circuitous route.)

Nice opportunity for people to get some rare mileage the next few days. UP across Wyoming is a LITTLE more interesting than I-80 across Wyoming is -- places where the railroad follows a creek/snakes around badlands while the interstate is up on high prairie.



For anyone else confused about the name -- yes, Green River WY is on the UP and Green River UT is on the ex-D&RGW, and the person who started the thread is one of very few to go through both of them in the same 24 hours. It is the same river, running north to south from southwest Wyoming into eastern Utah, but the two cities are a couple hundred miles apart. The river travels through enough deep canyons (some now drowned by Glen Canyon Dam) that it never was much of a transportation corridor within Utah.
The eastbound is now terminating in Grand Junction and the westbound is terminating in Denver so there may not be any more detours occuring.
 

DCAKen

Service Attendant
Joined
Jun 24, 2015
Messages
109
Heck of an interesting circumstance where both the highway and the railroad are closed. (They may still have been better off with a bus bridge via a circuitous route.)
The I-70 closure was causing major traffic problems on other roads, so I'm not surprised there was no bus bridge. The state highway over Independence Pass was also closed due to the truck traffic attempting to use it as a detour. Big vehicles were getting stuck and blocking the road, causing even more backups.

 

Geordie405

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 2, 2017
Messages
17
Heck of an interesting circumstance where both the highway and the railroad are closed. (They may still have been better off with a bus bridge via a circuitous route.)

Nice opportunity for people to get some rare mileage the next few days. UP across Wyoming is a LITTLE more interesting than I-80 across Wyoming is -- places where the railroad follows a creek/snakes around badlands while the interstate is up on high prairie.



For anyone else confused about the name -- yes, Green River WY is on the UP and Green River UT is on the ex-D&RGW, and the person who started the thread is one of very few to go through both of them in the same 24 hours. It is the same river, running north to south from southwest Wyoming into eastern Utah, but the two cities are a couple hundred miles apart. The river travels through enough deep canyons (some now drowned by Glen Canyon Dam) that it never was much of a transportation corridor within Utah.
Thanks for the clarification! I’d totally forgotten about the Green River, UT station stop on the regular route.

We finally made it into Denver around 8.45 pm yesterday so roughly 26 hours later than scheduled.

Yesterday was the only detour. Today’s planned detours were cancelled yesterday afternoon as UP wouldn’t allow Amtrak to run over their metal due to maintenance work taking place at Greely!
 

Geordie405

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 2, 2017
Messages
17
The eastbound is now terminating in Grand Junction and the westbound is terminating in Denver so there may not be any more detours occuring.
That’s certainly what we were told yesterday. Today’s planned detours via Wyoming have been cancelled with 6 terminating at Grand Junction and 1105 at Denver.
 

railiner

Conductor
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Messages
8,277
Location
Palm Beach County
Yesterday was the only detour. Today’s planned detours were cancelled yesterday afternoon as UP wouldn’t allow Amtrak to run over their metal due to maintenance work taking place at Greely!
I am somewhat surprised that the UP wouldn't be more accommodating to Amtrak in this situation, since the blockage was on their own railroad, and not someone else's... the UP that I remembered in the seventies and eighties I believe would have found a workaround for that maintenance in Greeley, delaying it if necessary at least until the regular route reopened. And if not able to, would have arranged to run the detoured train from Wyoming down to Denver on the BNSF line or perhaps even directly to Nebraska on their mainline...
 

20th Century Rider

OBS Chief
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
707
Location
Oregon Coast
As I am currently on train 6(11) just east of Green River I thought it useful to post a brief synopsis of yesterday’s fun and games with 6(10) and 1105(10) as there’s a lot of speculation and misinformation on another forum (which I read but won’t pay the subscription for)!

My wife and I boarded 6(10) in Sacramento heading to Denver.

Waking up on the 11th we were roughly 3 1/2 hours late due to freight train interference near SLC. We remained delayed until arrival in Grand Junction.

On arrival in Grand Junction we were told that we were being held there until at least 8pm as the track east (and the interstate) were closed due to wildfires.

We headed into town for beers and dinner. When we returned to the station at around 6.30pm the train had been turned on the wye and was pointing back West.

We were told we were heading back to Emeryville as 1105 and if we wanted to continue our journey east we’d need to change trains at SLC onto 6(11) which was itself running 2+ hours late.

There was NO bus bridge. Passengers on 1105(10) were to head back to Denver as train 6 and those of us on 6(10) would head back west on 1105.

