Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Riding the Lincoln Service to St. Louis

I love train travel! I recommend Amtrak to everyone considering a regional trip in the states. Last month, my cousin Melissa got married in St. Louis and I thought this was a perfect opportunity for a train ride. There are a few Amtrak routes that travel between Chicago and St. Louis and I decided to ride the Lincoln Service on my way there.

The train has a snack car where drinks and snacks are served. They have breakfast sandwiches, chips, wine, beer, and a bunch of other things for sale. We upgraded our seats to business class and enjoyed the giant soft leather seats. I brought my laptop with me and took advantage of the wall outlet at our seats. I tethered my phone to the USB port and was able to surf the web and chat with friends.


The trip is only five and a half hours and we arrived right on schedule. We got a free drink with our business class upgrade and we both had coffee. When we got off the train, my parents were at the St. Louis Gateway station waiting for us. They drove us over to the famous "Gateway Arch" so we could do some sightseeing before heading back to the hotel to get ready for dinner.

Inside the base of the Arch is a museum that celebrates the US expansion to the west. The whole park is formally called the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial and was built to reflect St. Louis and Thomas Jefferson's role in the westward expansion of the United States. In 1903 Thomas Jefferson purchased the Louisiana Territory from France (and Spain) and sent the Corps of Discovery (aka the Louis and Clark Expedition) to find a route to the Pacific Ocean.

We shot some photos inside the museum but the wait was too long to get up inside the Arch. The temperature outside was over 100 degrees F so we took a taxi to the hotel in Kirkwood and spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing in the air conditioned room.


Crass Pip said...

Nice photos, especially the first one, out the back of the train.
Amber & I went to StL in '05, and we really enjoyed the arch. It's quite a view from the top, and you have to love the 60's sci-fi egg elevators. :)

Unknown said...

St. Louis feels like my second home, so thanks for the memories. I will have to tell you the story about St. Patty's day in St. Louis some time. It involves a crawdaddy and the arch.

Andy said...

I've got a few more train travel posts for this summer. I took the Texas Eagle back from St. Louis, the Empire Builder back from the cottage, and the Hiawatha Service to Milwaukee all in a few weeks. There are also a couple more St. Louis posts in the works, so stay tuned!