Posts Tagged ‘California Zephyr’

4 Amtrak LD Trains to Resume Daily Service

April 20, 2022

Amtrak will restore daily operation to four long-distance trains the week of May 23, Trains magazine reported Tuesday.

Resuming daily operation will be the Chicago-New York/Boston Lake Shore Limited, the Chicago-Los Angeles Southwest Chief, the Chicago-Seattle/Portland Empire Builder, and the Chicago-San Francisco Bay California Zephyr.

Starting May 2 Amtrak will end a joint equipment sharing plan involving the Chicago-Washington Capitol Limited and the Chicago-San Antonio Texas Chief.

Consequently, the Texas Chief will resort to its previous schedule because there will no longer be a need for a long layover in St. Louis to inspect the equipment.

However, Trains reported, the New York-Miami Silver Meteor will remain suspended through Sept. 11. The Chicago-New Orleans City of New Orleans and the New York-New Orleans Crescent also will remain five-day-a-week trains for now.

The Chicago-New York Cardinal will get a marginal boost in capacity when unused sleeping car accommodations in a crew car will begin being sold to the public.

Those accommodations are in a dorm-baggage car that runs on the rear of the train.

The southbound Chicago to Carbondale, Illinois, Saluki, and northbound Carbondale to Chicago Illini will remain suspended through Sept. 11. Both trains were suspended in late January.

The Trains report cited a planning document that it obtained.

That document also indicated there will be additional trains added in the Northeast Corridor.

The document said some train consists are being adjusted to account for lower than expected passenger car availability and continued onboard service worker shortages.

In a statement provided to the magazine, Amtrak acknowledged the additional services and cited increased demand for business and leisure travel.

To read the article visit https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews/news-wire/amtrak-to-restore-four-long-distance-trains-to-daily-service-in-late-may/

Racing West on the Raceway

February 14, 2022

Amtrak’s westbound California Zephyr is less than 20 miles into its trek to the San Francisco Bay area as it races through Riverside, Illinois. This former Chicago, Burlington & Quincy route is known between Chicago and Aurora as the raceway because trains race along. Aside from eight Amtrak trains a day that includes Metra commuter trains as far as Aurora. The image was made on May 23, 2013.

Holdrege Station Waiting Room Closed

February 2, 2022

In a service advisory Amtrak said the effective Feb. 1 the station in Holdrege, Nebraska, is closed although trains will continue to stop there.

Passengers will continue to have access to boarding platforms and free parking with no time limits will be available in a city-owned lot north of the station.

The lot can be reached from Third Avenue with an entrance west of East Avenue.

There will be no access to a waiting room or restrooms at the station site.

Holdrege is service by the California Zephyr operating between Chicago and Emeryville, California.

Mudslides Block California Zephyr Route

August 3, 2021

Amtrak’s California Zephyr was suspended last weekend on part of its route due to mudslides in Glenwood Canyon near Glenwood, Colorado.

The mudslides also blocked adjacent Interstate 70, which precluded Amtrak from providing alternative transportation between Denver and Grand Junction, Colorado.

Trains already en route on Friday, Saturday and Sunday turned back at Denver and Grand Junction.

Passengers were given the option of returning to point of origin or waiting for the line to reopen.

Those who had not yet departed on their trip were offered assistance with rebooking their trip or receiving a refund of their fare.

A spokeswoman for host railroad Union Pacific said mudslides blocked tracks at 10 locations.

She said workers hoped to get the line open by early Monday but said that was contingent on weather conditions.

An Amtrak spokeswoman said Amtrak considered rerouting Nos. 5 and 6 through Wyoming but was unable to arrange that.

Passengers aboard trains departing on Sunday from Chicago and Emeryville, California, were told their train might not be able to pass through Glenwood Canyon on Monday.

Amtrak Tweeted early Tuesday morning that Train No. 5 was back on the move but running five hours, 35 minutes late due to earlier track closures between Denver and Grand Junction.

Amtrak ‘Day One’ Charger Heading East

July 19, 2021

Amtrak’s Day One tribute locomotive is making its way east from the Siemens factory in California.

ALC-42 No. 301 was in the motive power consist of the California Zephyr that left Emeryville, California, on Saturday.

That train was to arrive in Chicago on Monday afternoon but mechanic issues en route had it running more than seven hours late.

No. 301 is expected to leave Chicago on the Capitol Limited on Tuesday evening en route to Washington and eventually an Amtrak shop in Delaware.

