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Amtrak's Least-used Stations

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jiml

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That was interesting. Most of those I've blown through unaware.
Likewise. I've been on the Cardinal 5 or 6 times in total - one of which had a Parks narrator on-board, but I think the focus was on other elements of the route and they may have either boarded or detrained at Thurmond without any mention of the station's significance.
 

tim49424

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one of which had a Parks narrator on-board
If it's the same person, I know her. She's not there anymore due to cancer and chemo. I'm not exactly sure if or when she's to return but also her time before she got sick was her time on the Cardinal was limited due to her job requirements. She did put on a very interesting program. One time while riding the Cardinal to Charlottesville, she boarded and sat with me as she wasn't scheduled to do a presentation. Out of habit, she gave me a private narration from time to time. I know she keeps in contact with most of the crews and is especially close one of the sleeper car attendants, who is retiring either next month or in December. She really misses her friends on the train and many times will head to her home station just to see them. If I recall correctly, there might be another narrator but also I vaguely recall that she wasn't working either anymore. It's too bad because there's a lot of history on that stretch of the route.

Indeed, she did a great explanation of the goings on (or lack of) in Thurmond. I was watching a non-train video regarding ghost towns and they had a more in depth story of the town.

I'm surprised that in the video you posted that he didn't mention Browning, MT. I'd be surprised if they had more ridership than the others mentioned. I've been on the Empire Builder out there more than a dozen times in both directions combined and only recall stopping there once or twice. It's a seasonal stop but I don't know whether it's a flag stop or not.
 
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ehbowen

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I'm surprised that in the video you posted that he didn't mention Browning, MT. I'd be surprised if they had more ridership than the others mentioned. I've been on the Empire Builder out there more than a dozen times in both directions combined and only recall stopping there once or twice. It's a seasonal stop but I don't know whether it's a flag stop or not.
Browning is actually a decent sized town; I've driven through there with my Dad. It's not a virtual ghost town like Thurmond or Sanderson, TX. IIRC (not looking it up, just memory) it's the seat of government of the Blackfeet Nation and has quite a good-sized tributary area. Although it's a seasonal stop I'd be surprised if it qualifies as "little used" while it's in operation.
 

Qapla

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That is a nice video

Here is an "Honorable Mention"

Waldo Florida - it is no longer used for Amtrak trains, especially since Amtrak no longer runs trains through Waldo ... but, it is still owned by Amtrak and qualifies as a Thruway Bus Stop although I'm not sure when the last time was when the bus actually stopped there.

Recently, when they had that AT derailment, the AT did use the tracks going through Waldo ... but, of course, the train did not stop at the station.
 

tim49424

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Browning is actually a decent sized town; I've driven through there with my Dad. It's not a virtual ghost town like Thurmond or Sanderson, TX. IIRC (not looking it up, just memory) it's the seat of government of the Blackfeet Nation and has quite a good-sized tributary area. Although it's a seasonal stop I'd be surprised if it qualifies as "little used" while it's in operation.
According to Wikipedia, Browning’s population is 1,016. The video didn’t quantify by size of community. I know that Albion, Michigan is a Division III college town, not been there myself but my cousin went to Albion College. I actually was quite surprised when I saw their ridership. The honorable mention one at Greenfield Village, that stop was out of convenience to the visitors. The city Dearborn is actually a quite large city which I’ve been to several times both to go to Greenfield Village/Henry Ford Museum and to take my nephew’s fiancé for follow ups to her double transplant surgeries at the Henry Ford Hospital. Both Albion and Dearborn are far far larger than Browning.
 

