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Texas Eagle - Route Guide - Texas Eagle - Route Guide.
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Texas Eagle
Amtrak's Route Guide - Train #421 & #422
http://www.trainweb.com/routes/route_21/rg_21.htm

Welcome aboard the Texas Eagle, Amtrak's 1,308-mile Superliner journey between Chicago and San Antonio that takes us through the fertile farmlands of Abe Lincoln's Illinois, across the mighty Mississippi at St. Louis and through the Missouri Ozarks to Arkansas and Texas.

Chicago * Springfield * St. Louis
Little Rock * Texarkana * Dallas
Fort Worth * Austin * San Antonio

Sunset Limited Route
continues west from San Antonio to Los Angeles

Welcome Aboard!

You're traveling on board Amtrak's® Superliner® train -- the Texas Eagle. On this route, you'll be traveling between Chicago, the home of the 110-story Sears Tower -- the world's tallest skyscraper; and San Antonio, the home of the Alamo -- by way of St. Louis, "The Gateway to the West," and the sunbelt states of Arkansas and Texas.

While on board, you'll be experiencing the utmost in train travel, along with some of the country's most remarkable and historical sights: Lincoln, the only city named for the President before he was elected; Springfield, the state capital and the town Lincoln loved; St. Louis, gateway to the West; Dallas, deep in the heart of Texas; state capitals and ghost towns; riverboats and refineries; longhorn cattle and farm crops.

At San Antonio, the Texas Eagle links with the Sunset Limited en route to Los Angeles. (The new Texas Eagle/California Service operates direct through San Antonio to Los Angeles without linking with the Sunset Limited).

Amtrak and your crew are proud to host you on board. We'll do everything we can to ensure you enjoy your trip. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask your Attendant or On-Board Service Chief.

The Fun Starts Here!

The Texas Eagle features on-board activities the whole family will enjoy. Listen for announcements of the specific time and location of activities, and most of all -- have fun!

Hospitality Hour. Join fellow passengers in the Lounge Car for drinks and complimentary snacks, and don't forget to ask about regional specialties.

Games are usually conducted during the trip. Small prizes will be awarded. Listen for announcements for time and location.

Meet the Crew That Makes the Magic Happen!

The Conductor is in charge of all crew members and is responsible for the collection of tickets and the safe operation of the train. The Chief of On-Board Service" supervises the on-board service crew, and overseas the quality of service.

Enjoy On-Board Accommodations That Pamper and Please!

Roomy Coach Seats. Your Coach Attendant will see to your needs. Since your seat is assigned for the length of your journey, please do not change without first consulting a crew member.

Private Sleeping Compartments. Your Sleeping Car Attendant will prepare your room for daytime or nighttime use, provide wake-up calls and bring the morning paper and beverages. Individual speakers bring you recorded music on Channels 2 or 3, and train announcements on Channels 1 and 2. Simply turn the channel selector near the reading light. First Class passengers receive additional amenities including complimentary meals in the Dining Car.

Economy, Family, Special and Deluxe bedrooms are available. Special bedrooms have a private bathroom and Deluxe have private baths with shower. Sleeping accommodations may be purchased on board from the Conductor if space is available.

Dining Car Service. The Dining Car features complete meals in a comfortable setting. Major credit cards are accepted. Sorry, there is no smoking in the Dining Car. A crew member will contact you if dinner reservations are necessary.

Lounge Car Enjoy the scenery from our large picture windows, and don't forget the sandwiches, snacks and beverages available for purchase at the Cafe Bar. You can also purchase souvenir playing cards, post cards and blankets. Lounge Car hours are generally from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight. Smoking is permitted only in designated areas of the Lounge Car.

Scenic Photo Tips

SCENIC SPOTS: Your train passes many beautiful and interesting sights. The "camera" symbol on your Route Guide Map marks the best spots, so have your camera ready!

OUTSIDE SHOTS: Medium-speed films (ASA 64 or higher) are recommended for shooting scenery through the train windows. If your shutter speed is adjustable and light conditions permit, set it at a higher speed (1/125 or 1/250 sec.) for the clearest results. Hold your lens close to the window to eliminate glare and reflections.

INSIDE SHOTS: Flash is recommended. To avoid glare and reflections, do not point the flash directly at the windows.

The Texas Eagle

A heartland journey from Grain Belt to Sun Belt.

