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The Downeaster Trip Brunswick to Portland 6/25/2015

by Chris Guenzler

I had planned to do this trip for years since the Downeaster service had been extended from Portland to Brunswick, but had not been back here since that happened. I decided early in planning the post-convention part of this trip to ride this segment. After all, I want to say that I have ridden the complete Amtrak system and this would be the first trip of three to complete my goal. The other two are Springfield to Brattleboro on the old Boston and Maine line that was restored in December 2014 and then Norfolk to Petersburg in Virginia on my way home. Once those trips were complete, I would be able to say once again "I have ridden the entire Amtrak system!" But let us not get ahead of ourselves; I first had to make this trip. Robin and I checked out of the Best Western Freeport and drove north to Brunswick back to the Amtrak station we visited yesterday. A stop at McDonald's provided my usual hot cakes and sausage breakfast. Upon arriving, a look south down the tracks gave us an unexpected picture chance. We parked the rental car and I gave the keys to Robin who would meet me in Portland.

The Maine Eastern passenger train set was in Brunswick this morning.

Maine Eastern FL9 488, ex. Amtrak 239, exx. Penn Central 5016, nee New York, New Haven and Hartford 2016 built by Electro-Motive Division in 1957. With that done, we walked up to the platform to wait for my train to Portland.

The Brunswick station platform on a beautiful Maine morning.

The Amtrak station area in Brunswick and the map of the Downeaster.

The train arrived and the engine would be pushing it to Portland this morning. I boarded the train and took a left0hand big window seat. We departed on time and I started rolling down one of the last three new pieces of track I needed to once again complete the entire Amtrak system. With all the trees in the area, it was hard to take any pictures on this trip. The train made the stop in Freeport and headed south towards Portland.

We finally broke out of the trees and gave me a view of a Maine farm.

Going by the Saco River as it neared Portland. Once we arrived at the junction with the Amtrak Portland station lead, my new mileage was over and the train reversed into the Portland Amtrak station, ending a fantastic trip south on Amtrak Downeaster train 682.

As I detrained, I took one final picture of the train that helped me get towards my goal. I walked through the very busy station and found Robin waiting for me. We left here and headed to the Portland Waterfront to the next stop of our trip in New England.