Exvalley

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I've been to Browning. I wouldn't describe it as a town that offers much to the tourist. It's more of a "passing through" kind of place unless you have some sort of connection to the town.
 

tim49424

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I've been to Browning. I wouldn't describe it as a town that offers much to the tourist. It's more of a "passing through" kind of place unless you have some sort of connection to the town.
Exactly. I am wondering what exactly their daily ridership is. The more I think about it, the more I believe that my experiences are much closer to the norm and not the exception. It’s hard for me to know because I’ve only been through there a couple of times in season.
 

anumberone

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I will have to say, I may not have seen the Sanderson Station, I can't remember. But when I traveled through that area I marked it on my GPS because I recognized the area type terrain from the Movie Giant and I wanted to see if it was close. The waypoint I marked on my GPS was about 60 miles from Marfa where the movie location was. Sanderson is 95 miles from Marfa. The high plains. Not much going on.
 

yarrow

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browing is, as noted, the administrative center of the blackfeet nation. also the home to the museum of the plains indian(i am sure closed during covid). browning is 13 miles from the eastern border of glacier national park(east entrances closed during covid). the glacier park(east glacier)station is open during summer when most people would travel to the area. the browning stop is open in the winter.
 

tim49424

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According to the Great American Stations website, ridership for Browning in FY 2019 was 1255.
That's a whole lot more than I would ever have imagined, however in the grand scheme of things, not very many. Of course, we have to consider, this is a seasonal station, which the numbers surprise me even more looking at it that way.
 

ehbowen

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That's a whole lot more than I would ever have imagined, however in the grand scheme of things, not very many. Of course, we have to consider, this is a seasonal station, which the numbers surprise me even more looking at it that way.
Again, while the town is small it has a generous unincorporated tributary area. And there aren't a whole lot of alternatives to Amtrak if you're taking a long-distance trip into or out of the area.
 

ehbowen

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I will have to say, I may not have seen the Sanderson Station, I can't remember. But when I traveled through that area I marked it on my GPS because I recognized the area type terrain from the Movie Giant and I wanted to see if it was close. The waypoint I marked on my GPS was about 60 miles from Marfa where the movie location was. Sanderson is 95 miles from Marfa. The high plains. Not much going on.
Not much left of it to see; the original Southern Pacific station was demolished several years back. Now there's basically just the remnants of a platform and a sign.
 

tim49424

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Again, while the town is small it has a generous unincorporated tributary area. And there aren't a whole lot of alternatives to Amtrak if you're taking a long-distance trip into or out of the area.
I understand what you’ve said. I still have the right to be surprised, don’t I?
 

tim49424

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Found this on that site

View attachment 19216
But that’s a Thruway pickup/drop off spot. I’ve been to one in Dryden NY. It’s a bank parking lot for a drop off and it picks up at a park bench across from the bank. It services the Lake Shore Limited, south of Syracuse. According to the FY stats, it served three people in FY 2018-19, and I may have been one of them. I went to visit my Aunt in Dryden in September.
 

Qapla

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The one in Waldo is at the Amtrak Depot not a parking lot of park bench - like the tile says Waldo is one of the "least used stations" since the station is still owned by Amtrak and the station is where the Amtrak Thruway Bus stops.

As far as train passengers, Waldo has served 0 for many, many years but the building still has power and an Amtrak sign.
 

bms

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Albion really surprises me. Unlike the others, it's not seasonal or in some remote location. It is a college town in a metro area, with daily service stopping at reasonable times. The historic station looked quite nice.
 

tim49424

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Albion really surprises me. Unlike the others, it's not seasonal or in some remote location. It is a college town in a metro area, with daily service stopping at reasonable times. The historic station looked quite nice.
Plus it’s not like Albion is a tiny town, say like Browning or a ghost town like Thurmond. It’s population is nearly 9K and there are several smaller communities served by Amtrak in the state of Michigan, plus some of, if not most of those are not enhanced by colleges. I too, was really surprised Albion was on that list.
 

Bob Dylan

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I will have to say, I may not have seen the Sanderson Station, I can't remember. But when I traveled through that area I marked it on my GPS because I recognized the area type terrain from the Movie Giant and I wanted to see if it was close. The waypoint I marked on my GPS was about 60 miles from Marfa where the movie location was. Sanderson is 95 miles from Marfa. The high plains. Not much going on.
There is No Station in Sanderson. They tore down the old SP Station several years ago.

The " Platform" is a Gravel strip along side the tracks, but there are plans to build a Platform there.

Sanderson used to be a Flag Stop, but now it's a Scheduled ( quickie) stop between Alpine and Del Rio.
 
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