• Gardner Gawking

  • Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.
Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

Moderator: MEC407

  by jaymac
For 0320-0540/10-07-2019, there was more proof that trains -- particularly Q426/7 and 22K -- run on tracks and not on schedules. Things were quiet for me until 0329 and the D-3 side of a convo with AYPO -- more about which later -- and the announcement that D-3 would give the cab company a call.
0335 was the start of an exchange with Q426/7, fulfilling Form D G309 -- leader garbled -- and asking if 427 could make it to Still River or Pine Hill Road for their tie-down. Form D G302 to CSXT 5284 for MPX 25 to MPX 20 was made effective 0337, the usual request to advise of entry time into DCS being made -- 0339 -- and delaying the update until they were ready. D-3's 0358 update repeat got a bit eaten, but he did say 104 cars total, 8498 tons, and 6458'. To finish up with 427, I never did hear a new Form D get transmitted, and -- however selfish it might be of me -- I would not be among those who would witness 104 cars ever so slowly transit the the Temple Street/Rte. 140/MP X 7.8 or any other crossing.
Back to chronology: A bit after 427's Form D, D-3 advised AYPO with the 7623 that he had notified the cab company that the recrew would be at Town Farm Road. Musta been a short train, given that the Pleasant Street crossing is about 1/2 mile west.
Keen and attentive readers will have noticed that close to sufficient time would have elapsed for me to be at the 333 WLs, but a need to refuel changed priorities and routing, probably just as well since D-3 had advised EDPO with the 7595 that they would fit nicely between ???? and 330. Post refueling, the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT and the FG ELs were dark at 0356, the WLs, however, at Stop, musings about which to follow. The GL WLs would be dark and the 330 ELs and WLs at Stop. There were no EB headlights visible on the way over to the 333 WLs, dark at 0413, as would be the 334 1 stagger and 335s, the 334 ELs at Stop.
At 0421, there would be a D-3/FI-2 exchange, D-3 occasionally clear. Among the items discussed was a runaround between GL and 330.
Up Da Hill, the 345 ELs were at Stop, and a headlight was glancing along the side of racks on the #1. 0427 was when 22K's C asked the E to drop the 3 and test brakes, the test successful at 0428. The 345 2 WL was at Medium Clear, and the now-headpinned power was heading EB. There were racks on the #2 with general visible on Yard 1 through the gaps. Wells were on the #1 with more racks east of the MART garage. Before a short trip east for an offering of thanks, the House was eyeballed, no changes obvious. By the time i got near the 345 Dunks, the power was WB, NSs 4147, 9235, and 4078 heading back to their train. At the start of my straight shot EB, D-3 would ask 22K if they wanted the cab at the Jade, and they said the gas station. Dunno whether they were fouling 345 and/or 346. Not that it means anything, but I never heard a permission to leave 345 for 22K's new crew.
At 0441, there was a compromised-to-me FI-2 (distance) and D-3 (Mount Wachusett) exchange involving a signal at 330 and mebbe taking it before 0445 or waiting for 400.
At 0447, the 333 Controlled Siding WL showed a Medium Clear for 400, but there was neither sight nor sound of EDPO. At 0448, D-3 reached out to AY-3 with the 7534, mush now taking over. 400 was on the move on the advertised, a total of 3 flats and 1 bi plus the 1139 dropping the Medium Clear at 0451.At 0453, the WLs went dark, so EDPO was not near, and I was again EB.
Further east, 400's C OKd departing Fitchburg at 0459, and the 330.8 WBs would both at Clear -- no EDPO just east -- and the the 330 WLs at Stop. The GL Controlled Siding WL showed a Restricting and there were shorties -- no marker on the east end -- on 1 across from the platform. The 330 ELs were at Stop, part of the cause being KCIR 7523 and NewBlue 3400 coming EB on the Controlled Siding and dropping the WL at 0506, the FI-2 runaround continuing in progress.
I was EB at 0508 when FI-2's C called a Restricting for the GL EL and told the E they were good for 20. That was about the time the FG WLs were again at Stop, the early part of the FI-2 runaround probably the earlier cause of the FG WLs show=ing Stops.
Anyone thinking that the FI-1/2 parking spot would be -- like it had been earlier -- MT at 0510 would be -- like me -- wrong. KCIR 5948 was now there. Where it had been earlier and why the the 7523 and 3400 were now subbing for it dunno.
0517 was when I did know that the EB staggers for Derby were dark, and 0519 was when I also did know that AY-4 was doing car countdowns, proof for the rest of my trip that the scanner was working.
EDPO? Back to Dunno Mode.
  by 690
5948 is currently trapped on the Freight Main East after the derailment the other day, that’s why FI-2 was using the 3400/7523.
  by jaymac
690, thanks.
