Facebook Page
Sandusky, OH To Chicago, IL On Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited
Fall Amtrak Vacation Trip 2008
Sandusky, OH To Chicago, IL
On Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited
October 27th, 2008
Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited At Chicago Union Station
Monday, October 27th, 2008
Monday, October 27th, 2008:
   Shortly before 4am, I checked out of the hotel and headed for the Amtrak Station via taxi. When I arrived there, a group of 10 Amish people also arrived, they were from Ohio and on their way to Wisconsin for a wedding. I chatted with them as we waited, and waited, and waited some more for Train #49 to arrive. At 4:38 am, Train #48, our Eastbound counterpart arrived in Sandusky. At 6:34am, Train #49 arrived finally in Sandusky, the consist for today’s train is listed below:
Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited - Monday, October 27th, 2008
Car/Engine Type:
Heritage Baggage
Baggage Car (From Boston)
Amfleet II Coach
Coach (From Boston)
Amfleet II Coach
Coach (From Boston) (My Coach)
Amfleet II Café Car
Richmond Club
Cafe/Lounge Car (From Boston)
Amfleet II "Diner-Lite" Car
Dining Car (From New York)
Amfleet II Coach
Coach (From New York)
Amfleet II Coach
Coach (From New York)
Amfleet II Coach
Coach (From New York)
Viewliner Sleeper
Southern View
4910 - Sleeping Car (From New York) (My Sleeper)
Viewliner Sleeper
Sunrise View
4911 - Sleeping Car (From New York)
Viewliner Sleeper
Sylvan View
4912 - Sleeping Car (From New York)
Heritage Baggage
Baggage Car (From New York)

   Amtrak, with the October schedule change, is now breaking up and assembling this train in Albany from 2 sections, one from New York and the other from Boston. This is how things used to be done years ago and thus it eliminates the "stub train" that was running as Train #449 between Boston and Albany. Train #449 is now a part of Train #49 as the Boston Section on the train. One thing that hasn't returned at this time however is a Boston sleeper, as there are still 3 Viewliners on the train in the New York section. I boarded Amfleet II Coach #25017 in the Boston Section and we departed Sandusky at 6:37am. My plan was to ride in coach until Toledo and move to my sleeping car at that time. The ride was relatively uneventful as I listened to my iPod for a bit as we traveled over Sandusky Bay and and headed west towards Toledo. At Toledo, which is a service stop and crew change point for the train, the train would take on water and I would "upgrade" to my sleeper.
   First, here’s why I chose to upgrade now verses Chicago: The eastern and central zone cut-off for Amtrak Guest Rewards is in Toledo. So I figured since it wouldn't cost any more points to do so, I would just go ahead and upgrade in Toledo and get a free breakfast! The train arrived in Toledo at 7:26am. I got off the train and walked down the platform to the sleepers that were on the end of the train (No one seems to know why the sleepers wer on the end of the train, other than it had something to do with the aforementioned change to splitting the train in Albany). I boarded Viewliner #62037, also known as the "4910" car as I had Roomette #1 in this car. Ainsley, my sleeper attendant, told me to go have breakfast and he would get my luggage situated in my room while I ate breakfast. So off to the dining car I went, and had the Railroad French Toast and sausage patties with a Diet Pepsi to drink. The french toast crust was a little hard but overall tasted decent. I was seated with a woman from Toledo who was on her way to Minneapolis. Another couple was also seated at the same table later on and they were headed to Seattle to visit their children. We had made our station stop in Bryan, OH while at breakfast and left there at 8:34am. After breakfast, I walked back and found my room in my Viewliner as my luggage was sitting in the room. The room was set up for day use since the sun already rose. There was a pillow on one of the chairs. After getting situated in the room, I set up my computer and continued writing this travelogue. We departed Waterloo, IN at 9:01am and I then took a nap for just under an hour. We left Elkhart, IN, our next stop at 9:53am. I continued writing this travelogue some more as we arrived in South Bend, IN at 10:10am. A very quick smoking break was permitted but I didn’t get off the train as I was busy writing this travelogue. We left there at 10:13am. I took quite a few pictures of the action as we got closer to Chicago while listening to some "Chicago" music on my iPod among other things. At the Hammond-Whiting, IN Station, we stopped even though that’s not a posted stop along the route of the Lake Shore. It was unclear why we stopped there. Things started to slow down, train speed wise as we got closer to Chicago Union Station. Finally at 11:16am, running 1 hour and 31 minutes late, Train #49 arrived in Chicago Union Station. Because I would be riding out of town today in a Sleeping Car, I had the privilege of visiting the Metropolitan Lounge in Chicago Union Station. This is a lounge for sleeper car passengers only and consists of lots of big chairs, some TV’s, computer terminals for using the internet along with free pop and coffee. I would spend a few minutes in the lounge and was given a pass so I could re-enter it later as I decided to have lunch at McDonald’s in Union Station, then take a walk down to Roosevelt Ave to get in some railfanning...