The Dispatcher
Operations - April 26, 2011
Tax Day is behind us and it is time to operate the C&M.
This is the first ops after the 3 day marathon for Bay Rails.  The crew finally got to see some of the
improvements made for Bay Rails plus we had a fully functional wye in Mackinaw City.  This allowed us to
turn some engines plus, through an innovative move by the Mackinaw City Yardmaster, the wye was used
to hold an engine used to pull some headend cars off of a train.  Very creative!
The Operators
The operators included the dispatcher, Andy Schnur, the Grand Rapids Yardmaster, Seth Neumann, the Assistant GR Yardmaster, Steve Kleszyk and
the Mackinaw City Yardmaster, Steve Williams.  Other operaters included John Sutkus, Earl Girbovan, Les Dahlstedt, David Parks and John Blunden, a
good crew, indeed.  As the numbers above indicate, we moved a whole bunch of cars and the railroad operated like a fine Swiss watch (a very old
Swiss watch in need of some repair!!!).
14  turns (out plus back),  9 through freights
0 Ann Arbor & Kalkaska Interchange runs (out plus back),  2  unit coal trains (one south and one north)

Online customer deliveries/pick ups totalled
102 cars at industrial sidings and in addition, we even picked up/setout a total of
express loads in our passenger operations.  
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The Yardmasters
Click images to
The Operators
Above, Andy did a great job.  
operations.  I love when he
operations.  I love when he
dispatches, I can actually read
the Train Sheet!!  Thanks Andy.  

Below, Andy at the end of the
operations.  I understand that his
doctor says, with a little rest, he
will return to normal!!
The Comstock Park Yardmaster was Seth, but
six PRR interchangers moves and even had this
time he had an assistant yardmaster in the time
to switch the Consumers Power plant.  Things
worked out so well that I think we just may
worked out so well that I think we just may
continue with two YM's in Grand Rapids.  Great
Job guys.
Wreck Moves of the Day
We had a great crew, all pretty experienced and all kept the trains moving across the railroad.  From the left: David
shown here waiting in Comstock Park Yard for clearance with the Walton Junction Turn.  David loaded about eight
thousand empty grain covered hoppers up in WJ!  John worked the Traverse City Turn.  Somehow he ended up with
more cars in the town than normal, making his job a bit testie, but as expected, John did a great job (see photo below).  
Unfortunately, he will have to go back to "the home" for a couple of weeks to recover!

Les is shown working Cadillac.  He has cleared the main for a meet.  Finally, John S and Earl up in Petoskey.  John did
two Petoskey turns and he was overheard mumbling "goo, goo, goo".  Petoskey claims another victim!
The Crew
Back Row - Earl & 2 John's
Bottom - Seth & Steve K
(Les had to leave before the pic was taken)
reasonably good time so it was a great
operation.  Thanks guys, see you next

Chicago & Mackinac
We kept the insurance adjuster busy!  Left is the Great Northern boxcar being sideswiped by
the #102, the Northbound Local Passenger Train.  On the right, the BCR car thought it was a
3-way switch and decided to take the center track!  No blood, no foul, all ended well!
Steve W. volunteered for the Mackinaw City
Yardmaster job.  As expected, he kept the yard
open all evening.  He kept an ongoing
conversation with himself most of the evening.  
The scary part is that he was answering his own as
you want if you keep that yard as clean as you
kept it!!  Thanks Steve.
We started out according to the timetable with
the Commuter #86 meeting Commuter #87,
right on the advertised in Traverse City.
Things went downhill quickly thereafter!!!
Random Photos
Above, a neat meet in Petoskey.  The local is
crammed in an industrial spur while
Southbound through freight Extra 314 rolls by.
Looks like the
tree trimming
crew needs to
get to work in the
Charlivoix block
between TC and
You just never know about yards.  Above left, where are all the cars?  It looked like a
retirement job for our Dynamic Duo.  However, shortly thereafter, below left shows that
you just can't rest on the job.
Above right, the Mackinaw City yard was pretty empty, but that, of course, didn't last
The Southbound Soo Line Unit Coal Train is
caught between Petoskey and TC getting
scratched up by those unruly trees!
At left: Cars
everywhere in
TC.  John B
had fun!
Big Short is still a Big Mystery.  For some reason, with
no-one around WJ, a switch (the one in the photo at the
right) thought it would short out.  Since noone was near
that switch, and it apparently had been functioning
properly all evening, up till then, it was the last place the
maintenance crew would look.  Luckily, when the switch
was turned back to it's normal position, the short went
away.  So the red pin indicates a bad switch.

You guessed it.  As of today, the switch functions
perfectly in either position and I can't get it to short out no
matter what I do! You can't fix what ain't broke!!! I guess
Mr. Murphy left town.  Sorry for the squealing booster