A vintage steam locomotive, number 844, pulled the UP150 Express into the city for a weekend of exhibits at the Amtrak station downtown. What made this such a special thrill for me because I was able to ride up in the cab of that big, beautiful steam engine. Near downtown, Houston Mayor Annise Parker replaced me in the cab, and was on board when the train arrived at the Amtrak station.
"It was cool being in the cab, but it was hot in there," said Mayor Parker. "The first railroad in Texas came out of Houston so Union Pacific and Houston have kind of grown up together."
One car of the train has been converted into a traveling museum, showcasing how the transcontinental railroad help build America.
The train is parked at the Amtrak station on Washington Avenue downtown, and will be open to the public Saturday and Sunday, free of charge, from 10am until 4pm.