Revenge of the #NerdTrain 2014

#NerdTrain crew plays games

What’s better than a train trip? How about a train trip with 20 folks who love what you love?

What started four years ago as a friendly competition between Matt Johnson and Ashley Robbins, self-proclaimed transportation wonks, has blossomed into a cross country adventure so epic it has its own hasthag. Meet the #NerdTrain, a group of folks traveling by train (an obvious highlight of the trip) to explore new cities together.

The group, which nominates destinations and then casts votes to make a final decision, has logged some serious train vacation hours not to mention Amtrak Guest Rewards points along the way. Since their first trip they have explored cities ranging from LAMontreal, Minneapolis and New Orleans. For those interested, that’s the Empire BuilderAdirondack,Empire service, Sunset LimitedCapitol Limited and Coast Starlight.

#NerdTrain loves transit!This year the #NerdTrain crew will take on the California Zephyr, traveling together from Chicago to Emeryville. The main trip will cover one route and seven states, but the #NerdTrain crew will be traveling from across the country to join the voyage, totaling 10 Amtrak trains through 24 states.

Although the maiden trip started with a group of friends, it has expanded over the years to friends of friends, since anyone in the group is allowed to invite new people. The first and second #NerdTrain excursions had 10 attendees, in 2013 the group grew by one to 11 and this year is the largest crew yet, with 19 attendees.

Aww the #NerdTrain crew gathers in the observation carEver wonder what it would be like to travel with a big group on #Amtrak? Where going to let the #NerdTrain crew provide a few key insights right here on the Amtrak blog. Want to follow along with the group in real-time? Check out the hashtag #NerdTrain or follow the crew member’s Twitter handles below.

And who knows, after following along with their epic journey, you may find yourself joining the 2015 #NerdTrain adventure yourself.