This guide is written from north to south, noting how many minutes past the previous Amtrak station you can expect to see a particular sight, and whether you should look to your right or left. The first time reference tells you how far that point is from the next Amtrak station to the north, and the second time, how far it is to the next Amtrak stop to the south. If you're traveling northward, just begin at San Antonio or your point of origin and read the entries in reverse order. Remember to look left when we've indicated to look right, and right when we've indicated to look left.

Note that all AMTRAK STATIONS are in capital letters to set them apart from towns and regions through which the Texas Eagle travels but makes no stop. Use this guide along with an Amtrak timetable to determine station times. All times in this guide are approximate.

* Chicago *

CHICAGO "Here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the soft little cities," Carl Sandburg wrote of Chicago. And to this day, Chicago stands tall among American cities, especially in the importance of its modern architecture. Rebuilding from the devastating Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Chicago was the birthplace of the steel-frame skyscraper, and now claims the world's tallest -- the 110-story, 1,454-ft. Sears Tower -- just two blocks from Union Station. We'll travel between Chicago and St. Louis via the tracks of the Illinois Central and Southern Pacific Lines. As we leave the station and cross the Chicago River, look back for views of Chicago's skyline. The Chicago River was largely responsible for Chicago's early settlement, following the discovery by French explorers Louis Jolliet and Pere Jacques Marquette in 1673 that the river's arms reached nearly to the drainage basin of the Mississippi River System, forming a natural route for early trappers and traders.

Bridgeport (15 Min./25 Min.) This heavily industrialized section of Chicago was settled by Irish immigrants who built the Illinois and Michigan (I&M) Canal between 1836 and 1848. Bridgeport was the lifelong home of Chicago's late mayor, Richard J. Daley. We briefly parallel the Stevenson Expressway on our right.

Willow Springs (31 Min./17 Min.) In abrupt contrast to the city, numerous deer can often be spotted in the heavily-wooded forest preserve to our left.

Lambert (33 Min./15 Min.) We cross the Calumet Sag Channel, which connects Lake Michigan with the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. The Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal is an engineering marvel that links the Great Lakes with the Mississippi, and reverses the direction of the Chicago River making it flow out of, rather than into, Lake Michigan. Our route from here to Joliet is through the Illinois and Michigan Canal National Corridor -- a 120-mile long urban cultural park.

Lockport (40 Min./6 Min.) Note the restored buildings on our right as we parallel the old towpath-lined I&M Canal. The Joilet Correctional Center (42 Min./4 Min.) is on our right.

JOLIET Named for French explorer Louis Joliet. The large scale castle-like native stone building to the left of the station is a high school. South of Joliet, we take the Southern Pacific Lines, passing the Des Plained River which is to our right, paralleled by the I&M Canal. We pass between the Des Plaines Conservation Area on our right and a large U.S. Army arsenal on our left.

Kankakee River (16 Min./37 Min.) This tributary of the Illinois River was followed by French explorer La Salle in his 1682 voyage claiming the Mississippi watershed in the name of his king, Louis XIV.

Braidwood (21 Min./32 Min.) Just north of town, we pass a golf course on our left that was created from a reclaimed strip mine. The towers of Consolidated Edison's Braidwood Nuclear Power Plant are also visible.

Dwight (33 Min./20 Min.) (Note: As of 1997, Dwight is now an Amtrak station stop). The small white Pioneer Gothic Church here was attended by Edward, Prince of Wales, while visiting nearby Blackstone in 1860 to hunt grouse (praire chickens). Just beyond this station is a clocktopped, one-story brick bank, one of only three banks ever designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, and the only one still standing. We then cross the Vermillion River as we approach our next stop.

PONTIAC This town was named for the Indian chief who was once very powerful in this region.

Normal (25 Min./5 Min.) Named for the teacher's college, Illinois Normal School, which has become Illinois State University. The 20,000 student campus is on our right.

BLOOMINGTON-NORMAL Lincoln's "Last Speech" was delivered here, and the Licoln family figured prominently in the success of Bloomington resident George M. Pullman. Pullman's "Pioneer," the most luxurious sleeping car then devised, was too wide to operate on most railroads. When President Lincoln was assassinated, Pullman offered the free use of this car to Mrs. Lincoln for the presidential funeral train. She accepted, and the railroads made the alterations necessary for its use. The way was paved for Pullman's name to become synonymous with railroad sleeping cars.

