"Amtrak Cascades (2): along the way" Greyhound or Amtrak Tip by goshawk301
Greyhound or Amtrak, Portland: 15 reviews and 20 photos
Seattle's King Street Station is currently under renovation - the clocks on its Italian-style campanile aren't working! We've got to get our acts together, Seattle!
The train departs southbound and passes under the gigantic retractable roof of Safeco Field. It runs along the Boeing Field (you can see the Museum of Flight's newly acquired Concorde), into Kent Valley, and then turns west and stops in Tacoma.
The segment between Tacoma and the next stop, Olympia/Lacey, is the most attractive in terms of scenery, with the waters of Puget Sound always in view. The train first runs along Commencement Bay and, cutting across Point Defiance through a tunnel, runs along Tacoma Narrows, going under the famous suspension bridge. It passes through the bayside town of Steilacoom and turns inland just before the Nisqually delta.
South of Olympia the train enters a broad rural valley. It stops in Centralia and eventually meets the Cowlitz River, which joins the Columbia River at the next stop, Kelso/Longview. After this the train runs along the Columbia - the landscape is that of water, flatland woods, pastures, and wetlands, interspersed with surprising, isolated industrial plants (including the Trojan Nuclear Plant).
The train crosses the Columbia after the next stop, Vancouver WA, and soon arrives at the Union Station in Portland. The Portland station is a classic American train station, with a large marble hall and wooden benches and counters. It is far more attractive than the Seattle station.
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