AMTRAK California Zephyr 2

Truckee river Truckee river 2Now our train is running along Truckee river.

It is near the border of California and Nevada. As you see, the east-side of the range is quite dry.

Reno_NevadaWe arrived to Reno….which is the first town in Nevada and also known for casinos. During daytime, this is very quiet….but as you see the buses behind…..people are ready for American dream tonight.

They say “Biggest little city in the world”…….

Landscape of Nevada

After we left Reno, all we see is the great desert.

Landscape of Nevada 2
90% of the land is owned by government in Nevada. Although it is in the middle of desert, you can see the proof of human being everywhere…..

Landscape of Nevada 3

Landscape of Nevada 4

What is the difference compare to frontier time? Motor-vehicles and electricity…….

Landscape of Nevada 5

No matter how far we go, there is no wild animals…..

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Amtrak California Zephyr 1

california zephyr

We left San Francisco by Amtrak Shuttle bus at 6:30m.

Then, we went to Emeryville Station in Oakland which is other side of San Francisco bay.

Amtrak California Zephyr

It is the beginning of Trans Continent Railway “California Zephyr”.

Amtrak California Zephyr 2

At first, train runs by the bay area….then, soon we get into inland.

mtrak California Zephyr 3

We stopped at Sacramento Station. Coast Starlight stops here so, this was my 2nd time.

This old city is the Capital of California which is about 2 hours from San Francisco by train.

mtrak California Zephyr 4

Now, the landscape is quite dry. We are getting into “Old California”.

mtrak California Zephyr 5

Now, the train is getting into Sierra Nevada which was the biggest trouble before pioneers got to California.
mtrak California Zephyr 6

When they first build the Transcontinental railway in 1860s, this mountain range was the biggest trouble too.

Donner lake California

This peaceful lake is today, called Donner lake which is taken by Donner Party.

Donner Party was a big group of pioneers. Due to the several wrong choice of route, their schedule was delayed and delayed….

All after the hard travel in desert, they got to Sierra Nevada in 20 Oct. which was right before snow season comes.

But they decided to go foward…..but soon after, snow season arrived earlier and they could not move anymore. Then, the lake which was called “Truckee lake” those day was the place they decided to have winter camp to wait for spring.

But they did not have enough foods and ended up with cannibalism too.

They started with  87 people and 48 people survived. This is known as the major tragedy of the pioneers today and there is an announcement in the train too.

Truckee California
We arrived to Truckee Station. This area was developed during the Gold rash and when transcontinental railway was completed in 1869.

When Donner party passed by in 1846, there was nothing around here…..

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Amtrak Coast Starlight from LA to San Francisco 2

KICX4661_0087After we left San Luis Obispo Station, our train get into hilly area. This is the train we are on…..not other train. You know how curvy the rail track is……,

KICX4657_0084The landscape is keep changing due to the windy course.

KICX4673_0098I found whenever I take this train, I am taking photos exactly the same places.

KICX4678_0103Those are the landscape we mist last time due to the time difference.

When I was here last time on the way from Seattle, It was already dark around here.

By the time we get to San Francisco, It is already dark. We get off the train at Emeryville station in Oakland, then take a shuttle bus to get to San Francisco.
I would say Coast Starlight has better view when you take from Los Angels rather than taking from Seattle.

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Amtrak Coast Starlight from LA to San Francisco

Amtrak Coast Starlight from LA

After we left Los Angels, the Coast Starlight train runs throught the inland for a while, then after Oxnand, Ca. we get to the wild coast line.

rak Coast Starlight from LA 2

Wild hill and wild pacific ocean….last time, we completely mist this dynamic landscape because it was night time.


It looks like desert……but it is not…….during the winter, it is the time to turn into green.


Everything is old school….well….the car is Buick Park Avenue which was the latest when I first visited US in late 80s…..This is already classic……

Coast Starlignt_San Luis Obispo CA. 1

We are getting to San Luis Obispo Station.  This Classic looking engine is the symbol of American trains.


We had some brake at Sun Luis Obispo Station.
It is one of the oldest town in California which was established in 1772 and also the mid-point between Los Angels and San Francisco.

At this time, we were 2 hours delay….well… usual……

Now, we are a bit away from the coast line and then, we are going to have exciting inland view very soon.

Amtrak Coast Starlignt_2nd day

Amtrak Coast Starlignt 2nd day 1

When we wake up in the morning, the landscape is totally different. During the night, we passed mountains in Oregon and now, we are in California.

Amtrak Sacramento StationEverything is dry…..Now we arrived to Sacramento Station which is the capital of California.
They are re-charging water tank.

Amtrak Coast Starlignt 2nd day  3Most of Amtrak Stations are located in the old area of city. This means quite many of them are in rough environment.
Due to the financial problem, there is not much they can do.
Amtrak Coast Starlignt 2nd day 4California is the land of farming…….huge area of farming land is everywhere and it is the little part of “green” in this dry land.
Amtrak Coast Starlignt 2nd day  5It does look like desert…..but it is all grass. During the winter time, they have some rain and it is the only time California turns into Green!

The sun is getting low……Train is getting delayed…..

We arrived Los Angels at 12:00 AM. Itwas 36 hours of train trip and was also 3 hours delay………

Later, I took the same line from Los Angels to San Francisco and noticed the landscape in Southern California which I missed this time was amazing……

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Amtrak Coast Starlight

Coast StarlightAmtrak is network of Passenger trains in the United States.

Coast Starlight is running along the west coast of the United States starting from Seattle Washington and going to Los Angels.

Amtrak Coast Starlight Seattle
This is taken at King Street Station at Seattle……It is beginning of 30 some hours of long trip… The reason I say 30 some hours is…..this line delays all the time.

At this point, we were already 2 hours delay.

Look at the Yellow step at the door! That is how we get onto the train.
Amtrak Coast Starlignt 2Washington is the State surrounded by water and green. It is a bit like Vancouver.
Amtrak Coast Starlight 3

Water, forests and heavy clouds… around here is changeable.

Amtrak Coast Starlight 5

It is taken at Portland Union Station, Oregon….it is quite common to see this kind of old carts at Amtrak Stations.

Amtrak Coast Starlight 5

We are in Oregon now. The landscape is….about similar here.

Amtrak Coast Starlight 6

We had some rest at Springfield, Oregon. We had the sunset of 1st day here.

After this, no more photos and just relax in the trains.

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Amtrak _ Coast Starlight _Southern California

Our AMTRAK train left Santa Barbara station.

We are still going along the coast line. In the middle of nowhere……there are so many untouched beaches around.

As I remember, I took photos at exactly the same places when I had AMTRAK trip in 2005.
But this time, It was still in winter and after rain, The sly of Southern California was clearer and landscape was greener.

Those were taken before 3:00PM, due to the strong sun, It was not easy to take through window of the train.

By the way, our AMTRAK train was 2 hours delayed. Perhaps it was better for photography….

LEICA Digilux 3