The unit wears the one-off livery applied to a Penn Central E8A 4316 for a May 1, 1971, ceremony to mark the inauguration of Amtrak.

Amtrak has ordered 75 ALC-42s from Siemens to replace the GE-built P42DCs and P40s now pulling long-distance and certain corridor trains.

The Day One design is one of several liveries Amtrak created to mark its 50th anniversary.

Thus far only the Midnight Blue scheme applied to P42DC No. 100 is in revenue service. That locomotive has made several trips on the Lake Shore Limited in the past couple weeks.

One other ALC-42 has been accepted by Amtrak and is being tested.

Amtrak to Receive First ACL-42

June 12, 2021

The first Siemens ALC-42 locomotive built for Amtrak is expected to be released today and will head east on the California Zephyr.

Trains magazine quoted unnamed sources as saying Charger No. 300 will be handled by Train 6 departing Emeryville, California, today (June 12) and arriving in Chicago on Monday.

No. 300 is expected to be featured on Tuesday at a media event at the Amtrak Chicago maintenance facility and depart on June 16 for Washington in the motive power consist of the Capitol Limited.

The Trains report said Amtrak expects to receive a handful of Chargers over the next few weeks that will be tested.

Regular deliveries of the locomotive are expected to begin in the second half of this year. Amtrak has ordered 75 ACLC-42 locomotives for use in its national network.

They will replace aging P42DC units that have been the standard motive power on most national network trains since the middle 1990s.

Charger locomotives are already in revenue service for various operators around the country, including on Amtrak corridor routes in the Midwest.

The intercity carrier is expected to complete receiving its ALC-42 locomotives in 2024.

Parking Changes Made at Holdrege Station

April 15, 2021

Construction at the Amtrak station in Holdrege, Nebraska, has resulted in changes in parking.

Workers have completed rebuilding an interim accessible platform in Holdrege but passengers boarding trains there will need to park in the city parking lot north of the train station.

The lot can be accessed from 3rd Avenue with an entrance west of East Avenue. The lot is free and has no time limit.

Holdrege is served by Amtrak’s Chicago-San Francisco Bay California Zephyr.

Bill Introduced to Create Front Range District

April 15, 2021

A bi-partisan bill has been introduced in the Colorado state senate to establish the Front Range Passenger Rail District.

The district would plan, build, operate and maintain passenger service connecting the major cities along the east side of the Rocky Mountains as well as provide a connection service to Amtrak’s Southwest Chief and California Zephyr.

Senate President Leroy Garcia, one of the sponsors of the legislation, said in a statement that establishing rail passenger service along the Front Range has been a top priority of his since being elected to the legislature.

The legislation calls for cooperation with the Denver-area Regional Transportation District and says that if appropriate the two agencies should share capital costs on a portion of the route. District members would be appointed by April 1, 2022, with the first meeting the following month.

California Zephyr Hits Boulder in Utah

June 8, 2020

The westbound California Zephyr hit a boulder on Saturday night in Utah, delaying the train for more than 17 hours.

The incident occurred at 9:55 p.m. MDT. The stranded passengers were taken by the eastbound Zephyr to Helper, Utah, where they were placed aboard buses to continue their trip.

News reports indicated that No. 6 also was delayed due to debris on the tracks of host railroad Union Pacific.

On Sunday night No. 6 was reported to be running nearly 13 hours late.  On Monday morning No. 6 was projected by Amtrak to arrive into Chicago at 2:27 a.m. CDT.

CZ Detouring Due to Flooding in Iowa

March 22, 2019

Flooding along its regular route has led to the California Zephyr having to detour over the former Chicago & North Western mainline in Iowa.

The detour began on March 21 between Chicago and Omaha, Nebraska, on a route owned by Union Pacific.

The train’s normal route on BNSF between those two cities is closed due to flooding in western Iowa.

There is no alternative service being offered to the intermediate stations in Iowa of Burlington, Mount Pleasant, Ottumwa, Osceola and Creston.

It is unclear how long the detour will last. Amtrak has used this route in past years when the normal route was closed.

No stops are being made at intermediate cities between Chicago and Omaha.

UP crews are serving as pilots for the Amtrak trains and locomotives equipped with an automatic train control system are expected to be assigned to Nos. 5 and 6.

The Zephyr will be departing from the north side of Chicago Union Station and switching from Metra to UP tracks at Western Avenue.