Sugar Railroad Explorer

April 19 - May 1, 2022

Join Friends of the 261 and High Iron Rail as we collaborate on a journey over the US Sugar Railroad in Florida. On this once in a lifetime journey, you will travel to America’s sweetest little city, Clewiston, Fl. It is here were we will join the US Sugar Railroad steam locomotive #148 and venture over the US Sugar railroad. Tour the Florida Crystal’s sugar mill, explore historic Clewiston, enjoy the warm sunny weather of Florida and the rich cuisine of the local area, as we venture to the southeast corner of the United States.

Day 1 – April 19

Depart Chicago on Amtrak #50, the Cardinal via New River Gorge. The Cardinal is the successor of several previous trains, primarily the New York Central’s James Whitcomb Riley and the Chesapeake and Ohio’s Railway George Washington. The James Whitcomb Riley operated between Chicago and Cincinnati. The George Washington was a long-distance sleeper that ran between Cincinnati and Washington, D.C.  Both routes survived until the formation of Amtrak in 1971

Day 2 – April 20

Arrive Washington, DC. Opened in 1907, Washington Union Station is currently Amtrak’s headquarters and the railroad’s second-busiest station with annual ridership of just under 5 million and the ninth-busiest in overall passengers served in the United States. 

Day 3 – April 21

Depart Washington on #91, Silver Star. The Silver Star was originally a service of the Seaboard Air Line Railroad, running from New York to Miami and later also St. Petersburg (beyond Tampa). It was inaugurated December 12, 1947, to replace the Advance Silver Meteor. Amtrak took over the Silver Star in 1971.

Day 4 – April 22

Arrive Miami, FL, is a coastal metropolis located in Miami-Dade County in southeastern Florida. It is the 44th-largest city in the United States and the core of the nation’s eighth-largest metropolitan area. Miami was named in 1896 after the Miami River, derived from Mayaimi, the historic name of Lake Okeechobee and the Native Americans that lived around it.

Day 5 – April 23

Depart Miami for Sebring, Amtrak Special

Using the Sugar Railroad 148, we will proceed to Clewiston on the Sugar Railroad. We will have lunch at Lake Placid and overnight at Clewiston.

No. 148 was manufactured in April 1920 by the American Locomotive Company (ALCO) of Richmond, Virginia, for use by the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC).

Day 6 – April 24

Depart Clewiston for Belle Glade and Cana and return, overnight in Clewiston.

Day 7 – April 25

Depart Clewiston for Okeelanta and sugar mill lead to tour the sugar mill.

In 1850, before the 20th Century even began, the Fanjul family milled their first sugarcane. Little did they know at the time that the same passion that drove them to craft that first batch of sugar would eventually grow into all that Florida Crystals has become today.

Return to Clewiston for overnight.

Day 8 – April 26

Layover Day for tours and exploring in Clewiston.

Clewiston, historically known as America’s Sweetest Town, was incorporated in 1925 and occupies 4.57 square miles. Clewiston is centrally located in south Florida about 60 miles east of Fort Myers on the Gulf of Mexico and 60 miles west of Palm Beach on the Atlantic Ocean.

Day 9 – April 27

Depart Clewiston for Miami via Sebring for Amtrak connection.

Day 10 – April 28

Free Day in Miami

Day 11 – April 29

Depart Miami on Amtrak #98 Silver Meteor

Day 12 – April 30

Arrive Washington, DC, 4:05PM. Depart Washington on Amtrak #29 Capitol Ltd for Chicago

Day 13 – May 1

Arrive Chicago

Because of the limited accommodations on this trip,

we are asking those seriously interested to make an initial deposit of $2,500.

The balance will be due March 15, 2022.

Roomette (in Cimarron River) $9,650.00
Bedroom, double occupancy, per person: $8,250.00. (Please identify your roommate).

You will be required to sign a liability release before departure.

Please contact us at [email protected] to reserve your room today!