Troubles on FME would explain why the shortie runaround took place at the platform instead of on FME.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0517/10-09-2019, things were primarily of the heard variety, starting at 0330 with a D-3/AY-6 convo, D-3 advising that they were to take an engine and 41 Deerfields on FMW plus 2 cars on air on FME, the latter changing to playing it by ear after whatever AY-6 said. D-3 then switched to 22K, advising that there was an EB freight ahead that they'd follow, cross over, and then hold at Slab City. AY-3 with the 7443 was next, getting authorization to enter the #1 and go east to 312. More about AY-6, 22K, and AY-3 will follow.
0347 was when D-2 advised DOBO there were no changes to the Speed Summary, rogering whatever DOBO then said, and 0350 was when the 333 WLs were dark, followed in the usual intervals by Stops on the 334 ELs and darkness on the 1 stagger with more darkness on the 335s.
In a series of convos with AY-3 that ended at 0402, D-3 advised they'd hold at 312 for the EB mentioned earlier to 22K, floating the possibility to AY-3 of going to South Track cuz AYPO would be starting their double and had 1 hour and 10 minutes left, and then discussing the Camp and Moores. 22K was next, getting the word they would be staying on 1, but still holding at Slab City. AYPO will also join the More About Queue.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were and would remain -- for my short stay -- dark. Yard 4 was pretty much FP-FP with racks. Yard 2 was FP-FP with general east to Royal Steam Heater and then racks east. No reflections emerged, so dunno if A) there were no loads left by 22K or B) the loads had been buried. Things remained unchanged on the House.
The post-offering straight shot EB was quiet, at least to me, and at 0423, the 333 WLs were again dark. On the subject of dark signals, the 50/50s by western River Street have been more than dark for years. They've been gone. Despite their nonexistence, their memory will linger. It seems there are no plans to change the name of the 50/50 Diner.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and a Clear for 2. The 330 1 WL had a Slow Approach and the 330 ELs were all Stops. so AY-6 was not a near-term presence.
The FG WLs were dark, and at 0438, the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT. Remember the promised repaving of Summer Street? Well, I got detoured onto Whalom Road and took Rte. 13 South. At the North Street lights, crews and equipment were standing by --for 0500? for 0600? -- ready to do what paving crews do.
D-3 got heard again at 0445, asking AY-6 if San-Vel was MT, there being 1 car on the 1. AY-6 was clearer than D-3, so they musta been outta sight in East Fitchburg. At 0447, there were AY-4 sounds,, and at 0447, D-3 241d AY3 1 east at WL to 1 FM, advising that AYPO's C was doing the paper work and they'd be leaving shortly.
After some more AY-4 activity, D-3 and Q427 convoed, Form D G304 to CSXT 47mebbe8 being fulfilled at 0500 and it sounding like D-3 acknowledging them off the territory.
At 0503, D-3 would reach out to AYPO, advising he was ready to copy. A Zombie Zone was entered by me, so the read-back was largely lost, but given the hazmat info, there woulda been at least 79 cars, and there was a clear 6824' for stretched length. 0511 was when D-3 told someone -- AY-3? -- he'd rather have them return to the yard.
What happened at 0515 prompted a little longer listen -- AYPO with the 7595 called out a Stop for WL. By 0517, D-3 advised they'd be holding for 400 who was outta Shirley. Dunno where AYPO might stop, but unless they'd recrewed in the interim, pretty much all the earlier-announced 1 hour and 10 minutes was gone.
Wow! "50/50 Diner," "San-Vel," and even "Slab City!" The old terminology persists!
  by jaymac
Adequate caffeine and nutrition are recommended in preparation for the following.

For 0325-0610/10-11-2019, there was -- as the timespan would indicate -- much activity. O626 was when D-3 fulfilled Form D G303 For TCT 669 -- a tamper iirc -- cuz they were east and clear of CPF-Derby on 1, coupled with a request to advise when they were east and clear of CPF-AY, more -- as you might guess -- to follow.
In another few the reach-out was to Q426 with CSXT 3408, OKing them into Ayer yard, requesting a job briefing with AYPO, and saying the power swap would be at Harvard Switch. There'll be more about Q426 later, but that was last I heard to, from, or about AYPO, let alone POAY.
0347 was when ED-9 answered D-3 and gave a 1x55, 2202 ton, and 3471' update, getting an OK on signal indication at FG. Yes, more will follow for ED-9.
Over the next few, TCT 669 would be the focus of activity, calling east and clear of CPF-AY on 1, getting a garbled 241, and then at 0354 getting their Form D G304 fulfilled. There was more, but Mount Wachusett was now in the way.
