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A Pacific Sands Private Car Weekend in San Diego 11/17-18/2007

A Private Car Hotel in San Diego

by Chris Guenzler

I was up early and headed over to Albertson to get some over the counter relief for the head cold I had come down with. Back home, I took the stuff before packing for this weekend on the Pacific Sands down in San Diego. I drove down to the Santa Ana Train Station and made my way to Track 1 to wait for Surfliner 763. It was running 30 minutes late and as I sat there I started to feel better and ready for this trip to begin. Surfliner 763 rolled into Santa Ana thirty minutes late to take me north to Fullerton. The train stopped in Anaheim before it waited at Fullerton Jct for a Metrolink southbound weekend Orange County Line Train. Once on the move again, our train stopped at the south platform in Fullerton and I detrained. A few minutes later here came Carole Walker and Arnold James who would be joining me for this weekend trip to San Diego aboard the Pacific Sands. Surfliner 566 pulled into Fullerton and soon the three of us were aboard the Pacific Sands after being greeted by Doug Spinn. I was assigned Roomette 8 for the weekend and soon we were underway for San Diego.

I plugged in my computer placing it atop the commode and put on "Shanghai Knights" for the trip down to San Diego.

It is always funny to me not getting on a train at Santa Ana whenever I pass through it on a train.

Carole Walker, my excellent travel agent who runs Belle Vista Travel was also aboard the car for the weekend. The Surfliner 566 then stopped at Irvine and San Juan Capistrano.

I took a break from my movie as the Pacific Sands ran along the Pacific Surf at San Clemente.

Our next stop was Oceanside.

Later our train climbed Miramar Hill before descending Rose Canyon and into San Diego. We arrived on time and I detrained before the car was spotted and went inside the San Diego Station to call Lets Talk Trains, the Internet Radio Show Saturday mornings 10-12 AM Pacific Tine or 24/7 in the archives. I returned to the train and still not feeling well I checked my e-mail via the wireless I could pick up in the Pacific Sands. Everyone else basically took off and I enjoyed the quiet of the Pacific Sands. I did some Sudoku puzzles before I ventured outside for some pictures. The car is kept locked in San Diego as some people think it is a museum and will climb aboard. Doug Spinn gives out keys so all of us can come and go as we please while we are aboard the Pacific Sands.

Before I went outside, the view from my Roomette 8 in the Pacific Sands at San Diego. I then headed outside for some more pictures.

The Pacific Sands in San Diego.

The view from the Pacific Sands looking south.

My Roomette 8.

One of the Bedrooms in the Pacific Sands.

The view from the Pacific Sands looking north.

Hallway by the Roomettes.

Hallway by the Bedrooms.

The self service snack area and Bar of the Pacific Sands.

Galley of the Pacific Sands.

Later a Coaster Train pulled into the Santa Fe Station in San Diego. Arnold James stopped by for a visit and we talked trains with me showing him things on my web site. About Three PM we walked over to Horton Plaza and at the Sam Goodys bought Asia "Fantasia". I then walked over to the San Diego Trolley and took the Blue Line down to Bayfront Street in Chula Vista. There I went to the Black Angus and had a steak dinner which really hit the spot. I returned to the Pacific Sands and watched Asia "Fantasia" DVD before checking things on the Internet. Once it was completely dark I ventured outside for a few more pictures.

Surfliner 591 which would take us all home tomorrow night.

The Pacific Sands on a Saturday night in San Diego. I went back aboard and watched more of Asia before I knew there would be two Amtrak trains in the San Diego station at once.

Surfliner 582 which would become Surfliner 595 at 8:20 PM.

Another view of the Pacific Sands.

About 8 PM Surfliner 784 pulled into San Diego and later would become the last northbound of the night on weekend, Surfliner 597. Carol returned and so I showed her the rare video footage of my Million Mile Rail Trip last April. When we were done, we called it a night as I put down my bed in my room. As I put my head down a southbound BNSF auto train went by as I soon fell into a deep restful sleep.

11/18/2007 I woke up at 6:30 AM and got dressed as I had a 7:05 AM Surfliner 565 to take to Los Angeles. Once aboard I watched Pirates of the Caribbean "Dead Man's Chest" which lasted almost all the way to Los Angeles. I did Sudoku puzzles before I returned south on Surfliner 572 as I watched the Queen DVD "Live at the Bowl". I returned to the Pacific Sands to check e-mail before I took the Trolley back down to the Black Angus where I had a Filet Mignon and Ice Cream with hot fudge. I returned to the Pacific Sands and relaxed until our departure time neared.

We were waiting to be picked up by Surfliner 591 which had just arrived as Surfliner 580.

The train crew from 591 ready to couple us to their train.

A Safety Stop was made before they coupled up to us.

They then coupled up before they did the stretch to make sure we were attached.

Rear marker lights are on and we would be departing on time in a few minutes.

The train departed the San Diego Station aboard the rear of Surfliner 591.

After our stop in Old Town we headed north. I showed Carol some of the Blackmore Night "Castles and Dreams" DVD as we enjoyed Cheese Cake. Later I showed her some of the Asia where they played pieces from the band members past. What was the first song ever played on MTV? It was the Buggles "Video Killed the Radio Star" so Geoff Downes picked that song to play live from his past. We talked with Doug Spinn before we enjoyed the vestibule at San Juan Capistrano and Irvine. All too soon, we were rounding that curve arriving back into Santa Ana where I would detrain.

I thanked Doug for the excellent trip before I made my way across that bridge then headed home.

For information on the Pacific Sands contact Doug Spinn at Pullman Adventure at 888-610-1950 or click the link below.

Pullman Adventures