Sunday, August 19, 2018

Session #12 Standard Gauge Ops August 18th

Saturday, August 18 saw us running diesel locomotives on the IPP&W and RP&M at Fred's place.

This gave me the opportunity to run my D&H GP38-2 for the first time this season even though we are already past the halfway point for 2018 operations.  This is due to the fact that I have been dispatching the layout for most of the standard gauge sessions and I haven`t been able to bring this diesel unit out.  I love the lightning striped blue, yellow and grey paint scheme found on D&H diesels.  

Brunt's Brewery and the B&O caboose help create a sky blue appearance to this scene which actually looks down from the sky above.
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Well, best not focus too much on my favourite locomotive.  Let's check out some of its brethren from other roads.
Malcolm has graciously provided video footage from this session at the link below.

Indeed, the colours abound.

CP has always had a lovely appearance in the maroon and grey scheme.

Even when weathered with road grime, she looks lovely.

CN's green and harvest gold is a showstopper in my books.

How about the Alco PA unit to the left.

Or, even the earlier black and gold of the CN.

Pre-ops, Brian and I sort out cars for Glen Hammond.

My crewmate, Ray, listens in on my passionate tale regarding my acquisition of said locomotive...thanks Gord!

Things are heating up in Nelson Yard as cars begin being spotted throughout the yard.

Glen Hammond cars have been set out.  Cheers, Brian!

And...cheers Bill!

Pat too!

Ray and Bill enjoy a laugh.

It's the pre-ops meeting and we already have six members seated in the penalty box!
That's Lawrence standing off in the distance with Moe seated beside him followed by Steve. Pat, Bernie, Bill and Dispatcher Doug.

Malcolm enjoys the morning sun.

Malcolm's head makes a great arm rest for me!

Ray, Brian, Garry and Chris are in the other team's penalty box pre-ops.

We are attentive listeners.

My good friend, Bill, enjoys his morning cup of coffee.

Lela, seated, always does a great job of sorting out the lost cars from earlier sessions while Fred offers a few points of wisdom.

With the greatest point of wisdom being..."Try one of these!"
Thanks, Steve!

Our weekly crew assignment list for both railroads, yardmasters and dispatcher.

Let's begin by examining the train Ray and I crewed.  We are aboard Train 327, a westbound originating in Glen Hammond.

Ray rolls through the notches as we begin to move slowly out of the little yard in Glen Hammond.  Before we departed, we had two setouts and four lifts to perform.

Given our green signal out of Glen Hammond we find our headend through the junction on IPP&W rails while our tail end is still on shared rail.  Moments later I will contact dispatch to advise that we are safely through the junction.

We are past Mercer and on our approach to Peter's Pond.

We have work to conduct up the Cedar Rock Branch so we will determine the juxtaposition of our setouts down in the pond before we head up the branch as there is no runaround capability up there.

All our setouts will be of the trailing nature in Cedar Rock.  This means that we will haul our traffic up the branch behind the locomotive.

Working the Cedar Rock Aggregates industry.

Let's head over to the western end of the railroad where we find 302 downgrade out of Firgrove.

Chris and Garry crew this train.  302 is holed up at Watkins Siding for a meet with 327.

We catch up with them on their approach to Nelson Yard.

Later in Spruce.

Chris's wife, Lela, is running with Brian on this morning.  We find them in Ironwood aboard Train 318.

Brian's F-unit is holding the honours on 318 today.

Much later in the day, Brian's Canadian Pacific cowl unit meets another CP brethren in the yard.

Lela and Brian terminate their second train here.  They will depart shortly aboard Train 313.

Here's Pat.

With crewmate Bill.

The two happy lads are commandeering Train 301 from Craig Leigh to Nelson Yard early in the session.

They are through Ironwood and are now in Spruce.

That's a handsome unit they are running.

Moe oversees the action in Spruce.

Earlier he was in charge of Passenger #2 out of Firgrove.

She's downgrade at the ledges.

Our westbound 327 freight is in the foreground while Moe's eastbound passenger train is in back.

The foliage along "The Ledges" makes for an interesting backdrop.

Entering Peter's Pond.

passenger #2 meets 327 which has protected itself.

Ray, the engineer for 327 and Moe the passenger train engine man.

Later, Moe finds his way into Spruce.

Then Glen Hammond.

What's this?

Train 15, ,the Pool Train in Nelson Yard?  Special dispensation would have to have been approved for such a move!  I heard Nelson Yard on the morning experienced many mysterious happenings with the Pool Train arriving there being but one of them!  More on that later!

RP&M crews work both ends of Nelson Yard before heading down to Rat Portage and destinations beyond later in the morning.

Malcolm and Steve crew one of the two RP&M trains.

What's this...Lawrence, the crewmate on the other train wishes to hold a discussion with his fellow RP&M employees.  More on that mystery later.

With "proper" orders in hand Malcolm and Steve cross the junction and begin their work in Rat Portage along RP&M rails.

Steve commands the locomotive.

Working near the Hamer complex.

Malcolm is all smiles.

Steve's Ontario Northland unit is a beauty.

Malcolm and Steve arrive the interchange area at Bell.

Where they meet Ray aboard his second train, Train 304.

The lads survey the situation at the Interchange.

They hold just west of the interchange for their opportunity to enter Bell.

Time to get to work.

Trains from both railroads work the western end of Bell simultaneously thanks to the advent of the new turnout at the interchange.

My train, 304, is drilling Brunt's Brewery in behind while the RP&M crew work the interchange tracks.

It's a hive of activity.

The activity is so well choreographed, that it is a joy to work in close proximity with the two railroads.

Aha!  We spot the other RP&M train in Glen Hammond.

Neil is the engineer.

Lawrence, in conversation with yardmaster Henk, is his crewmate.

Laughter abounds following some "interesting" moments.  Yardmaster Henk is all a-grin realizing he had given the two RP&M crews "each others" train orders.

With things finally figured out, they are on the roll.

Picture taken a few minutes earlier with the crew waiting.

And...a few minutes earlier...with the crew waiting!

All is well that ends well.

Like the other RP&M crew, they also help work the large yard at Nelson.

Nelson Yard with Bell off in the distance.

Rolling stock review.  Two reefers in Bell.

A new tankcar on the railroad.

A Baltimore and Ohio car at Hamer Manufacturing...or is that factoring?  Hehehe!

Later in the session, three cars at Hamer.

Hmmm...I had to look twice at the image...I can't quite figure out how three cars managed to fit at the two car industry spur.

I'm wondering if the guy with the big head...err...big hat had anything to do with it!

My good buddy, Bill.

Dispatcher Doug was pleased with the tidy dispatch board I left him from last week's session.

Let's check in on our yardmasters.  Bernie has just run down from Craig Leigh to Mount St. Helens.

Later in the morning he has the arrival tracks all aligned for my train, 314,  to enter the yard and terminate.

Bernie always has a smile for his incoming crews.

Over in Firgrove George checks his yard and train lists while Ray looks on..

He ensures all turnouts are aligned in our favour as we run around the train we just brought in and head over to the departure track to pick up our consist for our new train.

George ensures all the cars are ready while my affable engineer, Ray, awaits our clearance out of Firgrove as 304's engineer.

Videographer Malcolm captures his RP&M train as it travels downgrade our of Bell for Pratt's Bottom and Rat Portage.

Then he captures George on his run down to Bell.

Steve works the western end of Nelson Yard.

With his crewmate Malcolm.

While Lawrence and Neil work the other end of the yard on their RP&M train.

Henk, George and Fred.

Bill has arrived Nelson Yard and begs forgiveness from His Holiness Henk before he can enter the Pearly Gates and proceed into the yard.

Doug observes all of the antics from his perch in the dispatch hut.

Henk spreads his angel wings when he realizes once again that something is amiss in the yard for the third time this morning.  His diesel locomotive has gone AWOL.

After a few moments of conjecture and a lot of head scratching we shout over to Henk to check Mackenzie Lumber on the other side of the bridge...and sure enough...that's where his unit ended up.

Yessirree...Nelson Yard sure can create some fascinating moments for us all!

Catching up with my train.  Ray and I have completed our first run of the morning from Glen Hammond to Firgrove aboard Train 327.  We are now running back east as Train 304.  

We once again work the sidings in Bell.  We came in on Track 4 in order to set out and lift some cars from the interchange tracks.

With our work complete we have gained clearance directly to Peter's Pond.  Ray has our train underway while Bill looks on.  Three crews had just been working Bell simultaneously.

Out from Watkins Siding in behind Ironwood Brick.

Rounding the bend under Mount St. Helens.

