Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

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Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:19 pm

I have been looking into other options of how to get to the Playa. I have been giving some thought to amtrak as of right now the ticket will cost me $258 round trip. I have heard many people can get a ride in reno quite easy. Has anyone ever done this? Do people do this. Would love to hear what people have to say.
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Re: Amtrack to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Savannah » Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:37 pm

The Amtrak baggage allowance is outrageous, compared to flying. I noticed last year that a lot of Chicagoans take the train to the Burn; towards the summer, every last Amtrak seat from Chicago to Reno was sold out on the weekends in question. (That's not something you have to worry about now, but closer to the Event, all the seats were snapped up).

In general, people get rides from Reno all the time--often times with a campmate coming through Reno on the same day, or through the rideshare board (which isn't cookin' yet). If you were flying in, a good fallback is the volunteer-staffed rideshare desk on the first floor of the Reno Airport. I don't know how far Amtrak is from the Airport, but you could google it and see how feasible it would be to cab there if you didn't connect with your ride at the train station (or meet someone there who was picking up a rental). I'm a big fan of scheduling things, but having fallback plans, too. :)

Did I hear you say you were with BDC? . . . If so, you might be able to match up with someone coming in on a compatible day, once the ticket situation is known for you both.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:51 pm

Most deff not flying. The rideshare i found from here (Iowa) is wanting like $500 (he is taking a rv or a trailer) so Im like how can I do this cheaper. I MOVED from Virginia Beach to Iowa in April and took so much! 2 free carry ons, 3 free checked then I think I took like 3 other checked and my bike. It cost me like $200 I think for one way with all my stuff and the ticket. I can see me needing more then 5 pieces of baggage and my bike if it just me to the burn. I would be getting on in Omaha as it is the closest spot with checked baggage to me.
Yeah I have talked with Doc about joining BDC i have not gave my full commitment yet (money) cause I still do not have a ticket (Low income im applying for) so that is another thing on the money/to do list. But yeah I am just wondering how many people do this. It would be fun to hang with other burners on the way out there. It is a 35 hour trip!
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Savannah » Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:07 pm

There's no way you'd be the only Burner on the train from Omaha. Not for long anyway. :) The biggest stops on the California Zephyr relevant to you: Omaha -> Denver -> Salt Lake City -> Reno.

And you can always spot Burners en route. Many of them are already dressed to please themselves, they have too much stuff, and they look excited as @#%$.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:07 pm

Also this is what im looking at-
Both on the California Zephyr Train-

To BM
Depart: 11:05 pm, Fri, Aug 24, 2012
Arrive: 8:36 am, Sun, Aug 26, 2012

From BM
Depart: 4:06 pm, Tue, Sep 4, 2012
Arrive: 4:59 am, Thu, Sep 6, 2012



This would be the tighter option-
To BM
Depart: 11:05 pm, Sat, Aug 25, 2012
Arrive: 8:36 am, Mon, Aug 27, 2012

From BM
Depart: 4:06 pm, Mon, Sep 3, 2012
Arrive: 4:59 am, Wed, Sep 5, 2012


I have no idea what time people actually try to get to BM. I know many do the 12am gate... but do people actually wait till monday afternoon to get in?
Exodus- I know it takes a long time to get out... would I be pushing it with the 4:06 on that monday?
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Savannah » Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:28 pm

Sure, people wait until Monday afternoon to get in. That's not particularly late or strange. You can probably arrange a rideshare then. Although arriving Sunday morning in Reno gives you more time to shop and I would say there are probably even more rideshare opportunities on Sunday. (Probably not a huge difference).

If you're wanting to depart on a train Labor Day at 4:00pm, get someone who's leaving at 5:00am or 6:00am that day, preferably someone who also has a vested interest in getting out. Last year it took me 6 hours to leave starting just before 7:00am. It was my longest exodus, though I had a good time, remarkably. Took others 8+ hours to get out, but that's even more unusual. (There was apparently an accident or two on the 2-lane highway that made things even slower than usual.) 3 hours was my average exodus, 'til 2011.

