Chicago to Denver

Trip Start Sep 07, 2009
Trip End Nov 17, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Colorado
Wednesday, October 14, 2009

14/10/2009 - Today we were leaving Chicago and catching the train to Denver. As we had a long journey ahead of us (18 hrs!), we treated ourselves to a cooked breakfast at the hotel and checked out. The hotel was definitely the best we had stayed in so far - a real treat. We caught a cab to Union Station and made our way to the waiting room where we has our first sighting of an Amish family! Although we tried not to stare, it was fascinating watching them.

We boarded the huge double-decker train and were seated by the conductor on the upper level. The train seemed spacious and, being veterans of the Amtrak, we were actually quite looking forward to the journey. Unfortunately, we soon realised the guy in front of us was a bit of a weirdo and got more and more drunk on a bottle of gin (which he even offered round the carriage at one point!) as the journey progressed. The train travelled across Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska before reaching Colorado. We got to see most of Iowa (mainly flat, open, fields of corn!), but not much else. This particular train had a viewing carriage, which we just happened to be in as we crossed the Mississippi river, probably the highlight of the trip! The route apperently becomes more scenic after Denver, as it continues all the way to California through the Rockies .

15/10/2009 - After a broken nights sleep on the train, we arrived at Denver station at 7am and made our way to our hotel, where we had arranged for an early check-in. We caught a few hours sleep before waking up to have a walk around and grab some lunch. It was a beautiful sunny day and  a lot warmer than Chicago had been. The main downtown street (16th) has a free bus that travels up and down, which we took full advantage of. We stopped for lunch and browsed the shops. We found a lovely independent book shop called the Tattered Cover, where we spent an hour or so searching through the books and stopping to read some on their cozy couches. 

Back at the hotel, we opted for a take out pizza as we had some planning to do for our road trip the next day. We had found Denver a bit of an anticlimax after Chicago (as you can tell from the lack of photos!) and were happy to be staying just the one night.
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