didn’t think they could do it.
To get ready for this ops session, we had several Herculean efforts. First, we had Frank and Jonathan rebuilding the entire West Martin throat in one month. I mean, damn, this is overhand track laying. I know that these guys did a lot of make this happen (I could see the alarm toggle open and close remotely for their work sessions). So, in four weeks, they stripped the yard bare, put in more than a dozen turnouts, improved the flow into the critical west end (by double-tracking the leads), wired and tested it in. Steve put the board out in record time. And there you have it. March – crummy twenty-five year old throat. April – brand new yard that runs smooth as silk. Amazing.
Also, John and Peewee Shawn weighted, what, a couple hundred freight cars? There were issues last month and John allowed himself to be foolishly dragooned into the effort by me. And now most of the fleet is a lot more stable. And happily we could still get trains boosted over the Harris summit (with or without helpers). I haven’t had a chance to ask folks if it made a difference – that’s a follow up for the meeting.
So ops was fun. As always, there are all those little issues. For a couple of people, when it rains, it pours. Westbound passenger service (two movements) had all sorts of problems. In fact, at one point, every westbound train was in distress. It happens. Back in the DS office, I lapped a couple of warrants around Harris Glen – there were a couple of trains running in reversed order which could have resulted in a collision (but thankfully didn’t). But everything (except one passenger train) ran, and everyone seemed to have a good time.
But thanks to the MOW crews who did amazing work to get our layout moving in the right direction. And thanks for everyone coming out. After all, it would be no fun to dispatch if nobody was there.
I couldn’t ram trains into each other.