Funks Grove (10 Min./26 Min.) Illinois' only stand of virgin timber was donated to the state by the Eugene Funk (Funk Seeds) family. In late winter, the maple are studded with sap-collecting buckets.

Kickapoo Creek (30 Min./6 Min.) We cross this creek north of Lincoln.

LINCOLN The only city named for Lincoln before this election as President. A statue of a watermelon slice to the train's left at the south end of the Lincoln depot, commemorates Abraham Lincoln's christening of the town at this spot, using the juice of a watermelon taken from a nearby cart. As a youth, Lincoln lived 30 miles west of here at New Salem. It was there that he unsuccessfully courted Ann Rutledge. The Amtrak train of that name stops here daily.

Rail Splitter State Park (2 Min./30 Min.) on our left, marks a route followed by Lincoln during his days as a circuit riding attorney.

Sangamon River (21 Min./9 Min.) We cross the river as we approach Springfield. The Illinois State Fairground (28 Min./1 Min.) is seen on our right.

* Springfield *

SPRINGFIELD Near the geographical

CARLINVILLE

Macoupin Creek (7 Min./25 Min.)

ALTON

Wood River (1 Min./38 Min.)

Cahokia Diversion Canal (10 Min./30 Min.)

Granite City (15 Min./27 Min.)

Merchants Railroad Bridge (20 Min./17 Min.)

Eads Bridge (29 Min./8 Min.)

The Gateway Arch (36 Min./2 Min.)

Busch Memorial Stadium (40 Min./2 Min.)

* St. Louis *

ST. LOUIS

(6 Min./3:40 Min.) The Anheuser-Busch

Jefferson Barracks (38 Min./2:50 Min.)

Pevely (60 Min./2:30 Min.)

Big River (1:45 Min./1:45 Min.)

Mark Twain National Forest (2:00 Min./1:30 Min.)

During the night, the train stops at POPLAR BLUFF in southern Missouri, and at WALNUT RIDGE and NEWPORT in Arkansas.

* Little Rock *

LITTLE ROCK

MALVERN

ARKADELPHIA

Prescott (30 Min./50 Min.)

Hope (42 Min./36 Min.)

Red River Valley (55 Min./23 Min.)

Homan (1:05 Min./13 Min.)

* Texarkana *

TEXARKANA, ARK/TEX

Sulphur River (25 Min./1:14 Min.)

Jefferson (1:15 Min./21 Min.)

MARSHALL

LONGVIEW

"Pumps" Refinery (19 Min./2:27 Min.)

Grand Saline (1:20 Min./1:20 Min.)

Mesquite

* Dallas *

DALLAS

Deeley Plaza (1 Min./55 Min.)

Trinity River (3 Min./52 Min.)

Grand Praire (15 Min./40 Min.)

Arlington (24 Min./33 Min.)

Masonic Home (20 Min./30 Min.)

Handley (44 Min./20 Min.)

* Fort Woth *

FORT WORTH

CLEBURNE

Cow Pasture Bank (8 Min./60 Min.)

Balcones Fault (14 Min./45 Min.)

Brazos River (16 Min./40 Min.)

Meridian (30 Min./30 Min.)

Bosque River (35 Min./25 Min.)

Clifton (40 Min./20 Min.)

Between Valley Mills and Manhattan (50 Min./10 Min.) watch for a small herd of buffalo on the ranch to the left.

Middle Bosque River (55 Min./5 Min.)

McGREGOR

Moody (10 Min./23 Min.)

TEMPLE

Little River (20 Min./35 Min.)

San Gabriel River (42 Min./12 Min.)

TAYLOR

Round Rock (20 Min./20 Min.)

North of Austin, our tracks are briefly bracketed by the MoPac Expressway (30 Min./1 Min.) named for the Missouri Pacific Railroad, which provided the right of way.

Camp Mabry (36 Min./8 Min.)

* Austin *

AUSTIN

Colorado River (2 Min./35 Min.)

Aquarina Springs (38 Min./2 Min.)

SAN MARCOS The tower on our right (2 Min./ 1:30 Min.)

New Braunfels (25 Min./1:07 Min.)

San Antonio International Airport (55 Min./37 Min.) On our right. We cross the middle of Almos Park Golf Course.

* San Antonio *

Click Here for the Route Guide of the Amtrak Sunset Limited if you will be continuing west on that train.

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