Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    oo..O.O.o..OO...o magicant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Glendale, CA
    My Bikes
    Synapse
    Posts
    1,902
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Pacific Surfliner

    Planning a couple rides down to San Diego (from the SFV) and want to take the train back. Same day/next day - not sure yet.

    Anyone have any special advice/warnings/experiences on that train? I'll probably take it all the way up to Van Nuys. Pretty bike-friendly from what I've heard? Do you have to get there well in advance to get a ticket/seat or can you jump on a few minutes before it takes off? Can you take bikes on/off at any station or only the major luggage loading stops? Any past problems or things I need to know?

    Thanks for any input!

    And NO, I am not planning to hop on the train tomorrow...
    If ignorance is bliss, shouldn't you be happy?

  2. #2
    mateo for short mateo44's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    1,973
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've had two train experiences (with bikes), one good and one not-so-good. The bad one was this summer, coming back from Solana Beach. There were mechanical problems, so they were one train behind. We waited about 1.5 hours for a train. Also complicating things was the Del Mar Fair and horseraces right during that time, so the trains were unusually crowded.

    The good experience was during last month's Burrito Century. We rolled into San Diego 20 minutes before the next train left. We were ticketed and wisked on the train almost immediately. We even were offered a group rate since we had more than 10 riders. Luckily the downtown SD station is one stop past the Old Town station, so the drunk football goons (there was a Chargers game that day) got on after us. So we had plenty of seats.

    Overall, I think Amtrak is great for local travel. Of course, by virtue of it being mass transit, it's not perfect. If I had surgery, or some other important event planned for later the same day, I wouldn't bank on the train being on time. That said, I find it a cheap and fun way to go! But if you have time constraints, be cautious, and leave plenty of time.

    There are issues sometimes with bikes -- they claim a pretty low number as the maximum allowed on each car, but they have always been accomodating, and we've put more bikes on a car than the stated "maximum."

    You can take bikes on and off at any stop, far as I know.

    If you have other questions, feel free to PM me. I can go on and on....
    << no sig at this time >>

  3. #3
    Senior Member thomson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    3,332
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I am kinda lazy at the moment, but is the Surfliner the one that ends in San Luis Obispo? If so, you wheel your bike on and hang it right in the car. You can exit any stop because they do not have to retrieve it from the luggage area. Also, you can board any time you want and buy a ticket on board.

    The other Pacific train (the one that goes all the way to Washington) packs the bicycles as luggage.

  4. #4
    Senior Member GP's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    7,235
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by mateo44
    drunk football goons (there was a Chargers game that day) got on after us.
    Those were the Bronco fans. The Charger fans were the sober, polite, well dressed and good looking fans.

  5. #5
    ... Brandy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Huntington Beach, Ca
    Posts
    6,948
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by mateo44
    I've had two train experiences (with bikes), one good and one not-so-good. The bad one was this summer, coming back from Solana Beach. There were mechanical problems, so they were one train behind. We waited about 1.5 hours for a train. Also complicating things was the Del Mar Fair and horseraces right during that time, so the trains were unusually crowded...
    Wasn't it more like 3 hours???

  6. #6
    mateo for short mateo44's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    1,973
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yeah, you're probably right. I was in a daze from finishing what was my longest ride to date. It was a long delay, for sure.
    << no sig at this time >>

  7. #7
    mateo for short mateo44's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    1,973
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Grumpy Pig
    Those were the Bronco fans. The Charger fans were the sober, polite, well dressed and good looking fans.
    I'm just glad it wasn't a Raiders game.
    << no sig at this time >>

  8. #8
    hello roadfix's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Los Angeles
    My Bikes
    thank you for asking
    Posts
    18,502
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Except for that Solana Beach fiasco we experienced, I've had no trouble with bikes on Amtrak. A couple years ago I took my tour bike on board the Surfliner from LA Union station to Pismo Beach and rode back to LA with a couple other cycle tourists.
    .cinelli.olympic.surly.long.haul.trucker.kona.ku.surly.steamroller.
    .litespeed.classic.litespeed.firenze.bianchi.pista.dean.colonel.plus.more.

  9. #9
    Dagger Boy Extort's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Southern California
    My Bikes
    1999 GT 5.0i mountain, 2004 Basso Reef road
    Posts
    3,247
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have never had a problem with the exception of timing and either I was late, or the train was. But that has never been a problem. Just do not lay down on the train platform (waiting area) because officially you are a vagrant and you 'cannot lay down here'... I was laying down next to a $3000.00 bike, but they didn't care about that...
    Women think they're so clever because they can fake an orgasm for the sake of a relationship, but men can fake a whole relationship for the sake of an orgasm.

  10. #10
    Senior Member devilinblack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Knott's Berry Farm, CA
    My Bikes
    Cannondale F500, Cannondale Black Lightning, Centurion LeMans
    Posts
    174
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'll be giving it a shot going from Moorpark to Fullerton this Sunday night. My first trip on a real (not at Disneyland) train.

    Someone sent me this link. I'm hoping my train is stocked up!
    -stephen



    "And miles to go before I sleep." -Robert Frost

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    The Land of Oversized Mice and Anteaters
    Posts
    535
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I regularly commute on the Surfliner. The cars can hold 3 bikes each, but if there's no room you can toss it in the baggage car, usually.

  12. #12
    oo..O.O.o..OO...o magicant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Glendale, CA
    My Bikes
    Synapse
    Posts
    1,902
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks all -- sounds good. But "bring a book" and "stay away from football Sundays" might be a good thing?

    Appreciate the input!
    If ignorance is bliss, shouldn't you be happy?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •