Lodge Grass, Montana. 6-30-00.
We were meeting 5 trains here this morning and amazingly it was going to be fantastic meets. The first train was stopped at Lodge Grass waiting on me when I arrived. The 2nd train was just stopping behind him as I cleared the west switch. The last of the 5 trains was out of the next station, Aberdeen, so it looked as if we were going to meet 5 trains in about 25-30 minutes. Wow! That is great. That also was plan A.
Plan B. The first train, a coal train, left as soon as we cleared. The second train was the H-KCKPAS. My conductor was on the ground giving them the customary rollby inspection. 9 cars from the rear end of the 113 car train he sees a steel band dragging on the ballast. He calls the H train and tells them. They stopped just west of the west switch to secure the band. The grain train stops on the main between switches. The M-LINLAU stops just east of the east switch. And another coal train stops behind the M. The H train's conductor had to walk 104 cars back along his train, secure the steel strap, and then walk back to the locos. That took about an hour. By the time the H train and the whole fleet got moving again and past us we had been there for over an hour and a half.
This second pic shows the rear end of the grain train and the locos of the M-LINLAU in the early dawn light at Lodge Grass. It is a bit blurry due to the time exposure in the dim light.
The 3rd pic is on 7-1-00 from the P-KCMSSE. I am stopped at the east switch of Anita, Montana. A coal train is on the main ahead and the P-SSEMEM is pulling into the siding.
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