With Q426 and AYPO and mebbe even AY-4 occupying tracks in the Hill Yard, it kinda seemed like there might not be much room for 22K, but there was -- at 333. NSs 9479, 9914, and 1090 plus racks, wells, and tables were sitting dark on 1 and facing 9-for-9 reds on the WLs at 0358. At 0359, D-3 would 241 ED-9 with the 7541 1 to 1 at FG. The direction? East, which was a puzzlement, given that both an update and OK to proceed on signal indication had been given earlier. Things were 6-for-6 reds at 334 and 12-for-12 reds at the 335 ELs and WLs, the 22K marker about 200' west of the the ELs. Imprecision Scheduled Railroading sure seemed to be having a knock-effect for the PAS part of PAR/S.
Up Da Hill, it was 6-for-6 reds on the 345s, a presumed EDPO sitting on # 1, the marker about midpoint on the Timpany Boulevard UGB, The leader(s) was (were) a bit west of the WLs and obscured, but KCIRs 7575 and 7545 were visible further west. Through the gaps, racks east and general west were visible, amount and tracks uncertain, The sole surviving entry in the Sameoldsameold Ledger was the House's brush-cutter, the burned-out rack and tank having either gone elsewhere or energized cloaking devices.
An offering of thanks was made, and the trip down Da Hill was generally quiet until the 0437 fulfillment of 426's Form D G302, 0438 being the time effective for G305 to 427 with CXT 5284 from X25 to Burncoat. The update was 24x39, 4024 tons, and 3895'. To save suspense, naught further would be heard to, from, or about Q427 -- including the requested time into DCS -- let alone seen.
At 0440, the 333 WLs and easterly congestion were still holding back 22K, but the Controlled Siding was showing a Medium Clear, 400 not far in there future.
Further east, a reversal of direction took place cuzza non-Ciment-Québec shorties -- among others -- WB by the site of the former 50'50 signals. At 0453, I got to 333 and D-3 got the train and crew info for the now EB 400 -- 1632 control cab, total of 3 coaches, the 2013, and 0350 on duty, 0454 began an D-3/22K convo, initially an OK on signal indication. The 1 WL went Approach at 0456, and air continued to be pumped off. At 0500 came yarding instructions -- 3 to 2 to 1, racks to San-Vel, and the word that 1 was in the process of being cleared. The 1 WL had gone to Clear and 22K was bright and on the move at 0504, 14 racks and a total of 110 well and table positions getting east at 0509. There were a coupla MT positions early on, but the last 57 were bare.
0511 was when the east got both bright and loud, the WB doing just that. NewBlue 7552, KCIR 7620, and NewBlue 7635 -- guess I'd misheard "7541" -- getting some Brand X gons and hoppers, the unbranded shorties, TBOXs, and even a Smurf by. I hadn't kept car-count, but the appearance of slurries and MT bulkheads meant this wasn't an ED-9. The now--presumed POED was west at 0519.
Further -- again -- east and after a refueling stop, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear and the 330 WLs were at Stop, the ELs just the same, and -- at last -- ED-9 with the correctly-heard 7541 and fellow KCIR 7534 doing just that on 1 at 0534.
The FG WLs were also at Stop, the route not yet in for 402 and ED-9 doing the shunting. At 0540, dark, solo, and west-facing KCIR 5834 was in the FI-1/2 parking spot Minute later would come sounds from AY-4.
The EB staggers for Derby were dark at 0546, and excepting yarding sounds from 22K at 0550 and some later garble, things were quiet for the balance of the trip, which was good cuz your eyes and my fingers hurt.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0515/10-14-2019, there was some reduction in what was heard, but a fair amount to see. Early on, the signal/noise ratio favored the uninformative, that changing at 0330 when D-3 reached out to AYPO with the 7655, unfavorable topography rendering further near-term Yard Channel receptions as mush. More about AYPO will follow.
At 0339 and on, there came some scratchy car countdowns, probably from FI-2, who would be seen and heard later, unlike AY-3 or AY-4, naught to, from, or about whom would be heard.
At 0346, the 333 WLs were all at Stop, a dark 22K with dark NSs 3626 and 3617 pretending to be frozen elephants. There were a half-dozen or so racks, and then the wells started, extending past the all-Stops 334 ELs and 1 stagger, the marker mebbe 200' east of the 335 ELs, which joined the WLs in being at Stops. Oh yeah: The tie-handler is still in the 335 lot, and the lot was also where FI-2 -- more about which later -- asked D-3 for a signal at FG, that at 0355.
