Despite being a whopping 6:22 behind schedule leaving Truckee, CA, I don’t feel all that bad after seeing picturesque Lake Donner.

Of course, that all changes five minutes later, when at 5:10, we have to wait 47 minutes for an eastbound UP freight train coming up the mountain.

You know, these freight delays are getting out of hand. Coast Starlate, meet your brother, the California Forever.

If today is any indication, that letter Amtrak sent to Union Pacific about the legal and contractual obligation of UP to keep Amtrak trains moving isn’t working. In fact, it appears to be making things even worse. After costing me a minimum of seven hours today, my message to Union Pacific is the same one I give their engine when it finally chugs past: A nice, big one-fingered salute.