The Zephyr is a train that runs every day from Emeryville, Calif. to Chicago. The ride takes three days and two nights. With a bit of extra time on my hands, I decided to embark on the $127 (with my AAA discount) adventure. I met interesting people, ate really bad food and saw some of the most spectacular scenery. A Japanese tourist who I met on the trip said it best: "I took the train because I wanted to see how big America really is."
The Sierra Nevadas in Northern California.