• Gardner Gawking

  • Pan Am Southern (webssite: https://panamsouthern.com ) is jointly-owned by CSX and Norfolk Southern, but operated by Genesee & Wyoming subsidiary Pittsburg & Shawmut dba Berkshire and Eastern,
Pan Am Southern (webssite: https://panamsouthern.com ) is jointly-owned by CSX and Norfolk Southern, but operated by Genesee & Wyoming subsidiary Pittsburg & Shawmut dba Berkshire and Eastern,

Moderator: MEC407

  by jaymac
 
A planned later arrival on 02-17-2012 brought some different viewing. Over the radio, D-3 confirmed with the PW switcher that 1 load and 11 MTs, including 7 racks had been dropped on 2 in the yard. PWs 3908 and 4005 were pulling south with 4 tanks and a covered hopper plus 5 racks as I arrived, calling themselves clear to D-3 at 1203. The stub and Heywood were MT, and the Dead still had the 3 hoppers and 1 gon. Is the Bull Run the new RIP track? the CSXT box and PW extended-side gon that had been there earlier still were.
D-3 said at 1216 that AYMO was on the move at Ayer. I had to be, too, so I went east and saw NSs 9768, 8978, and 9614 roll 21 racks, the final 2 being a TTX articulated unit, and 89 tables and wells, including a few DSs, west of Wachusett on 2 at 1308. I left and got even more out of range of the 346.6 talker, so I've no idea of the "official" length.
  by jaymac
 
For the morning of 02-21-2012, the yard seemed a good bit more open. There were a few racks on one track and a mix of cars on yard 4, including tanks, boxes, a couple of uncovered coil-stock flats, and some Sullivan loads. The box and extended-side gon were still on the Bull Run, the gon and hoppers were still on the Dead, and the stub and Heywood were still MT. 495ED had earlier been told by D-3 it would in effect be polishing the CPF Derby crossover, and at 0847, OldPaint 615, solo -- yep, solo -- rolled 7 -- yep, 7 -- west of CPF 345 on 1. TC 1623, right on cue, canceled its G-304 control of CPF 346 to CPF 354, and the entire reported 472' were called with no defects at 0852 by the 346.6 talker.
In keeping with the relatively-short-train theme, even though it was further east, POSE with CSXTs 5115 and 5119 got 56 off 2 and onto the East Wye at 1037.
  by deeptrax
 
I'm sort of new to the lingo... "2" referring to the left hand mainline track in Ayer, right?
  by jaymac
 
Tru dat, to use language younger than I actually am, IF you are looking west. Looking west, track 1, 1 track, or 1 is the northern or righthand set of rails while the southern or lefthand set is track 2, 2 track or 2.
  by deeptrax
 
Thanks! Also, does the POSE tend to have a layover/ power swap etc. or does it just recrew and go on to Worcester?
  by jaymac
 
deeptrax-
The strong tendency for POSE is to recrew somewhere east of CPF 309, the western end of the Graniteville siding on what had been known as the Stoney Brook Branch between the Willows and North Chelmsford. after the "Freight Main Line" concept came in, the designation formally disappeared, but you can still hear either "the Brook" or "the Branch" used, more proof of the permanence of habit. POSE tends not to recrew west of CPF 309 or in the Hill Yard at Ayer just so the line and the yard, usually active and at or near capacity, can maintain fluidity, but it does occasionally happen.
  by deeptrax
 
I'll have to see it sometime! It seems like about 15% of the time it cans before reaching Lawrence, since the Shawsheen cam shows it coming through in the morning sometimes. I'm guessing in these cases it doesn't recrew at CPF 309. So then it just runs through the yard and once in Worcester, onto the CSX line with that new crew (I'm guessing it doesn't work/stop in Worcester since Worcester is all intermodal.)
  by jaymac
 
deeptrax-
There is a crew-swap stop at New Bond Street or occasionally Burncoat Street in Worcester, but there is no work, just a short run on the PW to access the CSX Boston Line. PAR recrews are generally but not exclusively targeted for stretches of line where there will be either no or minimal impact on passenger traffic, where there is more than enough interval between grade crossings to accommodate train-length, and where there is also reasonably good vehicular access.
  by jaymac
 
On 02-24-2012, there was a different set of tie-service hoppers on the Dead. The stub, Heywood, and -- at long last -- the Bull Run were MT, as were two yard tracks. The other yard tracks were partially filled with racks. According to the radio, both an LCT and EDPO were already in D-2's hands. The radio -- both D-3 and PW -- was ominously quiet about other activity, so that was taken as a portent to bounce.
Although there were bunches of raindrops and snowflakes during the 0930 to 1015 observation window, an admittedly short one, there was no visual or auditory evidence of any anticipatory efforts to qualify MBCR crews on the Gardner-Worcester equipment shuttle recently proposed by Ken Patrick on the <Fitchburg Line Upgrades> thread of the <MBTA Rail Operations> forum.
  by deeptrax
 
So New Bond St. sees a CSX crew getting onboard for Q427... This is probably in the mornings, right? And I'm guessing it's the same places for SEPO- New Bond st. and ~CPF 307?
  by jaymac
 
New Bond and to a lesser degree Burncoat are the CSX-PAR swap points. Where PAR-PAR swaps take place is -- except for geographical concerns -- unpredictable. On eastbounds, the crew might take it only a few miles and -- because they were already on short time -- they get cabbed and a new crew gets cabbed in later. They could also go to CPF 309 near Depot Road in Westford or any of a bunch of other places where they won't impact passenger traffic and won't be blocking grade-crossings. I F -- that's the proverbial Big If -- they're really lucky and there are no waits and/or no work and/or no power-swaps, they might get all the way to Rigby.
  by jaymac
 
MT. That's what Gardner was at 0945 on 02-27-2012. Well, almost -- There were the more recent tie-service hoppers on the Dead, but there was nothing in the yard, on 1, 2, the stub, or the Heywood. Around 1030 and heard over the radio, D-3 gave FI-1 from CPF 346 to CPF 354, but no further because west of that was under a TC's control.
  by jaymac
 
The 02-28-2012 viewing at 0800 showed that cars had remembered how to congregate at the yard: a track of racks, a track of general that included a pair of Sullivan loads, and the tie-service hoppers on the Dead. As practice has been, nothing was on the stub or Heywood. A couple of TCs showed up and then the Volvo boom, and then after some conversation, D-3 made G-312 effective at 0839, giving away 2 from CPF 345 to CPF 346 so work could be done on the easterly 2 switch connecting to the yard. Mebbe work would also be done on the westerly, but I left. I wasn't listening either earlier or much later, but the order count seemed high for that early in the morning. Are operational patterns changing for track work?
D-2 had talked earlier to an ECT about recrewing, and a 1000 drive-by at Graniteville (yeah, way east of Gardner) showed NSs 9692, 8424, and 9368 plus NewBlues 609 and 600 and a string of general freight and then MT hoppers. There were crews both at CPF 312 and the PAS side of CPF WL, so it would probably be a bit before that parade got up Da Hill.
  by newpylong
 
ED495 now is 1900 hrs OD Deerfield instead of 0200, and they will be tacking Portlands on the rear. Scratch another semi-daily train due to down traffic.
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