No problems using Radio, NG LocoNet Portals worked good, SG LocoNet Portals good from Helix to Parkdale.
April 14, 2012
Crew: Gary, Gerry, Jacob, and Hal
March 10, 2012
Crew: Gary, Gerry, Hal, Tom and Parker
February 11, 2012
Crew: Gary, Gerry, Jacob, Barry and Hal
Due to the snow, Joker Jake took out the wedge plow and cleared the Salida to Porltand Loop, after finding a suitable locomotive.
Engineer Gunnison Gerry Glancy hooked up ol' reliable #456 and led out Train 315, "the Shavanno", from Salida in the early morning light under light flurries. Meanwhile, Engineer Burnham Barry hooked consolidation #347 to 7 C&S freight in Parlin, to deliver to Salida, with Train #352. BB managed to get the train to Marshall Pass, noticing that ole #347 barely had enough traction up the west slope, and there awaited the arrival of the Shavanno. Due to Glancy's expert handling of #456, the Shavanno was only slightly delayed when it ran afoul of the west switch leaving the snowsheds.
In Salida, Conductor Helper Hal Z. teamed up with Joker Jake (back from plowing the line) took Extra #68 to run the Portland Loop from Salida. Their day started with some switching boxes, gons and stock cars in the yard, before heading to Portland. Portland switching consisted of swapping some Cement hopper empties and loads, and returning. At Parkdale, stockcars were picked up and 2 empties were set out. The train pulled into Salida, and Jake and Hal swapped jobs and repeated the run.
#315 was turned in the Big Sky at Parlin, with the line temporarily out of action to Gunnison, and Engineer Glancy brought Train #316 back up Marshall Pass. Aligning the switches on the eastern slope of Marshall Pass caused some confusion, with some Lessons Learned below.
Train #352 terminated in the Salida NG yard where Burnham Barry switched the yard.
Eventually, the Shavanno arrived and after dispatching passengers with a stiff shove and a boot while passing the Salida depot, the passenger cars were parked on the garden track behind the scale house.
While Burnham Barry B picked up NG cars out of the yard with Train #351, Gunnison Gerry pulled the NG stock empties from the hole and built a train in the NG yard. West Salida had some cars switched out by Train #351 at the freight platform and Salida Coal Company. Barry then headed to Poncha Junction and switched a pair of cars at the freight house. Train #351 tied up for the day finally in Parlin.
The fall turn, Train #355, engineered by Gunnison Gerry, soon thereafter headed out of Salida to take the empties back to Parlin and destinations beyond on this snowy day, as the sun came out.
Through some mysterious quirk of nature, Burnham Barry suddenly appeared in Limbo to take the Ski Train (another mystery), east into Salida, switch the head end car, and then head off to the west and mysteriously return to Limbo.
Garfield Gary operated as Dispatcher and Salida Yard Master from the Salida Division Offices.
LocoNet Issues - It seems apparent now that we are picking up RF interference and are investigating ways to mitigate that. In the meantime, operations were conducted with RF and Std Gauge LocoNet disconnected, making operating a little inconvenient but not impossible.
Jacob and Gerry teamed up to take the Monarch Turn, Trains 477 (Salida to Monarch) and 478 (return). The day started with the crew hostling a pair of Blackstone K-27s from the NG roundhouse, watering and coaling. The crew then had to switch 12 empty gons in the NG yard before finally being able to depart Salida. The Blackstones have operating pilot couplers, which is required for the helper. Switch #5 on the mainline may need additional spiking because it was found to be slightly humped. The transition on the NG arrival/departure track also caused Loco #462 to derail, but this transition is scheduled for removal when the third rail is moved to the opposite side to accomodate a new DG/DG curved switch that will replace the current DG/NG curved switch. Trains #477 and #478 were able to water at Silver Creek tank.
Grant operated #351 NG wayfreight from Salida to Parlin, and also performed Salida NG switching. Blackstone C-19 #347 had some trouble negotiating Switch MP 216 in W. Salida, but the train seemed to encounter no other significant issues. The Freight Master at Poncha Junction had some words for the conductor, after his freighters had to walk across two yard tracks to start unloading two boxcars, until friendly service from Train #478 arrived and gave a quick switch of the cars to the freignt platform. #351 waited on the siding in W.Salida for #478. #351 watered at Grays.
Gary operated the eastbound #2 Royal Gorge with sleek new PS 85' coaches, which found difficulty negotiating the curve near the coal bin at Gorge, where wheel derailments occurred. Operations were restricted to continous running (Helix down for gap repair) so normal passenger stops and switching out the head end car for LCL shipments was the oreder of the day, running 2 loops.
Jacob ran the Fall Run, stock train #356, from Parlin to Salida. The train met #351 at Marshall Pass and watered on the east slope tank. The panel indicator flickered and polarity issues came up during #356 passing through the east siding switch at Grays. The train terminated in the Salida transfer yard.
Trains #352 Parlin Freight, #355 Fall Return and Extra 68 from Salida (Portland Loop) were not run.
Crews were instructed to use whistle commands for the day, and NG crews also used sound for water filling and when braking (downhill), which must have worked because there was a lot of noise all morning.
Dispatching was accomplished via station radios to the Dispact Office (Gary), who was at times roving. Trains were
also tracked using the magnetic dispatcher panel. Crews were generally given clearance up to the next station.