Day three was spent on the train again. We woke up in our tiny room after a night of so-so sleep to see the deserts of Utah. I could watch the scenery while laying in bed!
Here's a gas station in the middle of the desert. So weird. Nothing else was around it. But I guess if you were driving through you'd be excited to see this.
We had our first breakfast on the train and it was good. Matt had what you see below and I just had pancakes. The coffee was not that great. We dined with a couple of modern day reformed hippies that do a lot of train traveling. She is a school nurse so they were on their way home after spending spring break in Napa Valley. We learned a lot from them - like that our next train trip should be Seattle to Los Angeles. We'll see!
Oh, they also travel with a stack of two dollar bills for tips. Their stack was brand new and in sequential order. She said waiters always love to get them! She also carries silver dollars to give out. Maybe we'll do that next time. We've already learned our lesson to have smaller bills because we had to make change at one meal!
For breakfast and lunch the tables in the dining car are topped with paper. I found this drawing as we were headed back to our room. "Yeah! It's another great day on Amtrak!"
Most of the day we rode alongside the Colorado River. It had me itching to go canoeing! The smudged window in the picture below is courtesy of the dining car.
Our first stop of the day was right after breakfast in Grand Junction, CO. Man, it was not a good stop! Normally I'd say I'm not opposed to legalizing marijuana, but when you're in a town where everyone on the street is smoking it, it really stinks!! Bluh.
I bought a postcard with a picture of our train on it and quickly scribbled a message to the kids only to find that they didn't sell any stamps. Lame.
Our main order of business after returning to the train was to take our first moving showers! We opted to use the bigger shower located in the downstairs section of our car. It has an almost normal sized shower stall and a small area right outside of it for dressing. In all honesty, it wasn't that bad! Actually, the water got really hot and had great pressure so it was pretty relaxing. Felt good to be clean again!
These pictures were taken from our room window between Grand Junction and Glenwood Springs, CO.
Check out that green water slide!
We got out for a quick second in Glenwood Sorings to buy a stamp and finally mail our postcard. Look how bright the blue sky was behind Matt - and the mountains!
We finally took the obligatory photos of us and the train. We may not look cute, but at least we were clean. :)
I had to zoom in to get this picture. Can you imagine riding an amusement park ride on the edge of a big cliff/mountain?! Heck no!
I love this big red barn.
We were so full from our pancake breakfast that we missed our included lunch in the dining car. Luckily there is a lounge car where you can buy snack items and we were able to get individual pizzas.
Our next stop was in Winter Park, CO and it was much cooler with all the snow on the ground. Matt stayed on the train while I got off to take pictures.
Our train, the California Zephyr, in all the snow.
Colorado had some beautiful scenery!! These pictures aren't as crisp because it was snowing as we went through.
This is probably one of my favorite pictures from the trip so far. How stinking cute is that bright yellow house? Just sitting out in the snow all by itself. I want it to come live in my backyard.
Lots of snow coming down in this pic but if you look closely you can see the river at the bottom of those mountains.
As a happy surprise, we made it to Denver super early and had a full hour for our stop. We jumped at the opportunity to get off the train and have dinner on stable ground!
Didn't really think through the fact that it was snowing and freezing!
Behind Matt is a bit of a homeless rally. Lots of signs saying "F*** the Police!" and "Houselessness is everyone's right!"
We saw our first store where you could buy marijuana. Again with the bad smell in the streets.
We did not want to miss our train so we ate a quick dinner at BD's Monogolian Barbecue. It was good - much better than what we would've had on the train (not that the train food is awful, but you know). So we missed two of our three included meals this day.
As soon as the sun sets you can't see anything outside the train windows at all. We played cards to kill time before going to bed. I out the beat down on Matt. :)
We called it a night around 10:00 Mountain Time. While we slept, we rode through the state of Nebraska. I don't have a single picture to show for it! We woke up this morning in Iowa and will get off the train soon in Illinois. More on that later!