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Texas Eagle & Heartland Flyer


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#1 jwodae

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 06:07 PM

Has anyone taken these trains to OKC or Austin lately?
I am contemplating a spontaneous trip to either cities during a weekend, maybe the Labor Day weekend. I have been to Austin but never been to OKC.
Which train is safer?
Are both trains terminated in downtown OKC/Austin?
Never taken a train before. Any tips?
To be honest, I am very excited!! rotflmao.gif

Thanks a lot! JD



#2 longhornz32

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 07:08 PM

QUOTE (jwodae @ Aug 27 2009, 07:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have been to Austin but never been to OKC.


My god man, don't go to OKC for fun! The wife and I tried it and we didn't stop for coffee the next morning until we hit the Texas border. The only thing good about OKC is Pops and it even has the sense to not be in OKC proper. OKC had the fore site to take the worst part of West End and the River walk and combine them in miniature to form "Bricktown". When we were there a bike rally was going on and Ms. Longhonrz32 and I were the only ones to be wearing a shirt. The "river" that runs through "bricktown" is a ditch about 100 yards long with barely enough room to give the boats 2 way traffic.

Get someone to spin you around 30 times, point you south and kick you in the butt.

#3 Electricron

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 08:34 AM

QUOTE (jwodae @ Aug 27 2009, 07:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Has anyone taken these trains to OKC or Austin lately?
I am contemplating a spontaneous trip to either cities during a weekend, maybe the Labor Day weekend. I have been to Austin but never been to OKC.
Which train is safer?
Are both trains terminated in downtown OKC/Austin?
Never taken a train before. Any tips?
To be honest, I am very excited!! rotflmao.gif
Thanks a lot! JD


Yes, I have. Both trains are safe.
Both Oklahoma City and Austin have stations in or near downtown.
But the Texas Eagle actually terminates in San Antonio.

Tips for your First Amtrak Ride
http://www.gomovers....rak-riding.html
1) Before leaving home, you need to make sure you bring proper identification with you, it is mandatory. You can use a government issued photo ID like a driver’s license or passport. Make sure you have your ticket. You cannot board the train without it. Make a copy of your ticket and leave it at home, it will be very useful if you happen to lose your ticket.
2) To make sure you are comfortable, you should bring in your carry on bags any medications you will need during the entire time you will be on the train. You will not have access to your checked bags, and Amtrak does not make any exceptions. If you need ice for any medication you take, call ahead of time and they will make arrangements for you.
3) You are allowed to bring your own food and beverages on the train. You will not have access to any heating devices, so pack your food accordingly. You may bring alcohol beverages on the train but there are limited places where you can drink them.
4) You may consider purchasing travel insurance for your trip. This will help if any unforeseen problems cause a delay in your travel or if there are unexpected mishaps during your trip.
5) For your luggage they allow both carry-on and checked. For your carry-on bags you can bring two pieces. Your purse, diaper bag or briefcase is not included as a carry-on bag. These bags must weigh 50 pounds or less. They are very strict on this point. The maximum size of each bag is 28 x 22 x 14 inches. Each piece must be properly tagged with your information. For your checked bags, you will be allowed three bags. They are to be sturdy and be able to withstand normal loading procedures. They also have a 50-pound limit. The size allowance is 36 x 36 x 36 inches. In order to check in or claim your luggage, you will need your identification.
6) Most Amtrak seating depends on which train you are actually on. Most seating, though, is on a first come, first serve basis. Depending on the route, you may be able to upgrade to business class, sleeping quarters, or quiet cars - you will need to check prior to your arrival. (Texas Eagle has sleeping quarters, Heartland Flyer has none of the above)
7) To make the trip more relaxing, bring some items from home to help occupy your time. You may use your laptop, play music or watch a movie with a DVD/CD player (provided you have headphones). It is also suggested you bring things to occupy your children like a deck of cards or coloring books and crayons. Remember your cell phone and camera. You can also bring a pillow and blanket.
8) You can board both trains in downtown Fort Worth at the ITC. There's no free parking at or near the ITC. Arrange to have friends drop you off and pick you up. Or be willing to pay in advance your parking fees so your car will not be towed away.

#4 Keller Pirate

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 11:11 AM

Gosh, after reading the "tips" I don't think I would ever want to ride a train.

A trip to Austin should be fun, just get on enjoy the scenery for a few hours and get off.

#5 JBB

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 02:26 PM

It's usually good etiquette to give credit to a source when you copy and paste something like that.

#6 Electricron

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Posted 29 August 2009 - 03:03 PM

QUOTE (JBB @ Aug 28 2009, 03:26 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's usually good etiquette to give credit to a source when you copy and paste something like that.

Okay. Done.

#7 GenE

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Posted 29 August 2009 - 05:26 PM

QUOTE (Keller Pirate @ Aug 28 2009, 12:11 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Gosh, after reading the "tips" I don't think I would ever want to ride a train.

A trip to Austin should be fun, just get on enjoy the scenery for a few hours and get off.



Ok, it has been years since I rode the train (but my dau/sil/gs rode about 18 months ago). I love riding the train.

What is NOT noted in the list. The trip takes longer than a few hours.

1. In my opinion (no factual evidence), the southbound trains are later the farther away they get from Chicago, because (and this IS fact) passenger trains have to yield for freight trains.
2. 30 years ago, a trip from Fort Worth to Temple, TX could take a good 6 hours. I have never ridden as far as Austin. I think CBellomy (is that the right person?) did the FTW to Austin trip this spring, so he could tell you better how long it took.
3. My daughters trip was from Austin to Dallas, and they left at 9.30ish, and finally, finally landed in Dallas (after an approx 1 1/2 layover in Fort Worth due to engine trouble) at about 3-4.00 in the afternoon.

Train rides can be fun, but you need to understand that there WILL be delays.

Have fun, in Austin,

GenE

#8 Owen

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Posted 29 August 2009 - 06:21 PM

I took the train several times between Fort Worth and Austin in the mid-1950s. The trip then took roughly six hours.

#9 Electricron

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Posted 30 August 2009 - 12:36 PM

I've ridden the Texas Eagle many times towards Chicago and San Antonio.
It's been my experience lately, when the train runs on BNSF track, it keeps on time better than when it runs on UP track. The Eagle runs all the way between Chicago and Fort Worth (990 miles) on UP track, Fort Worth to Temple (123 miles) on BNSF track, and Temple to San Antonio (147 miles) on UP track.

It's 199 miles between Forth Worth and Austin. Per Amtrak's Texas Eagle posted train schedule, the Eagle supposedly departs Fort Worth at 2:40 pm and arrives in Austin at 7:00 pm, 4 hours and 20 minutes later. The Eagle average speed is ~46 mph between Fort Worth and Austin.

Note: Distances obtained from Yahoo Maps; highway milage should be close to railway milage.




#10 Austin55

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Posted 27 May 2016 - 06:50 PM

Cant remember if there was a thread where it was mentioned before, but there was some risk that the FW-OKC route would be cut due to funding issues in the state of OK. We disscussed this at the forum lunch today. Turns out everything is fine, at least through 2017. There will also be a new stop added in Thackerville OK, where WinStar is located, which I could see being a big draw to tourists. 

 

http://passengerrailok.org/

 

(Side not, that website is about in as good of shape as the route)






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