Things had been quiet on the way up Da Hill until 0403 when it became clearly clear that EDPO was working Gardner. The 345 ELs and WLs were at Stop, and there were 2 sets of visi jackets and headlights on the Timpany Boulevard UGB, so if I wasn't seeing double, it was probably a training trip. C1 and C2 were doing what they needed to do so the E could move KCIR 7585, NewBlue 3400, and KCIRs 7627 and 7620 -- some familiar numbers there -- further east onto 2 in the yard, 4 had general, and the Extension had a solo CN box. Attentive readers will note that no racks have been mentioned and will also remember that only a small number of racks had been seen at 333. Dunno if there might be racks further west on EDPO or if an ED-8 might be bringing them. EDPO was being paid for their time in Gardner, but I wasn't, so I was EB after making an offering of thanks, the only EB sounds being EDPO for as long as they were in range.
Today being a normal-schedule holiday, the 333 Controlled Siding WL showed a Medium Clear at 0427, 400 still 20+ minutes in the future, but 22K was still in suspended animation, and to save suspense, naught further to, from, or about 22K would be heard during the balance of my trip.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and Stop for 2, the 330 WLs and ELs all at Stop. The GL and FG WLs were dark, and at 0441, KCIR 5948 was hauling stuff WB on East Side, FI-2 providing some audio input while they stayed in range. At 0442, D-3 would reach out to EDPO, unfavorable topography again producing unfavorable further reception.
At 0449, the EB staggers for Derby would be dark, and at 0451 and on the northern end of 190, came "7.8," just "7.8" Dunno if AYPO was still in the yard, but probably either 426 or 427 was well west, so mebbe 22K had been uncrewed and not just waiting for the yard to open up. There was an additional D-3 garblefest involving AYPO at 0454.
Some info would come in a bit , 0508 being D-3's fulfillment of 427's Form D G301 to CSXT 2778. D-3 asked if they were tying down at New Bond, asked for a repeat -- neither of which I heard -- and thanked them.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0515/10-16-2019, there was some strangeness, starting at 0326 with garble on the dispatcher side of Channel 1, this in an area normally clear for both D-3 and D-2.
0332 was when the 7.8 came on, strange since naught had been heard or seen at the usual spots a few earlier, and 0336 was when the no defects got pronounced. It was 427, more about which later. In another few, there was a both-sides-garbled D-3/FI-2 exchange about Deerfields and Track 9, hinting that FI-2, more about which later, was to the east. 0349 was when a breaking D-2 told POED something about a recrew somewhere, and to save suspense, naught further would be heard to, from, or about POED -- or EDPO or ED-9, for that matter.
A minute later, a garbling D-3 would give AY-3 with the 7535 permission east on the #1, other deets lost to me.
0351 would show that the 333 WLs were at Stop, but instead of 22K holding , it was in the process of running through on 1, the 29 MT tail positions and marker east at 0354. As later observations will indicate, the pre-drop aspect musta been a Medium Clear. At 0357, D-3 would advise FI-2 to leave the engine on 4 after setting off their cars on 9, ask if 0445 was too early for their cab, and roger whatever the response was. A minute later, the 333 WLs would go dark.The 334 ELs would be at Stop, the 1 stagger and 335s dark.
There was some non-decipherable garble on the way up Da Hill, where the 345s were and for however long would remain dark. 0411 was the fulfillment time for Form D G301 to CSXT 3405, D-3 rogering whatever 427 next said. Yard 2 had loaded racks and Yard 4 had general west and racks east. The Extension still had the CN box, and the House still had the brush-cutter.
The post-offering straight shot EB had D-3 at 0421 OKing 427 outta the territory and asking for a call when that happened and then acknowledging that AY-3 was lined and locked normal.
At 0429, the 333 WLs were dark, and D-3 acknowledged that 22K's recrew was on board. Further east, the 330. 8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and Stop for 2, normally a hint that 400 might be routed for 2, but not today. The 330 WLs and ELs were all Stops, at least partially cuz 22K was stopped on 2. From 0440 and on, there would be sounds of AY-4 being active. They probably were before, but that's when the sounds first reached me.
Even further east, the Stops on the FG WLs changed to a Limited Clear for 1, and NSs 9479, 9914, and 1090 -- more familiar numbers -- were holding a bit west. What was missing from this still life? Racks, at least just west of the power. Never heard yarding instructions, so mebbe midtrain?
It should not be strange that the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT at 0446. In happy news, the Summer Street/North Street repaving is complete except for lane markings. Even better, there are no Dig Safe lines on the new pavement. Yet.
0452 was when the EB staggers for Derby were dark, and the rest of the trip was largely garble, except for D-3 setting up AY-3 to get in the yard and hedzupping AY-4 about that.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0515/10-19-2019 -- yes, a Saturday trip to replace the missed Friday trip -- there were some expectable changes and more proof that timing is everything.
At 0338, there was D-3 garble to POED -- more about which later -- that included asking if they could put the stretchers on 2. Where? Dunno.
