California Zephyr to Resume Operating to Chicago

The California Zephyr will return to its normal route between Chicago and Denver next week, but will bypass the Omaha, Nebraska, station through late April.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said that trips originating March 30 from Emeryville, California, and on April 1 from Chicago use most of the normal route east of Denver.

Nos. 5 and 6 will detour in Omaha because the regular route over the Platte River was destroyed by flooding and is not expected to be rebuilt and reopened for several weeks.

Plans are for the Zephyr to detour between Ashland and Oreapolis, Nebraska.

Omaha passengers will be transported on chartered buses between Omaha and the Amtrak station in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Amtrak is working to create a bus connection between Omaha and Creston, Iowa, for eastbound passengers starting their journey in Omaha.

However, in the meantime, Omaha passengers traveling eastbound on No. 6 will have to leave at 2 a.m. to travel to Lincoln to catch their train.

The scheduled Omaha departure time of No. 6 is 5:14 a.m.

The rail travel time between Lincoln and Creston is shorter than the normal route via the Omaha station so No. 6 will be held in Creston until its scheduled 7:04 departure time if it is operating on time.

The California Zephyr detoured for a week between Chicago and Omaha on a former Chicago & North Western route, but that was ended in favor of Denver-Emeryville operation due to chronic lateness and equipment issues.

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