Recently I found myself with a couple months of time off. I decided to use it in the most productive manner I could think of so I booked a one month rail pass on Amtrak. I already had plans to go to Ada Camp in San Francisco and my sister’s high school graduation in Mechanicsville, Virginia. At $670 the rail pass was cheaper than plane tickets and I got to see most of the country. Tentatively I plan to visit Portland, San Francisco/Silicon Valley/Oakland, Iowa City, Richmond Virginia, and New York City. I was able to schedule my trip so I could take the Empire Builder line, the California Zephyr, and a good chunk of the Coast Starlight. My tentative schedule is below.
View Transcontinental Express in a larger map
My exact schedule for the first leg of the trip can be found here. Packing for this trip has been a little crazy. I want to squeeze everything I need into a back pack, but train travel is tough as traveling in coach requires that you bring a lot of necessities (and entertainment).
I purchased a Nexus 7 tablet for the journey and I have a tupperware container with a raspberry pi, arduino, makey-makey, breadboard, and various component to keep me entertained on the train. The transcontinental trips are almost three whole days so I should have lots of time to read, code, and build cool stuff with my fellow travelers. Hopefully I will post some cool stuff from the road, and have 4G coverage for most of the trip.