If it were me, I would allow at least 6 hours exodus, 2+ hours from Gerlach to Reno + 30 minutes to look for the train station and 30-60 minutes to check your baggage (whatever they recommend; it's something like that). And wiggle room. :) Some even go to Reno the night before so as not to spaz out the next day, and collect on one of the hotel deals.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Bounce530 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:20 am

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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby lemur » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:53 am

i did chicago to reno on amtrak 4 times. its a long ride.. but it can be quite enjoyable.. I liked it.. Sleeping can be a bitch in those seats.. even though they let you spread out a lot.. (sleeping next to someone sucks.. you cant spread out as much)

edit2: the first time i took amtrak out to reno i said that just doing the amtrak trip was worth it, I had fun ..some people don't like it.. its a different way to travel.. you can talk peoples heads off all day long! (and get a lot of walking done moving about the train) :edit2

if youve never been through the mountains off of a main highway i tells ya, its friggen beautiful... sure is a lot difference to see the wilderness/nature without a huge strip of concrete and roadsigns with thousands of other cars and mcdonalds in the way..

many of the areas dont have cell phone service as the train is away from the main highway..

it is a great way to get to burning man.. as mentioned, you can bring lots of stuff.

HARRAHS Hotel and Casino is like 300 feet from the amtrak station, makes it easy to have a place to stay once you arrive (the trains can be 7~ hours late.. itd probably be good to have a place to stay rather than planning on getting up to the burn right after the train 'arrives').. HARRAHS has a 'free' airport shuttle.. it can get you to the airport for the cost of a tip to the driver.

edit: the airport is about a 15minute ride from the amtrak station :edit


I never left from a Checked Baggage station and I felt that this is a Benefit. You can have it so your bags never leave your sight.. a lot easier to keep track of them.. odds of losing one are much lower! (friend i went with in the past checked bags and lost a few... i was glad i didnt!)

As for other burners.. in the past there had been quite a few on the train.. 5-8 was common.. We would often sit up at night in the lounge car talking about the upcoming trip.. And On the way back a few times thered be the same folks.. and we would talk about the burn.. We would also share meals in the dining car.. It is quite enjoyable that way...

Many of the amtrak people have become aware of the trip..

When I did the trip I always arrived a day before I intended to go up to the playa and always got back to reno a day before i would leave toward home.. Again mostly because of the not-exactly-on-timed ness of amtrak.. ..and so i could get a good nights rest, (two days on a train is a long time!) (a good meal in a hotel with a big bed and TV is good after a long time sleepin in a tent!)



Let it be known that on that blog that Bounce530 linked it shows PLASTIC containers... Amtrak is NOT too fond of these.. It is much preferable to use a CARDBOARD BOX to a plastic container.


Bring FOOD for both ways (or plan to be able to get some food on the way back in to reno). It is a long trip.. "DINNER" in the dining car is not really 'worth' it in my vision, and the food in the 'LOUNGE CAR' isnt great.. (microwaved!) ... Also, bring beverages (like water.. and Coke products!).. The water on the train sucks.

There is USUALLY a stop at GRand Junction Colorado where you can get snacks/drinks/(cokeproducts)/icecream in the little gift shop there.. If you are wise you will take the chance to get something different than what is available on the train (to keep you sane!)


some photographs from the train part of my journey to burning man in the past:

http://www.luser.org/Train 2007
http://www.luser.org/bm9onway/ 2009

good luck!
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:43 am

I took it in 09, but of course it's only a day trip for me. I was met by AntiM'sLarry (thank you again! both of you!) and went smoothly to the burn. The station is in DT Reno. You might check but you can proably catch a free shuttle from a hotel to the airport.
There will also be ride share pick up spots in Reno, not announced for this year, but should be in a jackrabbit speaks from last year.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby lucky420 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 1:39 pm

I took the Amtrak from Reno to Winnemucca once when I was 14. When we arrived in Winnemucca I was waiting for the train man to come through our car swinging a lantern and calling out "Winnemucca" (you know like in the movies). Since I didn't see him I got up to go look for him as I did so the train started moving again. SHIT! Yeah the train man came and found me back in my seat but we had already pulled out of the station. He proceeded to yell at me but that's okay, my sister threw up in the aisle outside the bathroom. (payback to you train man).

Ended up stranded in a little bar/cafe in Carlin NV during a blizzard... :shock:

Just don't expect the train man to come through your car calling out "Reno" because he won't! :mrgreen:
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby lemur » Wed Jan 25, 2012 1:43 pm

it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Savannah » Wed Jan 25, 2012 1:50 pm

The longest train trip I ever took was 24 hours (Seattle to San Francisco). It was fun, but like Lemur, I found it hard to sleep. I managed 4 or 5 hours on the night in question. The movement of the train didn't bother me at all (soothing) but the seats don't recline much. I imagine sleeper cars are quite expensive, but if I were taking the train for a long distance I would check the additional cost, just in case--or schedule a sleep in Reno before heading to the playa. i.e. arrive Sunday morning, crash at hotel 10am-5pm, shop til ? and head to the playa for midnight entry. Second choice: arrive -> shop while cranky & underslept -> sleep -> head out Monday morning.