0349 would bring car countdowns from 22K, a reliable predictor of the 0351 darkness on the 333 WLs. The 334 ELs would be at Stop and the 1 stagger dark, but a bit later the 335 ELs and WLs would be at Stop, suggesting that a WB might just have gotten west.
Rethinking of that conclusion would come at 0400 with a both-sides-clear D-3/EDPO-with-the-7898 convo saying that after they were east of the Willows they should hold at the Milling, EDPO clarifying that as being clear of Wagon Wheel, D-3 then saying they'd be on 1 and that he'd talk to D-2 about POED, Then at 0402, D-3 would advise EDPO to continue to Graniteville. Since there's about 1/2 mile between the willows and the Milling/Wagon Wheel, it was probably relatively short EDPO not yet on the block for the 334s, but east of the 335s by the time I got there. Favorable signals woulda meant nothing got called.
On the way up Da Hill, the sounds were more 22K car countdowns and naught else. The 345s were and would remain dark. There were rack loads on Yard 1 and the Extension, more racks on Yard 2, and naught visible to me on Yard 4, The Sameoldsameold Ledger's sole entry was the House's brush-cutter, the CN box being who knows where.
The post-offering straight shot EB featured some garble, But there was clarity at 0419. D-3 first reached out to AYPO saying something about a Form D, and then calling 0419 as the time that Form D G301 to Q427 with CSXT 3707 was fulfilled. When I was getting into my car just before 0320, there had been crossing noise for either the 7.8 or 6.0, so mebbe a recrew had happened in the interval dunno. There was more convo, but I had driven into Mount Wachusett's electronic shadow by then so dunno what got said. Also dunno any more about AYPO, but who knows, given both topographic challenges and stopping later for a refueling. Given EDPO's length lack, whether there might be a marriage with AYPO is an interesting unknown.
There was major garble for an extended D-2 convo, the little clarity being a Line 12 for 294.07 -- Livingston Street in Tewksbury. Whether this was for POED or a local dunno.
At 0424, the 333 WLs would be dark, and further east and after the already-mentioned refueling stop, the 330.8 WBs would both be at Clear and the 330 WLs and ELs at Stop. The GL and FG WLs would be dark, and at 0441, dark and solo KCIR 5948 was in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and at 0447, the EB staggers for Derby were dark.
22K's continuing countdowns would provide continuing proof -- there being naught from any of the AYs -- that the scanner was functioning.
Oh yeah, it being that time of year, a message board at the start of 190 SB is urging us to do the obvious -- be aware and break for moose.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0545/10-21-2019, much seemed outta sync, starting at 0320 with the tail end of a D-3 convo with Q427, asking them to let him know when they were west and clear of Barbers, that being acknowledged by D-3 at 0329. The CSXT power ID got lost, but Y333 was included in the movement ID. It probably has happened even earlier, but that was the earliest I've heard of 427 being off the property.
There was occasional Yard Channel hash, the next semi-clarity coming at 0350 when D-3 told AY-3 that 22K was at San-Vel -- !?!?! -- and he'd take AY-3 up to 312 with a wait until 22K was in San-Vel. At 0351, the 333 WLs were dark, and a few seconds after that, D-3 would acknowledge that 22K was in San-Vel and the the #2 was lined and locked normal.
The 334 ELs would be at Stop and the 1 stagger and 335s dark. There was 0358 D-3 garble on Channel 1, so mebbe West End?
Up Da Hill, the 345 ELs and WLs were at Stop. Yard 2 had rack loads pretty much FP-FP, at least the westerly stretch of Yard 4 had general, and the brush-cutter continued to be a House guest.
Post offering of thanks and along with the observation that the 345s were still at Stop, a short trip west was undertaken, and at 0420, the 346 WL was dark. Being somewhat in the area, a short diversion was made to the north side of the still-OOS Pleasant Street OHB, where an actual Volvo excavator was sitting inside the barricaded work area, so mebbe some time in 2020?
On the way back EB, the 345s had joined the 346 WL in darkness, suggesting that there had been an EB, more musing about which later. On the straight shot EB and just before entering Mount Wachusett's electromagnetic shadow, D-3 asked AY-3 if they'd be going West Wye, immediate developments unheard.
in more message-board news, there was 1 on Rte. 2 WB advising that Exit 25 -- Rtes. 2A and 140 -- would be closed on 10-23 for road work. No mention if it would be for more than 1 day.
At 0441, the 333 WLs were on with a Medium Clear for the Controlled Siding. In keeping with the earlier-than-usual theme, 400 was already at the platform. 0450 would see a total of 4 flats and 1 bi plus the 1127 get on the move, the 333 WLs going dark at 0455, Mebbe the EB was holding at 335, but in 35+ minutes, they hadn't gotten far enough east to shunt the 333s.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear, and the the 330 WLs and ELs and GL WLs at Stop, and there was an EB marker holding on 1 up by the GL WLs that had just gone dark, 400 far enough east.
