Saturday, April 30, 2016

Silicon Valley Lines Operations session

Franziska and Sofia at Nowheres Yard with train #420 ready to go on AD4, and #370 ready next to the caboose track
Today was Ops Session #89 at Silicon Valley Lines. Franziska brought along her friend Sofia, and the two girls helped me run Nowheres Yard. The morning part of the session was quite intense with lots of live switching, and the girls were very happy when it was announced that the lunch sandwiches had arrived.

A part of the lunch crowd
Sofia ran the switcher engines most of the day, while Franziska manned the turnouts and uncoupled cars. Nowheres was a very busy place today, so I didn't have a chance to take a nice picture of the two girls.

Due to many willing operators today, we had a couple situations when Nowheres Yard was completely full. In the picture below the two reefer express trains #101 and #102 arrive at the yard simultaneously on AD2 and AD3, while AD1 is occupied by partially built train #376, and AD4 also has a train ready to leave. The stub-ended classification tracks in the lower half of the picture were either overflowing or had still pre-staged trains in them.

#101 and #102 are the highest priority trains on the railroad so they get express service in the yard to swap cars with the yard and each other, while everybody else needs to wait.
#420 got caught in this mayhem on its return trip from Ashgrove, and had to wait in the snow sheds at the top of The Loop for a while until we had space for them in the yard.

Yard full.
A couple engines in Nowheres were bad-ordered today and the yard was short on engines. Engine #251 of the set below was bad-ordered en route in Tracy, and only its sister engine #225 came back into Nowheres towards the end of the session.

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