Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - California

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Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - California

Postby DancingK » Tue Mar 06, 2012 6:44 am

I've been trying to find a discussion forum which covers the North American public transport routes, I came across this site but I'm not entirely sure where I should post this or if in fact it's the right type of forum to post this type of request/question in. (If it isn't could someone kindly point me in the correct direction ?)

I am currently trying to plan a trip around various areas of North America, in some cases I have found routes but the travel time takes so long that I wouldn't get to the city in time (there are events in each place I want to attend which would start between 7-8pm local time in each area).

I'll list the areas I need to get to and perhaps someone could aide me in the best way to get to these using public transport.

(my dates are made up for now but the time in which to get to next city will be the same difference.)
I'll fly from London (UK) to Seattle on 1st of Month
Seattle, WA to Bremerton, WA - 2nd of Month
Bremerton, WA to Seattle, WA - 3rd of Month
Seattle, WA to Everett, WA - 4th of Month
Everett, WA to Redding, CA - 6th of Month
Redding, CA to Stockton, CA - 7th of Month

Stockton, CA to any airport with flight to Chicago on 8th of month.

EDIT: I forgot to add in the Minneapolis part as the flights from London seem few and far between, but if I could manage those flights then the previous three days would be London - Minneapolis (flight), then Minneapolis to Fargo, ND, Fargo, ND to Spokane, WA - then to Seattle and onwards as mentioned above.

I've found a few routes up to Everett, but the route and time required to Redding, CA seems to be quite difficult to work out. It seems there's 1 train a day and it leaves at 2am, would there be any other options by perhaps travelling east or west first then back down towards Redding ?

Same with Stockton trying to find a route to an airport, I have had a quick look at this but not extensively I wanted to make sure I could actually travel to Stockton before organising flights from a particular airport etc.

Any help, guidance, pointers would be much appreciated.

I understand this is a rail forum which is my preferred form of travel, but if anyone happens to know that perhaps a bus or plane would be more feasible it'd be great to know.

Looking forward to hearing from someone, many thanks :)
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Re: Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - Californ

Postby ExCon90 » Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:28 pm

I can help with some of this.

Seattle-Bremerton and return is best done via Washington State Ferries (http://www.wasdot.wa.gov/ferries), an excellent and frequent service from the downtown Seattle waterfront. I'm not up on local transportation in Bremerton, but if the events you are attending involve significant numbers of people, I would expect that transportation would be provided from the ferry terminal at Bremerton.

Everett can be reached via Sound Transit (http://www.soundtransit.org), which operates a few trains at weekday rush hours and fairly frequent bus service throughout the day. Amtrak also has two daily trains to and from Vancouver, BC seven days a week. I think there is also local bus service in Everett.

Redding seems to be in the you-can't-get-there-from-here category (the train time you cite is indeed correct), although maybe someone who lives in the area can come up with an idea. The usual way of dealing with such situations in America is to rent a car. One possibility would be to rent a car at Sea-Tac airport (accessible from downtown Seattle by a light-rail line -- I forget whether it's also operated by Sound Transit); another would be to take Amtrak to Portland and take the Portland light-rail line (called MAX) to the airport and pick up a car there, in either case with arrangements to turn it in at Stockton, or else at your departure airport, since it may be worthwhile to keep the car while in Stockton. Otherwise, there is an Amtrak train from Stockton at 9.01 am, with an Amtrak bus connection meeting the train at Emeryville (on the east side of the bay, and closest to the Bay Bridge) and arriving at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Market and California Sts. in San Francisco, at 11.20 am, right at the Embarcadero station of BART, which has a very good service to SFO airport every 15 minutes at most times, with 20-minute intervals on weekends and evenings. I would think SFO would give you the best choice of flights.

I hope others who are more familiar with the area can supply some further information.
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Re: Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - Californ

Postby mtuandrew » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:01 am

Welcome, DancingK!

It isn't intuitive in Minneapolis to reach the train station from the airport, but in short, one needs to either ride the Light Rail (#55) from the airport to downtown Minneapolis or the #54 bus from the airport to downtown St. Paul. From either side, take the #16 bus along University Avenue to Cleveland Avenue/Transfer Road (St. Paul) and walk north a block to the station. I'd recommend the Minneapolis-side connection, as the city is more impressive and the light rail is a fine ride. The Amtrak station is in a back corner of St. Paul, at least until Union Depot's renovation is complete next year. To look up the route for yourself, see the Metro Transit website (http://www.metrotransit.org.) If you intend to stay in Minneapolis for a bit, it might be easier to inquire at hotels whether they have an airport shuttle, and then see if they'd be willing to drop you off at the Amtrak station on your way out of town.

The Empire Builder is the only option for travel from MSP. It runs just once a day, leaving for the west at 11:15 pm on the evening of the first day, and arriving in Seattle at 10:25 am on the morning of the third. Not sure if that helps, but good luck!

Moderator's Note: As for this thread, I'm moving it to the Rail Travel & Trip Reports forum, though I'll leave a link to this forum.
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Re: Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - Californ

Postby DancingK » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:11 am

Thank you, I will enquire with hotels too re shuttle (nice tip)... :)
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Re: Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - Californ

Postby ExCon90 » Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:00 pm

I was just looking through the printed Amtrak schedule and found that Amtrak has four buses a day between Redding and Sacramento which for some reason I couldn't find when I looked on the website. A possible schedule would be as follows:

Lv Seattle 9.45 am Coast Starlight
Ar Sacramento 6.35 am next day
Lv Sacramento 10.15 am (bus)
Ar Redding 1.30 pm

Lv Redding 9.50 am (bus)
Ar/Lv Sacramento 1.35/1.45 pm
Ar Stockton 2.50 pm

I'm not sure whether you have to buy a rail continuation on the southbound trip (this has sometimes been required as a condition of using the Amtrak Thruway buses), but if necessary you can always book to the first rail station beyond.

This may be on amtrak.com under California Thruway Bus Connections -- San Joaquin (that's where it is in the printed schedule).
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Re: Travel Routes - Help ? Minnesota - Washington - Californ

Postby ExCon90 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 11:47 am

Yes -- the Redding bus schedules are under San Joaquin. Not the first place I would have looked.
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