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First Night on the Train & Salt Lake City Links

Do to the limited internet access on a moving train and the busy schedule of the trip – I feel behind on the blog post.  I’m back in Pittsburgh now, and much more rested.  I am going to keep blogging about the trip – I’ve got lots of photos, stories and links to share.

It takes about 18 hours to get from Emeryville, CA to Salt Lake City, UT.


Here is a great photo of the sun starting to set that was taken by Shawn Kolodziej, who is from Minnesota.  His project is about financial literacy across the US.  You can read about Shawn’s project here.

Photo Credit: Shawn Kolodziej

Train Tracks Photo Credit: Shawn Kolodziej

Friday, August 9th was out first night spent on the train – and it was totally fine.  The beds fold down from the walls and were more than comfortable (and I was more than tired and happy to see a bed).

Here is a photo that my fellow passenger, Cameron, took from her bed.   (I tried to take a few of my cabin but it is hard to photograph a small space).


For some more great photos of the train – check out this post from the HotelTonight blog.  HotelTonight was a sponsor of the trip and sent a representative to join us for a few days on the train.

Salt Lake City

MTP-salt-flats-utahOur itinerary was supposed to include a stop in Salt Lake City, but due to some train logistics, the train was not able to stay in the rail-yard.  Some of my fellow passengers got off the train in Salt Lake City during the stop to spend the day in Salt Lake City working on their projects and then they took a flight to Denver to meet up with the train later in the day.

My fellow passengers made some interesting stops in Salt Lake City and I wanted to share the some links:

You can read and see lots more photos from Day 2 and Salt Lake City on the Millennial Trains Project blog here.

I spent Saturday, August 10th on the train enjoying the incredible scenery from Salt Lake City to Denver – my next post will have a lot of photos of the scenery from the train ride.

Why a cross-country train trip and what does that have to do with Pittsburgh

A United Airlines Boeing 757, very early in th...

An update from the plane portion of the trip. I’m going to do my best to post regular updates about this trip here on the blog.  I started writing this post on my plane ride to California.  I thought a good first post might be to explain why I want to participate in a cross-country train trip. I’ll be posting updates about the trip here on this blog and on the United States of Pittsburgh Facebook Page and on Twitter @USofPGH.

If you are a regular reader of the IheartPGH twitter feed you know that I often post about transit in Western PA.
I think my interest in train travel is two-fold:
  • a fascination of the history of travel around this country before the car and
  • the need to find ways to move around this country that don’t involve putting more cars on the road.
Here is what I’m going to be looking at during this trip:
  • transit and trains – how do people get from here to there
  • Pittsburgh People around the United States – I’ll be stopping in each of the cities and visiting businesses owned by Pittsbughers
  • community places and spaces – in each of the cities where the train stops we will be working out of a hub.
A month ago I was driving back from Buffalo, NY to Pittsburgh.  And I was thinking how nice it would be to be able to take a train from Pittsburgh to Erie, spend the day at the beach and take a train back later that evening.
Last week the Urban Hike group took a walking tour of West View.  West View had a large amusement park and was located on a trolley line.  The trolley line is gone and the amusement park is now a stripmall and a k-mart.
I think transit in the city of Pittsburgh and Allegheny county is important and we need to spend more time talking about transit and sharing ideas.  We have had some success and are seeing more transit oriented development.  (we’ve still got to work on a better way to get to the Pittsburgh airport).  I am also really interested in transit, both planes and trains, to and from Pittsburgh. I am interested in what can be learned from the past and what can we learn from other cities about transportation.