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Chris Guenzler's 1,500,000 Miles of Rail Travel Celebration 9/9/2017

Chris Guenzler's 1,500,000 Miles of Rail Travel Celebration

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Photos and Report by Carl Morrison,  -- IMG_8454MeChrisTrip-2.JPG


Reaching this 1.5-million-miles-on-the-rails milestone by Chris Guenzler of Santa Ana, California, was celebrated with some close rail friends on a Pacific Surfliner excursion from Santa Ana to Solana Beach, California and return in Business Class.  Conductor CJ held enough seats in the second Business Class car (a former long distance Amtrak car) for our group to be seated together.  She also obliged by stepping off in Santa Ana to present Chris with a plaque commemorating the momentous occasion.  This was an official outing of the Fullerton, California, Rail Travel Meetup Group.



Soon after 6 a.m. we congregated at the Santa Ana, California Station where Chris handed out commemorative tee shirts.  Others had boarded our train earlier in Fullerton and Anaheim.  Still others would join us on the return trip, boarding in Solana Beach.


Thank you Chris for these commemorative shirts designed by Tom Anderson.


Soon our southbound Pacific Surfliner 562 arrived from the north.


Front of Pacific Surfliner 562 as it passed us.  The cab car was spotted right where Chris had us standing, so we stepped right on and went upstairs to enjoy the view and conversation as we headed south down the Pacific Ocean.


David Aten had boarded in Anaheim.  AJ (above) had boarded in Fullerton and soon joined us in the cab car.


We stepped off in Solana Beach and collected under the Solana Beach Station sign for an historic photo.


Chris gave the station agents commemorative tee shirts as well.


Solana Beach Station

IMG_3414.JPG   IMG_3416.JPG

The Solana Beach Station has some nice posters inside.  You can see our round trip on the bottom of the image on the right above - Santa Ana - Solana Beach.


Quik-Trak machine outside the Solana Station for quick tickets, with AJ walking by.  I always wondered why small stations around the US, which only open for arriving Amtrak trains once or twice a day, don't have one of these available.


For a group photo, I lined up the group under the Solana Beach sign above the stairs to Track 2 where we would board our returning train.


Pacific Surfliner 1567 arrived in its unphotogenic push mode - cab car first - for our return to Santa Ana.


Conductor CJ scanned out tickets and placed a seat check for Santa Ana above our seats.  Somehow, Chris knew CJ would be on this train months earlier and had arranged for her to present him the plaque as we detrained in Santa Ana.



Metrolink conductor Henry Valent joined our group in Oceanside.


I had Chris autograph my ticket for this momentous achievement.


Had Chris autograph my seat check also.



Nearing Santa Ana and the photo op


Chris holding up 1.5 to show his 1.5 million miles traveled by rail.


The official Photo Line capturing the moment.


Santa Ana Station Agents came out for photos as well.


Caught a reflection of myself in the Surfliner's window just to prove that I was there.


Soon CJ was highballing north, Thank you CJ for your help.


A photo for the Santa Ana station wall.


As No. 1567 pushed north, I got a couple more shots of Chris Guenzler marking his 1,500,000 miles of rail travel on this 9/9/2017.


Congratulations Chris!


Some details copied from Chris' own report on this trip at

Fullerton, California Rail Travel Meetup Group:

Other reports by Carl Morrison: