The ride from Whitefish to St. Paul-Minneapolis was my first long-distance trip via Amtrak. Here are my thoughts on this train ride:
- The train ride was supposed to be roughly 23 hours in length, but ended up being more than 27. The train was an hour late arriving into Whitefish. Apparently a major portion of the delay was earned from some "track issues" overnight.
- It's quite difficult to sit still on a train for 27 hours when you've spent the last two weeks sitting on a saddle, continuously moving your legs hour-after-hour.
- It's also quite difficult to sit on a train for so long when you're really looking forward to seeing someone at the destination.
- The ride has been a great chance to catch up on sleep, emails, etc.
- This is the first time I've used my iPod on this trip. I've preferred listening rather than reading. I suppose that's because the background voices of other riders can be distracting.
- I've found that Bon Iver provides a better soundtrack over Max Richter for gazing out the window as the scenery goes by.
- The Observation Car is great! I'm surprised the seats aren't packed.
- The coach seat space is far roomier than the seats on planes.
- It's somewhat tricky to get comfortable for a night of sleep in the coach seats. I found a somewhat decent position; get into a super-tight fetal position, with my head on the headrest and the rest of my body curled up on the seat and leg rests.
- I wish that Amtrak would plant some bushes on the train rather than having us use those tight, pee-sprayed restrooms.
- Train travel is economical, especially when it comes to transporting a bike.
- Train travel is great, if you've got the time. If I was working, I'd still prefer to fly.
|The Observation Car.|
|The Traveling Pedal Wrench in Minnesota.|
Jake met me at the train station. We put my bike together, and then headed over to Jake's relative's house in St. Paul.
Jake's relatives live about five miles from the Amtrak station. Teleen is Jake's cousin. She is married to Marshall, and they have two adorable girls, Calla and Carenna. These folks are the second coolest relatives (only behind my relatives)!
|Carenna, Calla, Teleen, Jake, Marshall, and Izzy.|
In the afternoon, Teleen's parents and Teleen's brother's family came over for a barbecue. Oh my, the food was delish! Amazing walnut burgers, fantastic veggie beans, and the most amazing corn that melted in my mouth!
Carenna was super sweet to let me stay in her sunny bright room.
Yeah for awesome relatives!