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The California Zephyr Silver Thread Through The West

4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

Price: $19.95 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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The California Zephyr Silver Thread Through The West
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Product Details

  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio:
  • DVD Release Date: September 17, 2007
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000W4O32U
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #170,162 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Climb aboard the California Zephyr and experience the magic of a unique train, and also meet the people who made the Zephyr special.Enjoy a meal in the dining car as described in memories of a dining car steward, or have Zephyrettes share their daily experiences with you. Find out what it was like to ride in a Vista-Dome as recalled by several passengers, or learn from the person who presided over the demise of the train how difficult it was to terminate the California Zephyr.

This product is manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media.'s standard return policy will apply.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 21 years of extraordinary travel August 1, 2008
The best thing about this film is that the California Zephyr is seen in the context of other trains that were part of a postwar bid by the railroads to attract new passengers. Right-of-way shots alternate with shots on board, and there are interviews with the president of Western Pacific and reminiscenes by the dining car steward, Zephyrettes (hostesses), and a curator from the Smithsonian. You don't get the impression that the train had to end as it did, but WP insisted on going it alone as a carrier and now they are part of the UP. The film ends with a folk song written specifically for the train. With two I have made myself, it brings to seven the number of films I know of on this subject.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relive the enchantment of the Silver Lady December 24, 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a professionally produced, fair-minded, and vividly photographed recollection of what many believe to be America's greatest passenger train, the California Zephyr (CZ), which operated between Chicago, IL and Oakland, CA from 1949 until 1969. A product of postwar collaboration among three railroads (the Burlington, Rio Grande, and Western Pacific), the CZ featured what many aficionados consider to be the most beautiful passenger railroad equipment ever built, gleaming in its stainless steel exterior and incomparably luxurious inside. The CZ's standard equipment included five dome cars, which enabled passengers to see the beautiful scenery (and the train itself, snaking ahead and trailing behind). Railfans will savor the brief, but rewarding shots of CZ consists and locomotives that aren't available in other videos, but this is a video that can be enjoyed by anyone -- it includes touching interviews with former Zephyrettes, a CZ diner steward, and the CEO of the WP, who was quite obviously still dealing with guilt for his role in putting the Silver Lady to death. To its credit, the film doesn't wallow in nostalgia -- it just tells the story, and does so even-handedly, without strident posturing or pointing fingers of blame. If you're in love with trains and would like to give a DVD to family and friends to explain why, this is it.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Item is okay, but ... August 31, 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I expected to see the trip that started in Chicago (or Oakland) and ended in Oakland (or Chicago), without cutting in to interviewing people, and various scenes. I have another California Zephyr video, and that one takes you to the beginning of this great ride starting at the Chicago station, through Denver, Reno, the Sierras, and ending in the Bay Area.

If you rather see a video like I just described, buy that one. Otherwise, I would not buy this video (CA Zephyr Silver Thread Through the West) at all. I would hope to find an Amtrak video that starts at Denver's Union Station and end in Grand Junction. The train ride traverses the Colorado River there.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars California Zephyr Silver Thread Through the West October 7, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This particular train video contains interviews with the men and women who actually worked on this elite Zephyr train in its trips from Chicago to the West Coast. Engineers, porters, hostesses, cooks....all were interviewed after many years of service. Business travelers as well as frequent tourists were also interviewed to give their perspective of the luxury of being a part of the California Zephyr experience. I feel that this DVD is a must for anyone who is considering spending a goodly amount to ride in the luxury of this train. The description of the DVD on Amazon's web site was spot on in enticing you to view the film(s) in preparation for taking the vacation of a lifetime to experience a train ride of a past era which still exists today. Enjoy!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Same train views March 20, 2014
Format:Amazon Instant Video
Too many railroad videos are the same. I appreciate the view of a long train from the outside is it passes by and the scenery but would appreciate more information and views of the passenger train interiors or a life on the train view. This one shows some such views which is nice but is much the same as other railroad videos. Here comes the train there goes the train which I could see at the railroad crossing.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great treatment of a wonderful train! February 28, 2014
Format:Amazon Instant Video
I enjoyed this video greatly as I rode the zephyr twice as a child, and had a great-uncle who worked for the D&RGW at the Moffat Tunnel for years. I learned much about the train & it's 3-road sponsors that I had not known before. Highly recommended for other train buffs.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good show February 10, 2014
Format:Amazon Instant Video
Well written and well presented history of a marvelous train. The story of the train and its people was a joy to watch and listen to.
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5.0 out of 5 stars very good December 8, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
informative and nostalgic I traveled it 3 times in the mid 60,s from Chicago to SAN Fr. by myself using travelers aid when I was 11, 12, & 13 saving my paper route money and visiting my family. I sat most of the time in the dome car front seat. Brought back memories. Very good.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good very interesting
Published 4 days ago by Carlos Salce
4.0 out of 5 stars A video showing the spectacular scenery of traveling by rail!
I step back in time to the rail travel hey-day! The scenery through the mountain areas makes me want to travel by rail to California rather than by plane!
Published 27 days ago by Gary Plumer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great scenery very educational
Published 3 months ago by Kevin Kiska
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth The Time
Well worth taking the time to watch. A look back at history. Sit back and watch a nice part of our nations history as it rolls across the country. A must see for train folks.
Published 3 months ago by Randy
5.0 out of 5 stars A 'must' for fans of American passenger RR history
Very well produced, scripted and narrated history of this classic passenger train and route across the midwest and west. A quality story and videography. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Robert S Ryczak
4.0 out of 5 stars A Chance To Re live the Golden Age of Rail Passenge Service
A very good documentary on the Golden Age of rail passenger service. A great history of what drove the competition, the great rail equipment, and spectacular service, during a time... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Larry Humberstone
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun for non-train buffs
An interesting slice of U.S.history and how Americans travelled before airplaines. Reminds you that there was a time when traveling long distances took days instead of hours and... Read more
Published 17 months ago by tantabee
5.0 out of 5 stars California Zepyhr
This movie is a documentary that describes the California Zephyr from its inception, until its demise. You also get to see the route it travelled over.
Published 19 months ago by Cynthia Carter
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story about a great train
I was lucky enough to take the CZ from Chicago to Oakland in 1953, at the age of eight. Just old enough to remember much of the trip, but not old enough for a camera,... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Bob401
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