So my friend Emily was finishing up an artist residency outside of Lincoln, NE when I got back from Beunos Aires. She wanted company for the drive back east but with the amount of flying I was doing I couldn't image getting on another plane. Instead I used that as an excuses to do something I've been wanting to do for a while and that is, try out long distance train travel in the states. I took off from Penn Station on an overnight train bound for Chicago (via going north to Albany first), had a short lay over in Chicago and then took off on another train for Lincoln. All in all it was about a 28 hour journey. I wouldn't recommended it for everyone, but I had a great time. Slow travel really is the best travel sometimes. Much more about that later!
Waiting for the Shore Line Express at Penn Station.
Everything I need for the 1.5 day train trip and the week long drive back.
We headed north and right around sunset started to pass the Catskills. The train follows the Hudson all the way up to Albany.
I made it safe and sound to Chicago the next morning.
The best part of train stations is that they are in the middle of cities. During my "lay over" i was able to pop out to the Lou Mitchell's, an awesome and famous dinner located a few blocks from the train station.
I thought the ride after Chicago would be really boring, but it was really pretty!
The train I was on had a sweet observation car... this same train would continue on all the way to San Fransisco! Right through the Rockies!
A train yard somewhere west of the Mississippi.
I finally made it Lincoln, Emily was happy to see me, I was happy to see her. We stayed on the farm where her studio was for a few days and then took off.
We took Highway 2 through the northwest section of NE know as the Sand Hills. It was very different then what most people picture NE to look like.
The next morning we went and saw Mt Rushmore and then climbed to the highest point east of the Rockies (a look out tower in the Black Hills)
It was cold.
after making it to Rapid City (what a weird town) we spent half a day exploring the Badlands.... i think this was the highlight for both of us! I felt like we were on Mars!
After this we B-lined it home, stopping in Chicago to see friends, and Cleveland to play pool and western PA to go bowling! What a great trip, makes me realize how much more of the US I need to see.