I would check the hours of the places I wanted to shop if it were important to me, though I'll bet the stores keep some truly good hours on that Sunday.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby ygmir » Wed Jan 25, 2012 6:53 pm

lemur wrote:it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!


Best Basque restaurant, IMHO, anywhere.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby lucky420 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:22 pm

lemur wrote:
it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!

That's where I wanted to be :lol: well kind of anyways....

Ygmir-do you remember the name of the Basque Restaurant?
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby oneeyeddick » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:33 pm

ygmir wrote:
lemur wrote:it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!


Best Basque restaurant, IMHO, anywhere.


There are 2 in Elko that are better than that one, one of them by leaps and bounds.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:55 pm

I have done LA to Creston Iowa and Virginia Beach To Omaha. So long haul trips are not to new to me. I can sleep like a baby on the train. The VB to Omaha I think I slept a few times for like 8 hours. So sleeping ehh not worried.

I did check out Harrahs. They have nothing the whole month of September! AHH!! So looks like the hotel is out of the question.

Lemer Its cool you said about grand junction! My aunt lives there so I may have to call her up and have her drop off some home made food!!

It seems as If I am going to have alot of planning to do once I get my ticket. I could take the easy route and pay $500+ and ride out there or pay half of that and take amtrak and meet new people. This is going to be a major adventure. Im interested in hearing what others have to say to :) or are planning on doing the route Chicago to Reno or getting on somewhere in there.

Edit-
Ha Ha I love this one you have that station is like 30 minutes from my house-
Image


Here is mine from this spring :) That guy was all tatted up and wearing a suit... not to mention he was trashed but a funny guy.
Image
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:26 pm

ygmir wrote:
lemur wrote:it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!


Best Basque restaurant, IMHO, anywhere.

Even better than Guernica?
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby ygmir » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:55 pm

lucky420 wrote:lemur wrote:
it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!

That's where I wanted to be :lol: well kind of anyways....

Ygmir-do you remember the name of the Basque Restaurant?


Winnemucca hotel, I think.

and, well OED, you might be right. who knows.
But, I know, I really like the one in Winnemucca.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby ygmir » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:55 pm

theCryptofishist wrote:
ygmir wrote:
lemur wrote:it coulda been worse...


just imagine if you were in winnemucca!!


Best Basque restaurant, IMHO, anywhere.

Even better than Guernica?


is that where all the bats live?
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:59 pm

I think they grow potatoes there.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:58 pm

No thats Iowa... or most people think it is haha.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby ragabashpup » Thu Jan 26, 2012 12:32 am

Sleeper car on a train is really tiny but yes there is a bed in there. You should be able to sleep better in one of those then in the regular seats.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Thu Jan 26, 2012 12:56 am

I found this article. It is pretty nice :)
http://www.burningclam.com/bm2006/2006_01.html
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:42 pm

So my ticket is going to be bought as soon as my damn debit card gets here in a few days! Going to be a blast. If you are taking Amtrak please let me know! Would be nice to get all the burners in one car. Start the burn early!
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby H.G.Crosby » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:48 pm

coach can get crowded.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby ygmir » Sun Feb 05, 2012 7:05 pm

H.G.Crosby wrote:coach can get crowded.


those are all one way rider, H.G.

and, I wonder if a stripper pole could be put up in the "burner" car?
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Sun Feb 05, 2012 7:12 pm

I don't see why not. Who has one? :D
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby Lassen Forge » Sun Feb 05, 2012 7:36 pm

Stairs to the lower level have a pole each... heh heh heh...

Too bad I live on the other side of the station from you - sounds AWESOME!

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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Mon Feb 06, 2012 12:37 am

I like that Idea!! :)

I sure do hope some other people from here will be on amtrack. I am doing the Friday night train that gets in Sunday morning.
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Re: Amtrak to Burning Man? (reno)

Postby tattoogoddess » Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:17 pm

Now that tickets are flowing out... Bump. Anyone taking amtrak?
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