I'm fairly new to the US rail system and Amtrak and have a copy of some of the major train timetables from there website I assume there are more train services than just the ones listed in the main timetable. Anyway I'm planning a trip and would like to ask for some more information. In 2010 I'm Planning to visit the US for about 6 weeks in either April or October. I refuse to fly direct into LA or New York but will fly direct into Toronto and cross the US border by rail to start my trip. This is due to your counties over the top airport security system. As I have worked it out there is one train a day from Toronto to New York (Train 64) taking about 12 hours to get to New York. However there appears to be no train service to Chicago from Toronto this seems odd as its closer than New York and a major city. If there is some kind of direct train service on this route I would like to know? I also need to visit Charleston City WV during this trip. But the train service to this city is very very limited to only 3 trips a week on (Train 51 or 50). Does anyone know if there are additional local rural commuter trains operating part of the route between Washington DC and Chicago? The route appears to be a major corridor but doesn't get even a twice daily basic intercity train service strange. Also what does the two letter code next to each name on the timetable mean. e.g. Charleston City (WV)? As I'm also a railfan who likes to photograph various passenger and cargo trains. What areas of the US are great for photography of passenger trains on the eastern side of the country? What areas of the US are great for photography of Cargo trains on the eastern side of the country? Any recommendations of must do intercity or rural commuter train trips in the US? Some more general questions regarding Amtrak rail travel. What is the seating like in coach class? It seems to be the lowest class on the trains is it basicly unreserved 3rd class non aircon seating. I.e only good for short trips. Is it safe to travel alone on the overnight intercity trains in the US? What is the best type of sleeper on the overnight trains? Is there a 1st class twin berth aircon sleeper with toilet at the end of the carriage? Or is it mostly 2nd class open corridor style where bunks are along each side of the carriage and directly open on to the corridor. I have had some pretty poor experiences with food standards on intercity trains in the past ie got very ill from it. What is the food like on Amtrak overnight intercity trains? Is it best to purchase the tickets at a local station on the day of travel or a few days in advance? Does this apply to Sleeper berths on overnight trains as well? Are there any special rail passes that include sleeper use for international visitors to the US? Such passes exist in Europe and Asia and offer huge savings over buying tickets on the day. Thanking you all in advance for the help on this.