Join the crowds taking transit to the Seahawks (Photo from
Join the crowds taking transit to the Seahawks
(Photo from
Once again, the Seahawks have won home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs, and will begin their playoff drive this Saturday, at 5:15 p.m., against the Carolina Panthers.

In addition to the myriad of regular transit service, including frequent Link Light Rail service to and from the airport, the game will be served by special Sounder train service, and shuttles from Northgate Transit Center, Eastgate Park & Ride, and South Kirkland Park & Ride. Shuttle fares are $4 cash each way. You can also take Metro route 41 from Northgate, ST Express 554 from Eastgate, and Metro route 255 from South Kirkland.

Two Sounder trains will take off from Lakewood Station at 1:50 and 2:30, arriving at Century Link Field at 2:57 and 3:43. A third train will take off from Sumner Station at 2:37, arriving at the CLink at 3:19. North Sounder Service, weather permitting, will take off from Everett Station at 2:15 and 2:30, arriving at 3:14 and 3:29. The full schedule is available here.

New since last year is frequent service on King County Metro’s brand new Rapid Ride F Line, connecting to both Tukwila Sounder Station and Tukwila International Boulevard (light rail) Station, running past midnight.

As per tradition, trash talk against the home team is off-topic and will be deleted.

Update: samuel will be coming to the game on the ferry.

29 Replies to “All Aboard for NFC Playoffs”

  1. Am I to take it that you are referring to some form of sporting competition? :-)

    (Seriously, I don’t actually know what sport you’re talking about. What does NFC stand for?)

      1. Not actually the first result which comes up for NFC. (That would be “near field communication”, as Anandakos says.)

        I had kind of forgotten that the NFL was still divided into two conferences, let alone that the conferences still had separate championships. Not a sport I follow.

    1. Congratulations, you have telegraphed your cultural ignorance to the world, and I suppose you’re feeling superior about it.

    2. Near Field Connectivity. It’s specific to Seattle transit service to sporting events because the two stadia are directly adjacent.

    3. Martin, really? …superior about it. I look forward to your posts and comments, but this went off the rails.

      Better yet, most of you could have ignored his post. I don’t come here to read back and forth juvenile dribble.

  2. As is always the case with late-season sports transit, please, everyone, BE PATIENT. (More so than usual.) It’s stressful on the operators too, so the last thing they need is drunken fans shouting at them because they’re a few minutes late.

    Go Hawks!

    1. I always thought this would be a good way to make some money. Get some friends or family in on this, too. Drive a bunch of different cars up to a parking lot like at Tukwila that fills up quickly. Get there early, then wait. Soon, fans in cars wanting to go to the game will arrive, desperate to find a parking space in the now full lot. Then, see what people will offer to get to leave your parking space. Since this is a playoff game, I wouldn’t take less than $40 to move my car. Get a few friends in on this, and you’ve made several hundred tax-free dollars pretty quickly and easily. Plus, you get to help out some fans. Plus, you get to make some money off the agency that is making money off you. It’s a win/win/win.

      1. Wouldn’t your friends want to keep their $40 and not give it all to you? Or is it just so rewarding to be in your awesome shadow that they’ll do it for free?

  3. Is there any chance they’ll run any 4 car trains from stadium heading south after the game? Or run some extra 2 car trains?

    1. ST has regularly run extra trains (ca. every 5 minutes), and extra runs on select ST Express routes before and after large events.

  4. My takeaway is, don’t depend on the 131/132 or 26/28 Saturday after 2pm. It may show up sometime after the scheduled time.

    1. Yup.
      The good news is that One Bus Away *FINALLY* seems to be working again this morning on the 26/28/131/132 with some level of reliability.

    2. If it is like other playoff game days, then expect traffic (and bus schedules) to swing wildly. Before the game, traffic is snarled because of folks trying to get to the game. During the game, though, the streets are really quiet (as people watch the game on TV). Then after the game, the streets are really snarled. Even in neighborhoods that aren’t close to the stadium, people try and make their way home. It is similar to New Year’s Eve right after midnight (or closing time). Just keep that in mind if you are trying to catch a bus. I timed it wrong last hear and ended up walking for miles back home (I left towards the end of the game).

  5. Anyone from up there been to a Blazer game here, and willing to compare the MAX Rose Quarter routine that happens here with what happens at Sounders games?

    I don’t know as the only event I have been to at one of the Stadiums up there was some years back, before Link, and not something very well attended, so I haven’t any idea how the actual process works up there under actual crowded conditions.

    I really like the temporary ticket selling booths TriMet sets up on the platforms to sell return tickets for after the game. They almost completely avoid ticket machine lines this way – though I get a day ticket on those days so I don’t have to do that. I wish they would encourage more people (radio ads, etc.) to do it that way.