Over at FG, the WLs were at Stop, KCIR 7605 and NewBlue 7518 in full compliance on the 1. Just to the west were double-stack dirty-dirt tables, indicating this was mebbe an EDPO and hinting that mebbe the other possible EB was an ED-8. At 0511, KCIR 5948 was dark, solo, and facing west in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and at 0514, a topographically compromised D-3 adised someone -- 22K? -- they's be holding for 400 to go by and then go in East Wye. An acknowledgment that the #2 was lined and locked normal gave weight to the probability of it being 22K. 0518 was when the EB staggers for Derby were dark.
In a message board correction, the 1 on the north end of 190 SB advises us to brake -- not break -- for moose.
Things were generally quiet for the rest of the trip, a breaking D-2 asking POAY at 0543 if something was still working,
As of 0545, AY-4 would not be among the heard.
  by jaymac
Adequate cervical restraint is advised for any ballistic head-shaking that may follow.

0315-0525/10-23-2019 was active and not just with rainfall. 0518 was when the 7.8 advised me that -- no defects and transmission over -- I would not be losing an irreplaceable chunk of my life on the wrong side of the crossing. Things were quiet until 0339 when only "Rule 241" escaped a spell of garble.
About 5 later and thanks to the coincidence of antenna elevation and no intervening land mass came both sides of a D-2/AYPO convo. The recrew was on board at NC and D-2 issued Form D G202, Line 12ing Meadowcroft and Middlesex Streets. Increasing distance and less favorable topography lost both the read-back and time effective. But dag! Power at NC heard from just east of 333!
0349 was the time D-3 called for fulfilling Form D G301 to Q427 with the CSXT 3329, they being west and clear of Burncoat, D-3 then acknowledging that they were off the property. That was also the time that the 333 WLs were dark, the expectable sequence of 334 ELs at Stop, the 334 1 stagger and 335s dark, all at the usual intervals.
On my way up Da Hill, D-3 asked FI-2 how long it would be before they headed west, rogered their response, and next asked them for a count of Deerfields on Freight Mains East and West.
Up Da Hill, the 345 ELs were at Stop and the 345 1 WL at Clear, Loaded racks were on the #2 and it looked like the yard might be MT, but the racks, rain, and fog combined to limit the view. The lower lot had a dozen or so cyclone fencing panels and an accessorized Hitachi excavator. Dunno if there was a connection between the fencing and what was now keeping the brush-cutter company on the House, but there was a burned-out rack on the easterly end of the House. Dunno if THE burned-out rack was back again, but there were no Google entries for "gardner rail car fire" since 09-10. I did warn you.
The post-offering straight shot down Da Hill had some static, but naught intelligible, and the 333 WLs were dark at 0429.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs were both at Stop and the 330 1 WLs at Slow Approach. Bare wells were visible at the Bike Shop/Zeda's, accounting for the earlier Stop on the 330.8 2 WB.
At 0437, a D-3/22K convo started, D-3 advising that that the original plan was still in effect -- 3 to 2 to 1, power back to 2. Priorities became getting to FG before 22K left, so a swing by the platform to see the 330 ELs was dropped. Over at FG, NSs 4210 and 8010 were looking at a Clear on the 2 WL as the air got pumped. Racks hadn't been mentioned in the yarding instructions cuz there -- again -- weren't any. Things were on the move at 0440, 79 loaded well and table positions and however many bare well and table positions east of the FG WLs at 0445. During the pass in review, AY-4's car countdowns got heard.
The brush by the fencing at the gym had worked against an accurate count of 22K's MTs in the darkness, and darkness was what occurred on the WLs at 0447, 0448 being when the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT. At 0450, a badly-breaking D-3 reached out to AY-3, things sounding like they'd get a cab at the Pine Tree.
3 more minutes produced more favorable topography for clarity in another D-3/22K exchange. They were close to dropping Derby, so they'd hold at Slab City for 400 to get by. As I was pulling under the Main Street/Rte. 13 UGB, 22K MTs were pulling over it, and the EB staggers for Derby would show an Approach for 1 and -- naturally -- a Stop for 2. 22K's marker was east of the platform at 0456, and the 1 stagger had gone to Clear, so mebbe FI-2 had gone west while 22K was going east.
At 0511, D-3 reached out to AY-3 to confirm that the switch was lined and locked normal and that the cab was called for 0545. A minute later, D-3 reached out to AY-6, asking if they were at 312 and ready for their runaround. Contact was not immediately made and dunno what happened, topography again interfering.
As frequently happens, AY-4 at 0524 got the last words -- "Drop the 3, and back then up."

