I hope you have all had a fantastic Holiday Season this 2006 and that each of you has a very special 2007. May all your dreams in life come true and I thank each of you for your friendship and love you have shown me in 2006.
First, the Guenzler Family news: My mother is alive and well having a great year of traveling and doing all her hobbies. My brother Bruce has beat Colon Cancer and is back to work in Sacramento for Amtrak. Everyone else in our family is doing very well and should continue to do so in 2007.Next the Chris Guenzler yearly update:
2006 started with me having 908,201.9 rail miles. A February trip to San Diego to ride their entire Light Rail System was followed the next day by going to Los Angeles Union Station to see the Santa Fe 4-8-4 Steam Locomotive. The next weekend I got the chance to hear Michael Dukakis speak about the state of passenger trains in the USA. It was fascinating. In March I went to what became the coldest Winterail in Stockton ever. The next weekend I was in Fillmore, CA for the first train in years to Piru. April 1st I was on the Feather River Express up the Feather River Canyon Emeryville to Portola. This was a fantastic trip. Jim Novell took me to see the Pacific Railroad Society San Dimas and the PRS Yard. The big spring trip was next with a Southwest Chief To Chicago, Capitol Limited to DC and a Northeast Corridor Train to Philadelphia. I finished up most of SEPTA, rode PATCO, shot trains at Princeton Jct and rode the shuttle to the University. In New York City I rode PATH to Hoboken to ride the Bergen Light Rail before seeing the New York Mets play the Atlanta Braves with the worst and most rude fans in any major league park that I had yet visited. I returned on the Cardinal and Southwest Chief. I took the Coast Starlight for my final steak on Amtrak? Metrolink started new Saturday weekend Orange County Service on 6/03/06. Next I flew to Portland for some rare mileage trips by the Southern Appalachia Railroad Museum. We did the Port of Tillamook Railroad from Banks to Tillamook, a Steam Photo Charter on the Chehalis-Centralia Railroad and a Steam Charter on the Tacoma Rail from Morton to Tacoma. The next day I had a train run for me at the Camp 6 Logging Museum in Tacoma. The next day we caught the SP 4449 heading to Sherwood for a car show, rode the SP&S 700 in Oaks Park, did some speeder rides there and rode the Willamette Shore Trolley. The last of these trips was a return to the Hood River Railroad where we got a cab ride on the return trip. Back at home Metrolink had started Midday Inland Empire Service and that was followed by the new Metrolink Sunday Service on the Orange County Line. Next in July it was time to head to the NRHS Convention in New Philadelphia, Ohio. I took the Southwest Chief and Capitol Limited to Pittsburgh meeting Chris Parker there. We drove to Cumberland to ride the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad and a trip to Sand Patch Summit. The next day we did the Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad and we saw plenty of Bald Eagles. Later that day I made my first trip on the ground to the Horseshoe Curve. What a place! The following day we did the East Broad Top and the Rockhill Trolley. Both of these were incredible. We went back to the Horseshoe Curve before staying for a night at the Tunnel Inn, a fantastic bed and breakfast location. A trip to the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum was the last thing we did before we drove to New Philadelphia, Ohio for the 2006 NRHS Convention. Trip 1 was Dennison to the Gould Tunnel complete with a Photo Freight. Trip 2 was the Cuyahoga Classic plus a trip at the Minerva Steam Railroad Museum. Trip 3 was the Cincinnati Limited from Dennison to Newark. The off day we drove to The Mad River and NKP Museum in Bellevue, Ohio followed by a brief visit to the Warthers Carving Museum, fantastic, before attending the NRHS Banquet. Trip 4 started with a tour of the Morgan Run Shops before we boarded the Buckeye Circle Trip. Special thanks to the Ohio Central and Wheeling and Lake Erie Railroads for hosting the convention trips. I returned home via Altoona then Capitol Limited and Southwest Chief. On August 29th, 2006 I passed my 950,000.0 rail mile aboard the last Great Dome on Amtrak. In September I flew to Portland to finally ride behind the SP 4449 from Portland to Bend east up the Colombia River Gorge then up the Deschutes River Canyon. A true dream come true! Late October found me on the Southwest Chief to Trinidad, CO then a JJ Motors rental car to the Pueblo Railway Museum, Pikes Peak Historic Street Railway and the Manitou and Pikes Peak Railway. We only made it to just above Windy Point but what a great clear day it was after the blizzard the day before. I was in Colorado for more rare mileage trips by the Southern Appalachia Railway Museum. We did the San Luis and Rio Grande Railroad on Saturday and San Luis Central on Sunday. Great trips on both railroads. After that last trip we visited Great Sand Dunes National Park before doing some ghost railroading finding the remains of the San Luis Southern Railroad in Blanca, CO. Home was on the Southwest Chief. November was busy with a trip to Sacramento for the 18th Annual Trainmaster Dinner and a trip to Tustin to see the 2006 Metrolink Holiday Toy Train. In early December we had the Trainweb.com 10 year birthday bash before I went to La Plata. MO for the Grand Opening of the Trainweb. com new offices there. La Plata will soon be the home of a rail resort.
Concerts this fine year saw me seeing Aerosmith at the Pond of Anaheim om Febraury 24th, and on September 29th saw my friend Leonard as the drummer in Brain Salad, an ELP Tribute Band at the Galaxy Theater.
While the rail mileage is most important to some people, for me it is my number of days of sobriety which is most important. This year waseasy to keep track off. On my 48th Birthday I was on Day 4000. So January 1st was Day 4001 and December 31st, 2006, my 49th Birthday was Day 4365. Funny how these numbers sometime works out!
So all in all it was an excellent 2006 and next year I would pass the big 1,000,000.0 rail mile, God willing and if the creeks don't raise!
Best Wishes, Chris Day 4368