Wilkes

January 10, 2020

OpsLog – L&N – 1/9/2020

his was my second of three sessions in two days at the always-enjoyable L&N, a two railroad layout with twin dispatchers and all sorts of dirty diesels lugging grimy coal cars. And hey, I scored my favorite seat – L&N Dispatcher, the widow maker job. Fortunately I was working with Tom Wilson on his Southern Desk – he and I really work well together (when he’s not holding Edison Jct for ransom). The interesting thing about running in a Protorails event is that you’d think everyone would be at game-top abilities for the session. Not the case, it seemed. Crews […]
February 2, 2020

OpsLog – L&N – 2/1/2020

idway through the session, the two dispatchers (Southern and Louisville & Nashville) switch. We’ve only got a couple of minutes to update our replacement on the status. I don’t know how it was exactly explained to me but it was something like “Train so-n-so is in Norton and will need to go to Blackwood” makes me think that he didn’t have a warrant. But that word “need” seemed to mean something different between Tom and myself. It turns out he actually did have a warrant and was waiting for other traffic to clear before he started down. Fresh on my […]
August 23, 2021

OpsLog – L&M – 8/14/2021

hat’s the worst thing you can hear when you are a dispatcher on John Wilkes’ L&M? Headlights? Ha. No. No, it’s when you are hanging around at 10am waiting for your ride-guy to show up and you get a call from another person attending today’s session. “Hey, Robert, where are you? We’re ready to start?” Ready to start? Start time was 10am? I thought it was noon! And it’s in Polk City, something like forty miles away. We’re in Orlando and haven’t even hit the road yet! What a way to not run a railroad. So I called my ride-share […]
January 8, 2022

OpsLog – VSW – 1/6/2022

‘ve got a friend who like to play psychoanalyze-games with me. All of her questions are pointed and reflective. Anyway, the other day she asked, “What was your greatest accomplishment for the week?” I didn’t even have to think that one out. “I got three trains by at Ramsey.” As mentioned in my other blogs, John Wilkes Virginia SouthWestern is a great railroad with two main lines. For the Protorails convention, I was invited in to  dispatch the L&N and Tom Wilson grabbed the Southern desk. Since the L&N has a higher density, we usually give the CTC panel (kinda […]
March 27, 2022

OpsLog – VSW – 03/26/2022

he third ops session in a week (starting with Night Ops last Saturday and Club Ops Wednesday), a great run of John Wilke’s massive and amazing Virginia SouthWestern. So this was an effort to get Orlando N-Trak to get out of its tiny clubhouse and into the larger world of Central Florida layouts. John was nice enough to open his layout for us; still, all sorts of problems, scheduling conflicts, people dropping out, a truck with three of us nearly breaking down on the side of the highway, everything going wrong. But once we got there, what a session! We […]