Rebooking was made exceptionally difficult by Amtrak’s decision to zero out all availability on 6(11). We could not rebook either online, via the call centre or via the agent at Grand Junction. When it was re-opened we had to call Amtrak. Wait times were up to to 2 hours+ and so I simply bought a new ticket from SLC to DEN and will deal with Customer Relations in due course.

Train 6(11) is currently on the move east of Green River where we had a crew change and passengers were allowed down on the ballast for a leg stretch / fresh air/ smoke break.

Train 5(11) is held at Denver until 3pm due to UP performing track work.

Based on what we’ve been told we’ll be in Denver around 8-9 pm this evening so roughly 26 hours later than scheduled!

Kudos to all the Amtrak personnel on the ground who have done a stellar job in difficult circumstances.
I've experienced 15 hour delays etc. but nothing like this! Simply amazing at the lack of customer service! :mad:
 

Geordie405

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 2, 2017
Messages
17
I've experienced 15 hour delays etc. but nothing like this! Simply amazing at the lack of customer service! :mad:
The staff on the ground did a pretty good job at keeping us all informed of what was going on but they were just as frustrated I think, especially with the challenges around rebooking and the fact that the following day’s train was zeroed out.

At the end of the day we did get where we were going but we’d have preferred that extra day in Denver instead of on Amtrak (even via Wyoming as that route is dud for me having travelled on a previous detour via Wyoming!).
 

20th Century Rider

OBS Chief
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
707
Location
Oregon Coast
The staff on the ground did a pretty good job at keeping us all informed of what was going on but they were just as frustrated I think, especially with the challenges around rebooking and the fact that the following day’s train was zeroed out.

At the end of the day we did get where we were going but we’d have preferred that extra day in Denver instead of on Amtrak (even via Wyoming as that route is dud for me having travelled on a previous detour via Wyoming!).
Amtrak's management structure is not connected well... kind-a haphazard so that individual employees always seem to have their hands tied. Add this to system deterioration and lack of funding for maintenance... places customers in a lurch. After you return you may want to call customer service and request some kind of a transportation credit voucher... although with all the cutbacks it may be hard to apply...
 

Rasputin

OBS Chief
Joined
Jan 17, 2019
Messages
761
We enjoyed our detour on 6 through Wyoming a few years back. We enjoyed the scenery and the antelope sightings. However there were no stops allowed for passengers just stops to change crews. Passengers were not allowed to detrain anyplace between Salt Lake City and Denver and there were no smoke breaks which made it difficult for some.

I don't know if that is still the practice on not.
 

manchacrr

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 17, 2008
Messages
339
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
As per Amtrak Alerts today, the California Zephyr is once again detouring and no longer terminating in Denver and Grand Junction:

@AmtrakAlerts
California Zephyr Train 1105 that departed CHI on 8/13 will operate on a detour from DEN to SLC due to ongoing wildfires. All stops between DEN & SLC will be missed. Limited alternate transport provided to onboard customers only. For reservation assistance, call 800-USA-RAIL.

@AmtrakAlerts
California Zephyr Train 6 that departed Emeryville on 8/13 will operate on detour route Salt Lake City to Denver missing PRO, HER, GRI, GJT, GSC, GRA, WIP stops due to wildfires. Limited alt transport will be provided to onboard customers only. Call 1-800-872-7245 for more info.

@AmtrakAlerts
California Zephyr Train 1105 departing Chicago (CHI) on 8/14 will operate on a detour between Denver (DEN) & Salt Lake City (SLC) due to ongoing wildfires. No alternate transport provided for missed stops between DEN & SLC. For reservation assistance, please call 800-USA-RAIL.

@AmtrakAlerts
California Zephyr Train 6 departing Emeryville (EMY) on 8/14 will operate on a detour between Salt Lake City (SLC) & Denver (DEN) due to ongoing wildfires. No alternate transport provided for missed stops between SLC & DEN. For reservation assistance, please call 800-USA-RAIL.
 

NativeSon5859

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 5, 2003
Messages
984
Location
NOLA
I changed my 422 LAX-CHI to the LAX-SBA-EMY-CHI route on the 19th just in case the trains will still see a re-route via Wyoming.
 

tgstubbs1

Service Attendant
Joined
Mar 3, 2020
Messages
150
It is supposed to cool down this weekend and some storms... maybe that will help. It's a big deal, I-70 has been closed for too long.
 

John-MCPO-USN

Train Attendant
Joined
Apr 6, 2011
Messages
71
According to AMTRAK 1-800 number - and the Track-my-Train portal - 5/6 are running thru Colorado again - but I-70 is still closed......I have a trip planned for 8/29 (DEN->SAC) - should be an interesting ride thru the canyon....
 
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