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McHenry Trip


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#1 doodaa

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Posted 15 May 2017 - 10:42 AM

Hi all

 

Im planing a trip stateside from the UK starting the first week of September this year. One of the few Metra lines I have not travelled on is the McHenry Branch of the UP-NW.

 

I will be staying near O'Hare, with a Hire car. My plan is to take advantage of the jet lag on my first day and do the following:-

 

6:29am Des Plaines - McHenry 7.30am Train 603, which should turn into

7.39am McHenry - Ogilvie Transportation Center 8.52am Train 632

 

Anyone local have knowledge if this is fesaible. How reliable are these services this early in the morning

 

Steve



#2 brianpmcdonnell17

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Posted 15 May 2017 - 04:52 PM

I have never been on that train, however the very low frequency of that branch leads me to believe that the first train will become the second and you are therefore safe. To add on, it is unusual for Metra to be nine or more minutes late.

Edited by brianpmcdonnell17, 15 May 2017 - 04:52 PM.

Routes Travelled: CL WAS-CHI, Card. CHI-WAS, Caro. CLT-RGH, CS SJC-LAX, Cre. BAL-ATL, EB MSP-CHI, ES NYG/NYP-NFL, LSL BOS-ALB, ML ALB-NYP, NER FBG-RVR+WAS-BOS, PS LAX-ANA, Pen. NYP-PGH, Pie. RGH-DNC, SM ORL-NYP, SS FTL-WAS
New Routes: LSL NYP-CHI, CZ CHI-RIC, CS SJC-SEA, EB SEA-MSP

#3 MikefromCrete

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Posted 15 May 2017 - 05:34 PM

Based on the schedule, it looks like only two train sets overnight at McHenry, so the 7:30 arrival will turn to the 7:39 departure. Metra trains are usually quite punctual , so you should have no problem. 



#4 doodaa

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Posted 16 May 2017 - 01:08 PM

Thanks guys, sounds that will work out then, Now to fill the rest of the day... should not be to hard

 

Steve



#5 NorthShore

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 08:57 AM

Yes, and this is actually the only roundtrip which one is able to take on the line, as it is the sole train which turns and heads back to the city. The most challenging fan trip.

I've done it...sorta. I actually opted not to return via Metra, but to take an oddball Pace bus to Fox Lake and return on another Metra line. But I would not recommend such, as the bus stop is not easily identified nor the bus a typical Pace bus. So it might be missed.

#6 dogbert617

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Posted 28 May 2017 - 05:47 AM

Yes, and this is actually the only roundtrip which one is able to take on the line, as it is the sole train which turns and heads back to the city. The most challenging fan trip.

I've done it...sorta. I actually opted not to return via Metra, but to take an oddball Pace bus to Fox Lake and return on another Metra line. But I would not recommend such, as the bus stop is not easily identified nor the bus a typical Pace bus. So it might be missed.

Interesting you've done this, since I was considering doing the exact same thing myself! Taking that Metra run to McHenry some weekday morning at 7:30am(or whenever it arrives into McHenry), spend a day up there, then take a Pace #806 bus in the afternoon rush hour north to Fox Lake, and take a train on that line back to Chicago. I've wanted to visit Chain O'Lakes Brewery, and yep I'm really into trying all the different beer breweries out there. I've gotten to the point, where it's SUPER tough for me to think of any stations I haven't visited on the Metra system over my 10+ years of doing weekend pass trips to visit as many various stations as I could. Heck, I even did Manhattan, Harvard, and Elburn before, which says a lot! Not to forget the Mokena-Hickory Creek station once, which doesn't have much by it except mostly chain expressway motels and fast food by there. I can appreciate this station's purpose and good, which is to service people who live nearby, and that it is an easy way for travelers along I-80 to exit, park their car, and take the Rock Island Metra line.

 

BTW, I don't think it'll be that huge of a deal if the #806 bus doesn't have bus signs. I've taken different Pace buses myself in further out suburbs that didn't have marked bus signs, and was okay since the bus stops are marked with an icon on Google Maps. How different btw(vs. the typical look Pace bus models I've seen), is the look of the bus that runs on the #806? That's my bigger concern, more than the fact the bus stops don't have proper signage.


Edited by dogbert617, 28 May 2017 - 05:53 AM.


#7 NorthShore

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Posted 29 May 2017 - 09:10 PM

The bus which picked me up seemed to be more of the paratransit van type. No route sign. I caught it by the river (and across the street from some little government building) a few blocks away. I think that is the safest place to reliably pick it up, as it is more of an expected stop for the driver, who wouldn't be surprised at the presence of an oddball traveler at a "stop" which might be rarely made, and easily overlooked. There were some other awaiting passengers, though perhaps for another route. It seemed to be a central transfer point.

McHenry does have a small, more historic area which was interesting to walk through for a few minutes. The ride between McHenry and Fox Lake is unique for transit in the Metro area. Alternatively, I believe that there is a bus which would take you the other direction to Woodstock, for a return trip on the CNW/UP.

Oh, one more thing. That bus only had a cash box for fare. No Ventra (or, perhaps Chicago Card, at the time) on board.

Edited by NorthShore, 29 May 2017 - 09:12 PM.


#8 dogbert617

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Posted 29 June 2017 - 09:36 PM

Interesting the #806 bus doesn't accept the Ventra card. I thought it would, but guess not. The Chicago Card is no longer accepted on CTA and Pace buses, since 2014 when it was totally phased out by the Ventra card.

I know the 807 and 808 buses also serve McHenry, and that one of those 2 bus routes goes to Woodstock. Thanks for the response to my post, and for letting me know that the vehicles used on the #806 are like paratransit ones.

#9 doodaa

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Posted 02 September 2017 - 06:47 AM

Hi guys Trip worked out great yesterday

 

Des Plaines - McHenry - OTC

 

OTC - LaSalle

 

LaSalle - Blue Island (via the Main)

 

Blue Island - LaSalle (again Via the Main)

 

LaSalle - Union Station (Via Lou Mitchell's for Brunch)

 

Union Station - Antioch - Union Station

 

OTC - Des Plaines

 

To day im off to Illinois Railroad Museum in Union

 

Will write a trip report when I get some time

 

Thanks

 

Steve



#10 MikefromCrete

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Posted 03 September 2017 - 10:37 AM

Sounds like you had a great day. Hope you enjoy the IRM, there's a lot to see (and ride) there. 



#11 doodaa

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 03:27 AM

Have the first part of my trip here

 

 

http://discuss.amtra...september-2017/

 

Steve






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