Waffle House hop off?

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dogbert617

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 19, 2016
Messages
792
I will probably stay on the train. The restaurants near the station don’t thrill me, and as Railiner pointed out, I’ll miss the chance to see the Lakeland-to-Tampa section. You pay all this money for a trip, might as well get everything you can out of it.
Not to sway you one way or another, but remembering how bad the food issue was on the Cardinal(which is similar, only has a cafe car but no dining car), I don't think it'd hurt you if you really wanted to, to see if the Amtrak staff would let you off to get something to eat while the train went over to Tampa, and then back. That all said, the only reason I'd be hesitant to do Waffle House, is how far south it appears to be on google maps, vs. where that station is located. And that, I'd probably just opt to get some food to go from somewhere within a few blocks of that station.

As I'm not sure if you've ridden the Star before, but if you have ridden the Star before and through Tampa, I don't think it'd be a bad idea to get some food in Lakeland. If it were my first time riding this train through Tampa, I'd stay on board to see the scenery, and make sure you bring enough of your own food and snacks(at least food that won't spoil, as there's no guarantee that if you bring a cooler, you'll be able to get ice from the cafe car) on board the train before you leave Miami. Allegedly I've heard from others who've ridden sleeper cars before(though I didn't try to ask this, when I rode #8 east from Glacier National Park to Chicago as I didn't bring a cooler), that sometimes the SCA can provide you with ice if you need it for a cooler. Hopefully others can confirm, if what I supposedly heard was right or not.
 

chrsjrcj

OBS Chief
Joined
Mar 24, 2011
Messages
808
Even that shouldn’t be too big of a deal, as the train wouldn’t be allowed to depart Lakeland until the later departure time at the earliest. Then Amtrak would have to get the new crew members sent to Lakeland, and with how well they’ve been doing that lately it might cause a bit of a delay o_O. The only way around the departure time is a special schedule would have to be issued of which those are normally communicated fairly well by train time.
If the train isn’t going to Tampa, it probably isn’t going to Lakeland either. In those cases, both Lakeland and Tampa passengers/crew have been bused to/from Winter Haven.
 

Qapla

OBS Chief
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Jul 15, 2019
Messages
840
If you have never been on a train that is pushed into a station ... the Tampa leg will give you that opportunity.
 

jiml

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Feb 27, 2019
Messages
901
Wait, there used to be a different section of the Canadian that was connected(disconnected going east, a la Spokane, San Antonio, etc) onto the main consist of the train going west at Winnipeg years ago, that didn't go through Hornepayne, Sioux Lookout, etc? If so, that's news to me. Where did that different section of the Canadian that was combined/removed from the Canadian at Winnipeg, ran to?
Very brief history of modern Canadian (hopefully NS VIA Fan will fill in details I miss):

Phase 1 - Separate sections of CP Canadian from Montreal and Toronto meet in common station (Winnipeg) and are joined together for remainder of trip (think of eastbound California Zephyr with Desert Wind and Pioneer). Meanwhile CN runs own train from Toronto to Vancouver (Super-Continental), also via Winnipeg.
Phase 2 - VIA takes over; discontinues Super-Continental east of Winnipeg, leaving one train each (CP) from Montreal and Toronto to Winnipeg and two trains (one CP, one CN) west of Winnipeg.
Phase 3 - VIA introduces through cars between either route, switched in Winnipeg. The Toronto section would generally arrive well ahead of the Montreal section, with a significant layover in Winnipeg. (era of timetable shown)
Subsequent Phases - back and forth discontinuances of one section or another, leaving us with today's (almost) all-CN routing from Toronto only to Vancouver. (There are several iterations of the train during the intervening period, although most not relevant to this discussion.)
 

drdumont

Service Attendant
AU Supporter
Joined
Apr 16, 2017
Messages
192
Some of the Train crews do this also, but there is a LOT BETTER Q Joint in Taylor,Louie Muellers, and Austin is Full of Good to Great Joints!
Yep, Bob, you have some good points. However, comma, the Cafe is <100 yards from the train stop, I've just left Austin, the food there is great, and I'm I'm on the train going through Taylor, and I'm hungry right then. And usually took some along for later.
 

Qapla

OBS Chief
Joined
Jul 15, 2019
Messages
840
I haven't taken it with me yet ... but, I have one of those "coolers" that can be plugged in and it will keep food either hot or cold

I have wondered how that would work on a LD train.
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
19,428
Yep, Bob, you have some good points. However, comma, the Cafe is <100 yards from the train stop, I've just left Austin, the food there is great, and I'm I'm on the train going through Taylor, and I'm hungry right then. And usually took some along for later.
I totally understand, but since I live in Austin and ride the Eagle often, including day trips to Taylor and Temple, and Love B-B-Q, thought I'd mention the other better options available.( I've eaten @ City Cafe several times and its OK, !)
 

railiner

Conductor
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Messages
7,695
I haven't taken it with me yet ... but, I have one of those "coolers" that can be plugged in and it will keep food either hot or cold

I have wondered how that would work on a LD train.
I don't know for certain, but I would think that such an appliance would draw too much current, and pop a fuse or circuit breaker...I believe those roomette/bedroom outlets are strictly for low current use, like shavers, phone chargers, etc...
They might work in certain other outlets, that are used by coach cleaner's to vacuum the car, perhaps...
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,423
Places you can order food to trains. Use Uber eats, or grubhub and order fifteen to twenty minutes before arrival.

Albany, NY: Lake Shore Limited

Denver, CO

Minot, ND

Albuquerque, NM

San Antonio, TX

Fort Worth, TX

Winnipeg, MB

Jasper, AB

Kamloops, BC

Edmonton, AB

I’m sure others can add to the list.
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
19,428
El Paso,TX

Alpine,TX

Houston,TX

Temple,TX

Taylor,TX

Atlanta,GA

Birmingham,AL

St.Louis,MO

Memphis,TN

Sacramento,CA

Tucson,AZ

Reno,NV

I've seen Food delivered @ all of these Stops!
 
Last edited:

Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,423
The other fun things to do is get groceries delivered to an enroute train. I’ve made use of that on the LSL in the middle of the night.

Had a client who wanted something we didn’t have. I called a friend in Cleveland asked him to get me what I needed. He drove to the station and passed it up. Then I paid him.

Worked like a charm.
 

dogbert617

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 19, 2016
Messages
792
El Paso,TX

Alpine,TX

Houston,TX

Temple,TX

Taylor,TX

Atlanta,GA

Birmingham,AL

St.Louis,MO

Memphis,TN

Sacramento,CA

Tucson,AZ

Reno,NV

I've seen Food delivered @ all of these Stops!
Nice, that you've seen food delivered to all those stops! I now kinda wonder if I should try Grubhub and/or the Uber Eats app, myself?

Other potential stations that have a layover, where you could try using this app at:

Whitefish, MT

Havre, MT

Indianapolis, IN (albeit by this stop on Cardinal, it's early in the morning or late at night. not sure if many will deliver that early or late on Grubhub/Uber Eats)

Spokane, WA (more for #28 riders from Portland which arrive before other 3 trains, and when I searched downtown Spokane via google maps, I've only been able to confirm one place in their downtown serving food that late, Monterey Cafe. not sure if they're on Grubhub or Uber)

Toledo, OH (more for those on #30 going east, where there may be a few places still delivering that late upon getting to TOL)

Meridian, MS

Jacksonville, FL (?, only problem here is that this station doesn't have much nearby, and station location is a little isolated. maybe a few random Grubhub or Uber restaurants, would be willing to deliver over to here?)

Orlando, FL

Pittsburgh, PA (similar problem to Indy and Spokane, that the train only gets there early or late in the evening. but if you're riding Cap or/and(IF you transfer between both trains) Pennsylvanian, it could be a place to try using either app at)

And of course, if one looks at the stickied smoke/stretch stop list thread, you could figure out all such stations that have a long distance train layover at some station.
 