Edited to refer to Al LaPierre's http://photos.nerail.org/s/?p=253557 of 10-22 showing the hulk and excavator, the excavator with shears and a magnet for cutting up the hulk and contents on site. Question; Where had the hulk been?
  by Backshophoss
Believe that was the auto rack that caught fire a few months back,written off and to be scrapped including the cars on board,
nothing to salvage
  by PBMcGinnis
Yup, the burned out autorack was cut up on the spot today. Including the Dodges inside.
  by jaymac
0320-0520/10-25-2019 presented some posers. At 0326, D-3 reached out to 22K with NS11?? saying that AY-4 had said Track 1 was clear, so it was 1 to 2 to 3, adding that the Crew Office told him that the cab -- presumably to assist -- might not be there for when D-3 ordered it. Racks -- more about which later -- were not mentioned.
There would be some intervening static spells, and at 0341 -- while I was well NB on 190 -- the 7.8 came on. 0345 would be when the 7.8 came back on, but increasing distance cost the rest of the report. Spoiler Alert: As will be seen, 427 did make it OK.
At 0355, the 333 WLs were dark and a breaking AYPO with the 7389 reached out to D-?, naught further heard by me. The 334 ELs were at Stop and the 1 stagger and 335s dark. Well, almost dark: Given the blues and yellows and equipment by the convenience store at State and Bathrick Roads, it seemed like a water-main break was in process.
There was some unattributable garble on the the way up Da Hill, the 345 ELs showing a Clear for 1 with Stops on the WLs. There were rack loads on Yard 1 onto the Extension and more loads on Yard 2. It looked like 4 had at least a few dirty dirts on the west. The sole entry in the Sameoldsameold Ledger was the brush-cutter on the House, but now things got interesting. In line with PBMcGinniis's of 10-24, the hulk was gone, but the excavator was still there and enclosed in a perimeter of the fencing panels that had been staged on the ground early on 10-23. How big was the perimeter? The entire lower lot. Kinda wonder if the hulk had been spotted north on the Heywood during its absence from the House.
But wait! There's more! KCIRs 7517 and 7500 were sitting dark on the #2 across from the Jade lot. Given that racks hadn't been mentioned in 22K's yarding instructions and equally given FI-1/2's occasional use of 2 units, mebbe FI-1 would be hauling some racks EB outta Gardner.
Back to more concrete observations: 0414 was the time that D-3 fulfilled Form D G301 to Q427 with the CSXT 3085, they being clear not only of Burncoat but also New Bond and Barbers, D-3 adding that he was glad they made it safely to Worcester.
The post-offering straight shot down Da Hill had a few garbles, and at 0432, the 333 WLs were dark. Further east and after refueling, the 330.8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and a Stop for 2, the 330 2 WL at Slow Clear, and the GL and FG WLs dark. At 0446, 22K's yarding transmissions were heard.
At 0448, there were 2 -- mebbe more -- WB units obscured by trees east of the FG ELs -- ED-9? POED? -- and the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT. Whatever the WBs were, they already had a Clear on the 345 1 EL. A few later, activity in the RVJ lot eliminated a good angle on the EB staggers for Derby, and at 0456 clearly IDable AY-4 activity was heard. The same could not be claimed for AY-3.
Only garble provided audio input for the rest of the trip.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0520/10-28-2019, some unusual sights and more unusual sounds provided the input.
Things were quiet until 0325 when D-3 OKed somebody -- AY-3? -- on signal indication at WL. Quiet and some static provided the next few minutes until a series of D-3/22K-with-the-NS-1173 exchanges that temporarily ended around 0345. Among the broken receptions were a signal being put in at FG, 330, racks, and a cab to the Fitchburg commuter platform. At 0348, there was more D-3 -- almost completely garbled, thanks again to Mount Wachusett -- sounding like it involved Hill Yard.
0351 was when the 333 WLs were dark, and 0354 was when D-3 called 22K east of 330. Things were the usual to the west -- the 334 ELs at Stop and the 334 1 stagger and 335s dark.
There was occasional static on the way up Da Hill, finding the 345s dark. Yard 4 had general on the easterly part that included dirty dirts, IHB and NS coil cars, and SSEX open hoppers. Covered hoppers were on top of the Yard 1 switch and east onto the Extension. The House still had the brush-cutter, but had also picked up a tie-handler and carry-car. The excavator was gone from the lower lot, and the perimeter panels had been taken down and were stacked and awaiting removal along with weight bags.
The post-offering straight shot EB showed the Aubuchon flagpole bare, maybe the "Building Available" sign a clue. There were a few bursts of static, 0424 being when AY-4's car countdowns were clear.
