Category Archives: Travel and Leaisure

Traveling Oregon – the recreational way


This is awesome! I’d like to try this sometime – would make a sure enough blog post on the rails ride and more. Check it out.

Oregonians are a lucky bunch—creating America’s first tiny hotel on wheels, fashioning bicycle parts to ride old rails. They’re plotting a trail across the desert, launching world premieres on the stage and promoting travel by water or on gravel from one end of the state to the other..

Essence of traveling by train – Ideanomics!


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Chasing the written word, while traveling is like chasing a herd of cattle through a cattle drive from Denver, Colorado to the Oregon Territory in the old west 1800’s.

Traveling and writing makes the best of both worlds, no matter how you put it, but literally your not doing all the driving – the engineer who drives the train, the pilot who flies the friendly skies, the driver who drives the Greyhound bus, they’re all doing the work – while you rest assured, your leisurely trip across the Colorado Rockies into the Oregon Territory gets you to the Applegate and Oregon Trail’s will be as smooth as you think as you travel by train toward the famed Oregon trails of the same names, mentioned above.

300px-EugDepot SouthRising at the wee hour of three-thirty in the morning to prepare for the morning commute to Portland, Oregon via the Amtrak Cascades from Eugene to Portland in common sense fashion as life springs in the fast lane of our interstate highways for those who travel the Interstate Five corridor between US and Canadian Border to the US and Mexican Border south of Los Angeles, I’m dwelling in the shadows of darkness, along the hollowed and storied railroad lines of the Pacific Northwest as Amtrak prepares to leave it’s Eugene Depot train station for Portland’s Union Station – my worries of driving along the heaviest traveled lanes of Interstate Five has me resting comfortably and soundly as the train slowly pulls out of the Eugene Station heading north toward Portland.

Amtrak bikeIt’s morning traffic in the fast lane – railroad style! Through the years of traveling, I’ve gone by planes, trains, automobile and bicycle, but I find it more relaxing and comfortable traveling by train than driving or flying the friendly skies across the Continental United States – riding by bicycle isn’t such as bad as taking the train, but you can take your bicycle with you on the train if you wanted too – I elected not to take bike on this trip to Portland, but it would be nice to ride Portland Streets with a bicycle for a day and hop the train back to Eugene later in the day and ride home from the Eugene train depot in downtown Eugene.

Here is a good article about Adventure Cycling Association and Amtrak teaming up on a pilot project involving bicycles on Amtrak back in 2013.

But it all sounds like fun – there has been a few instances when I’ve looked into the idea of traveling to Portland via train and helping with ham radio events in that area with fellow ham radio operators – I’ve yet to try it taking my bike on the train, but I have played around with the idea of taking the bike on the train and helping fellow hams at some ham radio related events with my bicycle and ham radio all in a days works from Eugene to Portland and vise versa back to Eugene.

Has a writer, blogger and bicyclist, it’s the best of both worlds when you travel by bicycle with Amtrak and your two wheeled friend – you can’t go wrong taking the ole miss with two-wheels! My late grandfather used too say, “if you can take it, than your in for the better of the two worlds,” he would often say, when it came to traveling with one’s hobby, such a bicycling your way with a train.

Throw mommaIt’s not exactly the thought of traveling by train, it’s gives you the random thoughts as a scene from the Danny Devito and Billy Crystal movie, “Throw Momma From The Train,” plays in your mind as they travel by Amtrak train they two must decide what to do about something about Devito’s character “Owen,” who has dreams of killing him Mother with Crystal’s character, “Larry,” only to be kicked off the train by the late actress Ann Ramsey before the movie fades to a year later when Owen and Larry later catch up with one another.

Since, I ain’t in Billy Crystal’s shoes, there’s literally the thought of a good murder mystery to be written on the train as you travel at speeds you never thought possible, other than that of the Starship Enterprise and other federation vessels across the universe. It’s that simple, has I write this blog post, I’m enjoying working and writing on my laptop as the train leaves Eugene, Oregon for Portland, Oregon’s Union Station – nice to know with today’s technology, writers are able to craft their work with wi-fi internet access and being able to shuttle their finished product to their blog or editor at some of the most read publications on the news stand or read electronically on the internet!

Amtrak tripAll aboard is what it’s all about – leisure, writing and leaving the driving to someone else, over the years, I’ve enjoyed the ride and it’s always been fun, since it’s still dark out, it would be my first blog post published in the twilight zone of darkness while riding America’s most treasured asset – the railroad!

