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Live Trip Updates from the Amtrak Southwest Chief / Mini-Travelogue

Amtrak from Los Angeles to Santa Fe, NM on-board the Southwest Chief and Return....

Train #3/4

Page By Anton L.

Photography by Chris Parker

It's been about 3 years now since I have written a full travelogue, so I think it's time I do something! I use to ride Amtrak long distance at least twice a year and I actually have not embarked on an LD train in about a year and a half now!

This page will reflect my trip departing Los Angeles on August 12, 2009 to Santa Fe, NM (via Lamy) on Amtrak train #4. Unfortunately I will only be able to update it with photos and limited writing due to being on the train, etc.



Wednesday, August 12, 2009:

6:45PM - Left Los Angeles Union Station ON TIME (shocking) and now in Redondo Jct. heading towards Fullerton....

...No dinner reservations yet...


6:57PM - Train is STOPPED somewhere near the yard and there is a very nasty air leak sound coming from the bottom of our sleeping car!

Uh oh...


7:09PM - Moving again, Dinner at 8:00PM.... More photos at Fullerton.


7:30PM - Arrived in Fullerton....A bit late now, but things should be moving along. The Chief is great for running on time unlike the Starlight.

We're in Sleeping Car #31 which is a pretty nicely refurbished car, and the train seems to be in pretty good condition regardless of an old Coach with Phase IV paint.


I'll put up some AmFood photos after dinner!

9:06PM -

Dinner was the Beef dish which was not steak, but some kind of braised meat called "flat iron" but not the traditional Amtrak steak. It was flavored well though, and very good! We're now running about on-time..








Thursday, August 13, 2009:

9:30AM (now MST) -

Our next stop will be Albuquerque, NM.... We've stopped in Winslow, AZ and Gallup, NM this morning. Enjoy these photos of breakfast and the station.





Breakfast wasn't bad... but far from the best Amtrak breakfast I've ever had.

Somewhere in New Mexico.... info on this car?


12:30PM - We're about to leave ABQ. Here are some snapshots of the area. Lunch in 30 minutes.. this will probably be the last update from the train.




Lunch...Pretty good.


Arrival in Lamy / Santa Fe, NM....

Here are some photos from today arriving in Lamy, etc.

The Lamy station is quite an interesting building, and I was surprised to see how truly small Lamy is as it only has 2 restaurants and an Amtrak station.






Friday, August 14, 2009:


Today we visited a Bandelier National Park as well as saw #3 and #4 arrive in Lamy. Tomorrow we will be riding the SFSR to Lamy to connect to #3 back to L.A.....



The park had some very fascinating Native American writing on the rocks, and the views were incredible.


Saturday, August 15, 2009:

Below are some photos of our trip today from Santa Fe to Lamy on the Santa Fe Southern Railway as well as #4 and #3 (our train) arriving in Lamy.

We're now on-board #3 heading to ABQ. I'll update this page again tonight after ABQ, Dinner, Flagstaff, Williams, etc.


Preparing for boarding, and yours truly.


The SFSR trains have a great outdoor car.


A very interesting home.


Turning the engine around for the trip back to Santa Fe as we detrained in Lamy.


All Aboard!



8:07PM - Last update on the train... Just had dinner, same menu items, etc. We are running a few minutes late but I'm sure we'll still be early into Los Angeles.

Here are some final photos from this part of the trip...





Not bad! I wish I had taken a photo of the Dessert though... not too good, but this steak was.




We arrived into Los Angeles about one hour early around 7:15AM. The trip was overall very good. I only wish Amtrak would refurbish more of their Sleeping Cars as well as bring back meals that are cooked on-board. I look forward to eventually riding the Empire Builder which is suppose to be entirely refurbished equipment, as well as fresh cooked meals.

I hope you enjoyed the updates to this page live from the train and I'll see you again Amtrak!



Page was Last Updated 9:03AM - PST. 8/16/2009