When we were in Salt Lake City, we learned that our 11:30 pm train to San Francisco was delayed by over 8 hours (!) so we stayed another full night in Salt Lake City and caught the train when it finally got there just before 8 am.
The train was delayed for two reasons.
1) A drunk driver drove up the tracks and got stuck and then decided to take a nap there. Someone alerted the train so it was able to stop before it his the car, but it still took a long time to move the car.
2) A freight train in front of the Amtrak train de-railed and it took several more hours to fix that.
When we got on our train, we were alerted that the toilets in our sleeper car didn't work so we had to go to the next train to use the toilets. No big deal. Then the power went out.
The train stopped for an hour to try to fix the electricity and learned that one of the two train engines had stopped working. We were able to go for awhile on one engine, that we had to stop again to hook up to a new engine.
Then the train ran out of food...right before going through Donner's Pass...in the middle of a snow storm.
Mom and I got off at the Martinez train station (a few stops before San Francisco) around 1:30 am. We stayed with Aunt Micki in Concord, and interviewed a great mother-daughter team in Los Altos, and we kind of drove past San Francisco to get to Los Altos, but never really got to San Francisco.
Read more on our Los Altos mother-daughter duo!