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tonys96

Zephyr to Reno

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Have not ridden the CZ. Looking to do so in late March. Chicago to Reno. Flying from Dallas to Chicago. 

Good time to go?

Looking for hotel recommendation that would be sort of convenient to both Midway and CUS. Also for one in Reno.

Thanks in advance!

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I did that trip a few years ago. Had a bedroom in last car so took lots of good pictures from railfan window. Lots of snow and sunny. Great views coming out of tunnels. Would do it again. I stay north of CUS when in Chicago so no help there. In Reno I have stayed in town at Harrahs and Eldorado. They were ok. Also have stayed at Atlantis Resort and Peppermill. They were better. Enjoy the trip.

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Harrah’s and Eldorado are both about one block from the Amtrak Reno station. So is the Silver Legacy. Harrah’s has the lowest midweek prices. They all charge more on weekends.

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When in Reno I visit my money at the Eldorado and am always satisfied with the accommodations.  It's a very short, safe, walk from the Amtrak station.  Havn't stayed at Harrah's in ages - interestingly, unless it's changed, they have a 13th floor, Bill Harrah considered it lucky.

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3 hours ago, tonys96 said:

The reason for stopping in Reno is there is not a lot to do for a few days in Sacramento.

How about going all the way to Emeryville, then (it's not much further)? In my opinion, the Sierras really are the highlight of the trip (even cooler than the Rockies), so it would be quite a shame to be so close but not actually see them.

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4 hours ago, johbeaker said:

I would fly to Denver instead of Chicago and go to Emeryville/San Francisco...

This! Cut out that pretty uninteresting stretch from Chicago to Denver, and put the savings toward the highly interesting stretch from Reno to Emeryville! Win-win!

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I live in California and have made the trip from Reno to the East Bay a few times. The mountains are the part of the trip that is worth it outside of the parts in the Utah desert. If you do come all the way into California, there are far more interesting things to see, like Ferry Plaza and San Francisco waterfront, Ocean Beach, Downtown Oakland or even taking the ferry across the Bay. Reno is a nice place, if you want to gamble or go on hikes. March really isn't the time of year to do that since it still could be snowing, which would make the mountains worth seeing on its own. Not to mention Sacramento is worth a day trip at least. Old Sacramento is cool to walk around, same with the train museum, not to mention getting dim sum. 

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On 2/2/2019 at 8:47 AM, tonys96 said:

The reason for stopping in Reno is there is not a lot to do for a few days in Sacramento.

Nothing says you still can't stop in Reno for a couple of days.    As for Sacramento, I could easily spend a full day at the train museum. 

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On 2/5/2019 at 9:17 PM, sttom said:

I live in California and have made the trip from Reno to the East Bay a few times. The mountains are the part of the trip that is worth it outside of the parts in the Utah desert. If you do come all the way into California, there are far more interesting things to see, like Ferry Plaza and San Francisco waterfront, Ocean Beach, Downtown Oakland or even taking the ferry across the Bay. Reno is a nice place, if you want to gamble or go on hikes. March really isn't the time of year to do that since it still could be snowing, which would make the mountains worth seeing on its own. Not to mention Sacramento is worth a day trip at least. Old Sacramento is cool to walk around, same with the train museum, not to mention getting dim sum. 

Old Sacramento is an OK walk I guess.   Kind of fake though.  I do like the river boat hotel.   Kind of cool.   Wish I had known it was there before I came to town.   Would have been different staying there.

 

The path along the river is very pretty but kind of depressing with all of the homeless.  I was on my bicycle.  Just kept moving.   I noticed some cash, just a few bucks, on the trail.  Thinking it could have been a set up, I kept moving.  Wasn't worth stopping anyway.   Saw some homeless guy on the trail and clued him in.   Hopefully  that made his day.

 

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14 hours ago, spinnaker said:

The path along the river is very pretty but kind of depressing with all of the homeless.  I was on my bicycle.  Just kept moving.   I noticed some cash, just a few bucks, on the trail.  Thinking it could have been a set up, I kept moving.  Wasn't worth stopping anyway.   Saw some homeless guy on the trail and clued him in.   Hopefully  that made his day.

Smart move. There's some really good riding on the trail upriver (the American River, which comes into the Sacramento River from the east, a couple miles north of Old Town). But you have to get through the homeless encampments. Once you're beyond the City of Sacramento limits, it gets better. If you take the light rail up to Folsom, you can do a little riding in the foothills, and then enjoy the slight downhill on the way back to Sacramento.

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I made the mistake of thinking the trail ended at the highway.   I think I should have made a left over the bridge just before you got to the highway.     That incident was one of the several reason I finally  broke down and got a  smart phone.   If I had a smart phone I  could have seen the path on the map. :(

Similar issue in Chicago finding a decent place to eat along the lake.   I finally went into town to Panerra  (and the crowds! :( ).   Later I returned to the lake fpr more riding and found a nice little cafe in a marina not more than a mile or two from town.

 

 

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