As I looked around the observation car of Amtrak’s California Zephyr, everyone enjoying the passing scenery was squinting like Clint Eastwood or John Wayne. The West, it seems, is always sunny and bright.
Everyone was taken aback by the imposing, reddish 200-mile-long Book Cliffs as we followed the Colorado River out of Colorado and away from all roads. But I soon spotted something coming up that would be my primary memory of this journey through the heart of the West. Frankly, I thought I already had my “main moment” when rafters mooned the train as they made camp along the Colorado. The section of the river from Glenwood Springs Canyon to the Utah border is called Moon River thanks to a decades-old tradition of rafters mooning the train as it whizzes by.