What can I say, by the time I hit the send button and the edit has been done – this blog post will have already made it’s way from my desk at the office at home and truly finished while on the railroad before reaching Portland’s Rose City, the Columbia River and the famed Lewis and Clark trails historically sitting high and mighty above the Columbia Gorge.

Hoot, hoot, at it’s best from the rails!

Travel the rails this holiday season!


blog pix 1Winter travels are abound. I’m taking my first train trip in five years on Amtrak’s Coast Starlight to Portland, Oregon. Twenty years ago, I used to make monthly or bi-weekly train trips aboard Amtrak to Tacoma, Washington, to work with my brother in his security investigation agency.

The six hour train ride between Eugene and Tacoma was always refreshing to see the land and prairies of the great Pacific Northwest – today, many of those prairies, I once saw on my trips to Washington likely have changed through the years. The railroad still lives in it’s prime as it once did back in the days when traveling by railroad was the primary means of transportation around the country, other than by horseback or stage coach, which was far and beyond the railroad to major locales along the hollowed railroad lines of the Pacific West Coast- the stagecoach was the secondary means of travel versus riding on horseback.

amtrak map westThe Amtrak Coast Starlight runs from Seattle, Washington all the way south to Southern California with stops in Portland, Eugene, Sacramento, San Francisco and Los Angeles along the way. I’ve only ridden the northern tier of the Coast Starlight, but have never road the entire route from Seattle to Los Angeles or from Eugene to Los Angeles or vise versa – however, that’s likely another blog for another time and trip somewhere or sometime in the near future onboard the Amtrak.

Getting your tickets is easier nowadays than it was in the past, when you had to hoof it to the train station and buy your ticket to your desired destination. Now, it’s completely the opposite with today’s technology, you can get your train ticket online while using Amtrak’s website at Amtrak.com which will also give you the number of your train, arrival and departure times as well as the trains selective schedule as well.

Amtrak eticket mobileWhile getting your tickets online you can also have them emailed to you with a PDF attachment of your train e-ticket and print it out on your computer before you leave for your train trip and come with a barcode to have your ticket wirelessly scanned on your phone via email with the PDF attachment without having a papered version of your ticket from an Amtrak ticket agent at the train station or from an Amtrak ticket kiosk which is also available at designated Amtrak Train Stations across the country.

Amtrak eticketAdding the Amtrak mobile application via the Google Play Store or your iPhone app store is simple as it can be to download the app to your smartphone, computer or laptop to keep track of train times and more, including your e-tickets at the convenience of your palm in the way of a laptop computer, ipad or smartphone, which makes traveling in the twenty-first century a snap at the fingers at the finger tips of smart electronics.

“How awesome can that be, I tell myself aloud?” – as I prepare and plan for my latest train trip aboard the Amtrak Coast Starlight train from Eugene to Portland, Oregon, before the heaviest surge of holiday travelers hit the world of “trains, planes and automobiles,” for the holidays to enjoy Christmas with their families and more.

Traveling by train is an awesome and pleasure seeking experience, not to mention, I’ve flown the “friendly skies,” in the past – but, find taking the train is a more leisurely experience and convenience than traveling by airline – at least it’s cheaper in the long run, as well. It may take a bit longer to get to from Point A to Point B, but that’s okay because there’s lots of time to travel and see parts of the country or the valley’s you’ve never seen by railroad. It’s quite a big difference, while flying thousands of feet above the ground across the friendly skies than it is by rail.

My theory of traveling is let it be, “traveling pants and enjoyable” – no matter what other’s say, it’s your traveling pleasure that wants the best possible cause and the best possible price for your traveling wallet, rather, it be seating in cramped quarters down the majestic isles of the friendly skies or traveling by railroad to a more secluded environment where everyone is in the enjoyable mood of seeing the country, valley’s and prairies by railroad.

5th StSo this holiday season, take the train and enjoy the view while your at it – you’ll be glad you did, while saving time and money, you won’t have to wait in line as much as you would at a cramped airport while a nor’easter takes out the friendly skies to a screeching halt and more – getting stranded at the airport is a nightmare, traveling by train is likely the remedy you need before you get that ugly airport ulcer your mother warned you about days ago!

Travel safe and enjoy the view, while traveling by railroad!