0426 was when the 333 WLs were still dark, and further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and Stop for 2. The 330 WLs and ELs were all at Stop, and if the visi gear and headlight were valid clues, there was a crew member at the Fitchburg platform although there was no marker visible to the east in 2. FI-2 got heard, and the FG WLs were all at Stop, standing wells from the west extending east to the power that was obscured over by the FG ELs. At 0444, FI-2 with an illegible KCIR 5??? was shoving east on West Side in back of 1 -- mebbe 2 -- racks.
0451 was when the EB staggers for Derby were dark and also when D-3 fulfilled Form D G305 to Q426, Dunno if it was a 10-27 Form D or if things had been unusually busy post-0001 on 10-28. D-3 confirmed that CSXT 3296 would be the leader for 427 and said he'd get them to Worcester. 0501 was when D-3 hedzupped 22K that 400 was coming to 330 and next hedzupped 400 about 22K.
Now came the strangest sound of my trip -- POAY called out to D-3 -- POAY with CSXT 3296. There followed a broken convo about doubling, a job-briefing with the CSX crew, and 18x21 Barbers. Dunno when 427 would get its Form D, the balance of the trip featuring a mix of AY-3 and AY-4.
  by jaymac
For 0320-0530/10-30-2019, more puzzling sights and sounds would fall like the rains from the heavens.
At 0321, Q427 reached out to D-3, increases in both distance and topographical challenges making only the D-3 side of things somewhat intelligible. Form D G301 was called fulfilled at said 0321, D-3 asking if they off the property or tying down at New Bond, andthen acknowledging that they were clear of the property at that time. The CSXT power ID got to me as hash.
Things were generally quiet until a 0334 AY-3/D-3 exchange, 241ing the 7541 1 at AY east to 1, D-3 then rogering his requested confirmation that the Milling had been lined and locked normal for the 1. A minute later, FI-2's car countdowns got heard, mebbe some of the earlier noise.
At 0346, the 333 WLs were dark, the 334 ELs at Stop and the 1 stagger dark a few later at 0351, the same time as a both-sides-garbled AY-3 request to D-3 request for permission to reverse direction from where they stood, followed by a marginally clearer D-3 hedzup to AY-4 about AY-3. The 335s would be dark, and just to see if the tie-handler in the 335 lot had been moved to the House, it was still in place,
At 0358, there was prolonged D-3 transmission, Mount Wachusett allowing only the ID to be intelligible, and at 0400, a breaking D-? reached out to POAY, naught further to be heard to, from, or about that particular set of letters,
Up Da Hill, the 345s were all at Stop, and the only occupied track was the House -- the brush-cutter and tie-handler/carry-car combo. The fence panels and weight bags were still awaiting relocation, but it seemed like there'd be work for the tie-handler and little friend, assuming the presence of a port-a-potty at the southern tip of the lower lot is a valid hint. Let's keep the MTness of Gardner yard near the front of our memories.
An offering was made, and the 345s still lit, a trip to 346 was made, the WL being dark at 0416. Suggesting that I had probably just missed a run-through EB, the 345s had gone dark on my swing EB. The trip to 335 was quiet, and the ELs were at Stop, the Controlled Siding WL at Medium Approach Slow and the Single WL at Stop, also the aspects on the 334 ELs. The 1 stagger was dark, as would be 333 WLs at 0438, so what had been doing the minutes-earlier shunting at 335? Dunno, just dunno, later receptions adding to the puzzlement.
At 0442, D-3 gave 22K 3-to-2-to-1-and-power-back-to-2 yarding instructions, racks unmentioned, and D-3 and 22K saying something would be the same as yesterday. At 0443, D-3 told EDPO they be going in on FME and doing -- my words -- some juggling, the 10 Ayers already there to be east out. Among the cars mentioned by EDPO were Barbers. So and earlier than I had been there, both 22K and EDPO had apparently highballed Gardner, suggesting that ED-8 might have general and racks for MT Gardner and mebbe even racks for Ayer.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and a Clear for 2, a Slow Clear on the 330 1 WL and the GL WLs dark, and this was when AY-4 would be clearly IDable.
The FG WLs showed a Clear for 1 and an Approach for 2, EDPO with KCIRs 7276 and 7620 plus NewBlue 501 getting on the move at 0450 and getting east at 0454 of KCIR 5??? holding on East Side. At 0457, D-3 reached out to AY-6 on both channels, more to follow.
At 0502 -- the same time the EB staggers for Derby were dark -- D-3 said something lost to me to 22K about Slab City, advising that 400 was about 5 late and just getting to Fitchburg, explaining the call I had just heard for 330.
At 0509, D-3 would again try to contact AY-6, that being accomplished at 0514-0518, the D-3 side of things asking for status, repeating that there were 14 spotted -- left over from 10-29? -- and 27 on the Main. There was more that got garbled, D-3 later saying that present plans were for the MTs to go to FMW.
Naught else intelligible got hear during the next 12 minutes.
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