Ray keeps an eye on things ahead from his perch in the engineer's seat.

We work Cedar Rock.

In the shade.

On the far side of Peter's Pond.

Coming down the branch we meet Train 15, the Pool Train.

304 meets 313 at Mercer Siding.

My happy engineer.

We await clearance from the dispatcher and the Nelson Yard master for permission to enter Nelson Yard.

Permission granted, we are on the roll.

Through Bellamy.

Into Nelson Yard.

Down a clear alley with our headlights showing the way.

With Train 304 terminated, we await to depart as 314 to Craig Leigh.
Ray, just to let you know...after I charged my battery back at home, the headlight works fine!

Bill and Pat are departing Nelson Yard aboard their second run of the morning, Train 311.

They arrive Track 3 in Bell.

Where they meet 304.

Bill awaits 304's departure before beginning his work in Bell.

Pat and Bill make an excellent crew.

As they work off in the distance at Bell.

Much later we find them on their third run with Train 328.

Taking a much needed rest in Mount St. Helen's.

Garry and Chris are found working Spruce with Train 319...but where is Chris the engineer?  Aha!  He's operating his train from his seat under the canopy in the crew lounge.

Garry ensures all spots and lifts are complete.

Before departing for a destination of Nelson Yard.

Brian and Lela have checked the cars on their train before departing westward with Train 313.

313 meets 304 at Mercer Siding.

Where it is always right hand running.

313 passes through Watkins Siding en route to Bell and their final destination of Firgrove.

The RP&M crew aboard their Ontario Northland Geep is spotted working the two interchange tracks at Bell.

With a few moves to go...

They start to make up their train...

Then they head back home along RP&M rails.

Arriving Pratt's Bottom.

Then, much later in Rat Portage with their locomotive turned once again.

There's a runaround track here.

Malcolm is uncoupling his cars at Golding Grains in Rat.

That's a lovely unit, Steve!

304 arrives Nelson Yard while Neil looks on.

His RP&M crewmate is Lawrence seated on the brick wall beyond the dozing Henk.

Neil discusses his next moves with Lawrence as Ray brings in Train 304.

Neil inspects his train before heading out of the yard.

Lawrence does a runby inspection as well.

They cross the junction.

Later they are spotted in Bell.

After completing their run, they arrive Nelson Yard.

The yard looks pretty clean to me.

My good buddy Bill enjoys the action.

At Nelson Yard trains continue to be made up and broken down.  Even the Pool Train is allowed in the yard for a very special diplomatic meeting of the minds.

Henk keeps things on the move in the yard.

With great expression.

His CP diesel is constantly on the move.

The western throat of the yard.

We catch up with the pool train in Peter's Pond.

Moe keeps the passengers happy.

Much later we spot the pool train outside of Spruce.

Meeting 314 in Spruce.

Station stop.

A beautiful depot.

We say goodbye to the pool train at Mount St. Helens.

Back at Nelson Yard, Ray backs our locomotive onto its train.

This will be our third and final run of the morning as Train 314.

The GP38-2 is named the Ralph Dipple in honour of one of our members who had passed away.  Ralph Yard back in Firgrove is named after this wonderful man.  I feel honoured to own this locomotive.

We're on the roll passing Fallentree Mine.

Approaching the trestle.

Through the iron.

Finding daylight.

Ray guides our train around the big bend at Lilly.

Emerging from Lilly.

We have some work to complete at Blockhouse.

In notch 8 upgrade to Spruce.

Arriving Spruce.

We have finished our work in Spruce and have backed out onto the main to offer an open siding for an opposing train.

Through Ironwood on our way to Mount St. Helens.

Switching the trailing sidings in Mount St. Helens.

On into Craig Leigh where Bernie has lined our approach for us as we snake through the turnouts.

It was a joy for me to run my D&H unit on this day.  This is my favourite livery used by the Delaware and Hudson on their diesels.  To see other paint versions the 7316 has adorned check out the two links below by copying and pasting the links into you browser.  While not as pleasing to me, the 7316 happily ran under these other colours.

Waiting for lunch.

Friends around the table.

It has been a pleasure for me to write this blog entry for the group to enjoy.

Bernie with his lovely wife, Jill.  Have fun in Calabogie!

Our head chef, Moe.

Our Master of Ceremonies, Fred.
Thanks so much for checking in!
Mike Hamer, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

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