Southwest Chief: California
As the sun went down west of Albuquerque, it wasn't possible to see much in Arizona or eastern California. So the photographic day began in San Bernadino, CA as we proceeded around the San Bernadino mountains into Los Angeles.
As we entered Los Angeles, I was struck by how much industry was visible. While the socially-constructed stereotype I'd had of LA was of palm trees and the lots of idle wealthy folks with synthetic enhancements, the view from the train was considerably more gritty. Admittedly, railroads inherently travel through areas with clients to service, and the nasty weather gave the whole experience more of a Blade Runner feel than it might have had on a sunny day, but the contrast between reputation and reality was striking to this weary traveler 48 hours after I'd left the snow of northern Illinois.