I hate to complain... it's so common.
Dispatchers have got to where they are hard pressed for some reason to give us information.
We caught the U-MISLAU... it was an empty ribbon rail train.
Years ago they tacked one of these trains on the rear of my 196 train. I warned the Helena trainmaster it wasn't a good idea. The equipment is old and the cars are light. It's a recipe for sliding wheels. My complaint was ignored. We went through Lombard and the crew there told us we had wheels sliding. It was so cold that it was impossible to get a good release. I had stopped the train, made a full service and continued but because the ribbon rail train was so far back there we could not see it. 5-7" flat spots on 9 cars were the result. We set 7 of them out at Stanley and 2 more at Clarkston.
I caught this one today at 0035. Dark but only 35 cars... We had the MRL 256... the bell quit, the radio didn't have a screen, it had flat spots and we had to inspect the power. We also had the MRL 290... both with red ball paint. I intended to get pics after I was off duty but it didn't happen. Photo above is my file photo in the old paint. Is this the last blue power I will ever run?... kinda fun, I do like the old stuff.
I thought maybe they had learned a lesson with these trains. Nope... doomed to make the same mistake they wanted to have us pickup the east ML traffic at Livingston. Too bad they didn't ask us until we were nearly to Big Timber. We did pick up the Mean Green Machines (The shuttle power) It would have worked as it has been unseasonably warm so far this year.