    1. I can’t comment on recent Blazer games (I actually went to one over the holidays but we drove), but maybe you’ll be able to compare your experiences there to my experiences at CenturyLink Field.

      I’m a UW season ticket holder and as such used the Link to go to their games at CenturyLink a few years back, and at the end of every single game I would walk up to the Pioneer Square station (two stops north of the stadium) to catch a southbound train. With the time it took me to get up there I would assume that at least one if not two trains had already headed south, and yet our train would still be at capacity after leaving the International District station. Sometimes people would try to push on at the Stadium, but the platform was still full after we left the station.

      (Also, longtime reader, first time commenter. Hi everyone!)

      1. TriMet seems to do OK, but I’m no season ticket holder. One of these days I should go there and watch the process.

        TriMet puts about seven or so people at the station. When a train gets to the station they hold it a few minutes until it is full. When the spotters don’t see any more empty space, or when the next train is visible and about a minute away (you can see pretty far to the east from the station, and speeds are slow enough on the Steel Bridge they have lots of warning) they let the sitting train go and the next train pull in.

        Other than the temporary ticket sales booths, the other change they make at the station is to set up barricades around the platforms to help control crowd movement.

        They seem to do a reasonably good job of flooding the station with red and blue line trains for about 20 minutes after the game is over. Going back from the last game I went to there were times I could see two headlights on trains east of the station while one was still boarding. Green line trains are quite a bit less frequent though, especially on weekend games.

        One advantage they have is they build the station with three tracks, so they could have a train waiting there until the game gets out. I don’t know if they use it or not. The old turnback at Galleria isn’t normally used now so they could store a few extra trains there.

        It seems like usually within half an hour the crowds are essentially gone. However, your arenas are much larger.

  6. Not to be a spoil-sport- even multi-billion dollar corporate ones which themselves considerable trash-doe anybody besides me wish that other civic events would fill this much public transit?

    Hard to know chicken-egg equation here, but would be refreshing if football or political gatherings- like voting instead of mailing-could sometimes trade ridership numbers with football. I don’t care which party- with each one to blame if they find themselves outnumbered.

    Fact that football currently leads our political process by a thousand miles isn’t football’s fault. Except that I’d hate to have Hawk-or Corn-cob-or Cheese-helmeted stormtrooper’s drag me away at midnight for mass Nuremburg style torchlight salute to The Coach!

    Same with poultry-related salary gap between physicists and coaches at universities. Might save a little taxpayers’ money if Coach and President were same job.

    Since publishing is a major industry in Gothenburg, hotels and Vasttrafik buses and streetcars have to brace themselves for annual festival in the fall. Shudder to think about IT or Amazon imitation in Seattle- daily pm rush in South Lake Union is bad enough. But trash-talk competition between opposing fans would be a chuckle or two.

    Still and all, grateful that transit’s only sports-related problems are crowding, which equal ridership, and un-Constitutional and one-sided trash talk bans in blogs. Could be worse. Some years ago, British police used to have to separate opposing fans after games and escort them to subway trains dispatched so hostile fans were never on same train.

    Would probably work to save innocent citizens from Amazon-Microsoft, “Harry Potter” -Self-Help riots here! Can we at least trash-talk L. Ron Hubbard? Hey, Martin: can “Yo mama dates John Travolta!” not be [OT] if they go to the Tom Cruise movie on LINK or ST Express?


    1. Speaking of other civil events, an ALCS playoff w/ the Mariners and if the SODO arena gets built, an eventual Stanley Cup playoff w/ Seattle’s NHL team.

      A National Democratic or Republican Convention would be interesting too, but I don’t believe the locals have the stomach for the possible demonstrations that would occur around it.

      1. Or based on dislike-most polls, the conventions themselves either.

        But a lot of hotel and restaurant revenues, in addition to transit ridership, might be saved if Chamber of Commerce sponsored an AD (Amalgamated Demonstrators) Convention.

        Events could be things like Tea Party Barrel Rolling, where guys in 1770’s hats jump on floating barrels and roll them like logs. Winner gets the tea out of the barrel into Elliott Bay the fastest. Reward could be personal stamp tax cut.

        And if weather obliges, a Ben Franklin sustainable pollution-free power from kite flying derby. Winner gets flag-draped urn. And aquatic races for people dressed in whale, seal, and walrus suits. Prize is choice of fresh krill, salmon, or herring.

        Two limits: Nobody yelling things and then everybody else yelling the same thing. And zero tolerance for vuvuzelas! But honor system and personal good taste should discourage plastic barber shop quartet straw hats with little US flags, and similar kinds of flag desecration.

        If it works, cities might actually compete for this one- which will have the added advantage of no dictates from overbearing sponsors.


  7. You didn’t mention it but I’ll be on the ferry. My favorite way of getting to the stadium.

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