Skyline

OBS Chief
Joined
Feb 19, 2016
Messages
686
Take this tip from a minimalist hiker/backpacker.

Take along a spoon or spork, and dehydrated meal either prepackaged and sealed, or put together at home in a ziploc bag.

Open package or ziploc, pour in water ... hot if available ... reseal. Squish it all up. Rehydrate well. Open package, stir, eat.

Certain Mountain House and Packit Gourmet brand meals work well hot OR cold. I make my own with a base of flavored Far East cous cous, spiced to taste, dehydrated veggies, and a small packet of protein if desired like Chicken Creations added at the end.

Sure beats the other options when you're stuck and hungry (hangry?).
 

drdumont

Service Attendant
AU Supporter
Joined
Apr 16, 2017
Messages
192
Not to sway you one way or another, but remembering how bad the food issue was on the Cardinal(which is similar, only has a cafe car but no dining car), I don't think it'd hurt you if you really wanted to, to see if the Amtrak staff would let you off to get something to eat while the train went over to Tampa, and then back. That all said, the only reason I'd be hesitant to do Waffle House, is how far south it appears to be on google maps, vs. where that station is located. And that, I'd probably just opt to get some food to go from somewhere within a few blocks of that station.

As I'm not sure if you've ridden the Star before, but if you have ridden the Star before and through Tampa, I don't think it'd be a bad idea to get some food in Lakeland. If it were my first time riding this train through Tampa, I'd stay on board to see the scenery, and make sure you bring enough of your own food and snacks(at least food that won't spoil, as there's no guarantee that if you bring a cooler, you'll be able to get ice from the cafe car) on board the train before you leave Miami. Allegedly I've heard from others who've ridden sleeper cars before(though I didn't try to ask this, when I rode #8 east from Glacier National Park to Chicago as I didn't bring a cooler), that sometimes the SCA can provide you with ice if you need it for a cooler. Hopefully others can confirm, if what I supposedly heard was right or not.
Get yourself one of those little coolers with the Peltier chips in them. It plugs into the wall, and will keep cool or warm what you have in the box. No ice is needed, and it is quite handy for medicines, etc. which need to be kept cool. Mind you, it won't take room temp food and cool or heat it, but will take chilled or warm stuff and help keep it thus.
 

dogbert617

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 19, 2016
Messages
792
Get yourself one of those little coolers with the Peltier chips in them. It plugs into the wall, and will keep cool or warm what you have in the box. No ice is needed, and it is quite handy for medicines, etc. which need to be kept cool. Mind you, it won't take room temp food and cool or heat it, but will take chilled or warm stuff and help keep it thus.
That is an interesting idea, to consider for a future Amtrak trip. Considering there is no guarantee, you can get ice aboard an Amtrak train.

Also, I did think of one more station to theoretically check if Grubhub and/or Uber Eats would deliver to, to expand on the suggestion of Sacramento: Klamath Falls. Not sure if a lot of places would be open if you were traveling north on Starlight train #14, but going south on train #11, the train sometimes gets in there a little before 9:50pm, ending up with a slightly longer layover time than just 10 minutes. From juckins: https://juckins.net/amtrak_status/archive/html/historychart.php?train_num=11&station=kfs&date_start=01/01/2018&date_end=08/18/2019&sort=d_ar&chartsize=2&smooth=0

And for that route, I suspect in Eugene, OR(as that's also a smoke/stretch stop), you may be able to find Grubhub and/or Uber Eats places there as well.
 

RebelRider

Train Attendant
Joined
Aug 20, 2018
Messages
57
Before hopping off at Lakeland, make sure there isn't some sort of problem which forces the Star to skip going to Tampa.

jb
Aside from the infinitesimally small chance of a detour up the S-Line skipping everything from Tampa to Palatka, if the Star is doing a Tampa bypass, it's not going to Lakeland either.
 

IndyLions

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 6, 2016
Messages
317
Nothing worse than being sick away from home....hope you are better or at least getting close...
 
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