Jump to content
railgeekteen

Was pre Katrina Sunset Limited the only train to go cross country?

Recommended Posts

It may even be the case that it was the only train to have ever run as a single entity from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean, other than the Panama Canal Railway of course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the SL ran from east to west from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean — the Panama Railway does the opposite.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

Edited by chakk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the SL ran from east to west from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean — the Panama Railway does the opposite.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

What? Are you serious?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

And the SL ran from east to west from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean — the Panama Railway does the opposite.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

What? Are you serious?

 

I had to read that comment a few times to try to figure out if I was missing something. I *think* the idea is that the Pacific end of the Panama Canal Railway is farther east than the Atlantic/Caribbean end.

 

At first I read that comment to mean that the Sunset Limited ran westbound (only?) and the Panama Canal Railway runs eastbound (only?).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, Panama Canal Railway is more or less a North North West (Atlantic Colon) - South South East (Pacific Panama City) run geographically.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a short time the SL traveled approximately 2800 miles going LAX to MIA, so was only coast to coast but also the longest in the US.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, as Robert Young of C&O said in the late '40s, a pig can go across the country without changing trains, but you can't.

 

However, note that there was transcontinental sleeper service between Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York and Washington by a variety of routes. The Chief carried through sleepers to my certain knowledge. I know the Pennsylvania bought into the California Zephyr pool, so there was a CZ lettered Pullman owned by Pennsy. I think maybe NYC did, too. So you could actually occupy the same room, although many people got off in Chicago and did not stay onboard in cases while the cars were switched, sometimes between stations (Dearborn to Union or LaSalle for the sleepers coming off the Santa Fe to the Pennsy or NYC respectively).

 

A lot of the connections did alternate days between Pennsy and NYC for Chicago to New York, IIRC.

 

I seem to remember seeing somewhere that for awhile Santa Fe had a through San Diego to Washington Pullman for awhile, there was so much military/government traffic. But I am not sure about it.

 

Most of through sleepers were gone by the early 60s, IIRC.

Edited by zephyr17

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As I recall, there was a brief time where Amtrak sold through service LAX-WAS on the SW Chief-Capitol Limited and ran the equipment through. However, my vague memory of it is that it was dropped because of reliability (too often a late inbound Chief resulted in a late Capitol Limited departure, or vice versa) and possibly because of the need to clean the train at CUS with passengers on board.

 

 

Some reports indicate that if it was successful, it would have eventually been merged into a single route.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the introduction of the 707 in 1958, Coast to Coast travel was must easier in the luxury of airplanes, thus ending the demand for the coast to coast sleepers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the introduction of the 707 in 1958, Coast to Coast travel was must easier in the luxury of airplanes, thus ending the demand for the coast to coast sleepers.

Yep. Jet travel pretty much killed off business travel on the railroads and did it fast. Not just the transcontinental sleepers. It really killed demand on the sleepers in general, which were primarily aimed at the business traveler. Pullman lines in general diminished incredibly fast after that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the late 70's Amtrak operated a through sleeper to Washington from LA via the Sunset and Crescent. Like the Sunset the Crescent was also tri weekly NOL-Atlanta at that time. You could occupy the sleeper for the overnight in New Orleans - not only for through passengers but also for passengers originating in NOL " upon payment of applicable charges".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably the longest single level sleeper car route in the USA was the NYP ( PRR CR later Amtrak) - WASH (SOU RR) - NOL ( SP then Amtrak ) LAX single level steam heat and A/C sleeper. Ran 3 days a week until Amtrak converted Sunset to the Super Liners. Car did overnight each way at NOL which allowed for cleaning, repair, and occasional replacement. SOU had many spare 10-6 (?) sleepers that covered the whole route with several spares in NOL.

Not sure when the service started and SP, CR may not have been involved ?

Edited by west point

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the late 70's Amtrak operated a through sleeper to Washington from LA via the Sunset and Crescent. Like the Sunset the Crescent was also tri weekly NOL-Atlanta at that time. You could occupy the sleeper for the overnight in New Orleans - not only for through passengers but also for passengers originating in NOL " upon payment of applicable charges".

Actually, the through sleeper was started by SP-Southern before Amtrak in 1970. It started as part of the ICC deal SP made to restore sleepers on the Sunset in exchange for dropping the frequency of the Sunset to 3 times a week. Amtrak and Southern (which did not join Amtrak initially) continued it after Amtrak took over on 5/1/71.

 

So, oddly enough, that through sleeper was directly involved in the Sunset running only three days a week.

Edited by zephyr17

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't there a car that ran through from the West Coast to Chicago, dropped down to WAS and was added to one of the Florida trains? I know the car was designated 830 from CHI-MIA.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't there a car that ran through from the West Coast to Chicago, dropped down to WAS and was added to one of the Florida trains? I know the car was designated 830 from CHI-MIA.

Any idea on the year ThirdRail. I know just the historian to ask.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm trying to track down that through car. Did the car switch trains at WAS or was it on the South Wind/Floridian the whole way CHI-MIA?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, how many nights/days was that from end to end? Was the same Porter with the car the whole trip since they worked for Pullman?

Floridia and South Wind were two nights, so probably four nights total.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Wasn't there a car that ran through from the West Coast to Chicago, dropped down to WAS and was added to one of the Florida trains? I know the car was designated 830 from CHI-MIA.

Any idea on the year ThirdRail. I know just the historian to ask.

 

 

I believe this was early to mid 90s.

 

I'm trying to track down that through car. Did the car switch trains at WAS or was it on the South Wind/Floridian the whole way CHI-MIA?

 

I know it switched at WAS and I believe CHI.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AFAIK, in the Amtrak era, besides the thru Sunset Limited to Florida, the only coast to coast thru sleepers marketed as such, were the aforementioned Southern Crescent - Sunset Limited, and the other was the daily National Limited - Southwest Chief, switched in Kansas City...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the late 70's Amtrak operated a through sleeper to Washington from LA via the Sunset and Crescent. Like the Sunset the Crescent was also tri weekly NOL-Atlanta at that time. You could occupy the sleeper for the overnight in New Orleans - not only for through passengers but also for passengers originating in NOL " upon payment of applicable charges".

Didnt that car go all the way from LAX to NYP?

IIRC, Amtrak brought the Southern Crescent on to NYP, although Southern added or dropped several cars at WAS...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×