I was just a little late and the video is a bit dark. It wasn't as dark as it looks... I'll redo it. I could not resist... we had some Indian Summer, I thought I should do Dead Indian Pass instead of repairing my roof! Videos moved to BearSTOC.blogspot.com
Called for the unit train at 1115. I never know what that's going to be. I'll have to let you know. I like a midday call. It means I'll sleep at night. Slept at night last night and will again tonight. I could get well for a bit.
I have been waiting for it to even out. It... is the luck that has eluded us lately. We died on the ML and 2 trips in a row. The ML (or LM) is our local traffic train that we all dodge like it's the queen of spades. RR lineup are so bad that I've always joked that the best way to dodge it is to get the crew office or lineup to say we stand for the ML. We seldom catch the train we stand for. They had us picking up 135 empty coke cars at Livingston. So stupid I asked the dispatcher twice if it that was really what they wanted us to do. Finally, I called the trainmaster. He agreed with me to pickup 41 merchandise cars and 40 empties. Still a stupid number of total cars at 165 but... we died and another crew finished the work. Turn14 has been run around 9 times in the last 3 round trips. My luck has gotta change.
Notice the time of this post. As I have mentioned here before, there is a tendency to bitch at the RR. And here and other blogs I have noticed.
BUT... wasted a day yesterday. Layed around napping now and then know I was on the lineup to go to work at 2300 hrs. Awake now and then until called for the "V" train for 6am. Daylight trip on the stack train. Great call. Piss poor lineup... no one to tell so there it is. It's often said we get paid for our inconvenience... this is one of those times.
this is a placemarker for my motorcycle trip report a work in progress
Trip Stats 1009 miles 50.1 mpg
Day 1 - Billings, Greybull, Burgess Jct, Spearfish, SD Day 2 - Spearfish Canyon north to south, Lead, Deadwood, Lunch at the Ruby in Keystone, Iron Mountain Road, Needles Hwy, Custer State Park, Spearfish Canyon south to north. Day 3 - Spearfish Canyon again, Breakfast at Cheyenne Crossing, then home in 4 1/2 hours via 212 through the constuction zone at Lame Deer
It's been very cool in Montana but the heat wave in the east reminded me how things have changed. I seldom, anymore, get a locomotive that is not air conditioned. Still, I love running with the windows open on a summer night. Earplugs in, Headset on. Whistle ya, know!
Called for an actual mixed freight train as of this post
One of my medications went up $30 a month. The drug company taking advantage while they can before Obamacare kicks in? It's a med that has been around for 30 years... no reason for it to go up in price. It's gouging plain and simple. $574 / mo
The researchers agree that modafinil improves some aspects of working memory,
This was the best day of riding the entire trip. Greta Garmin tells me I was on the bike for 11:11:11
I was attempting to replace the CO tag in a remote location to tease Baker Boy. He fooled me, posted a new tag making this one invalid. On top of that he retrieved this tag anyway. Beat me twice. Brilliant.
Highlight of the day was for me the ride up Flaming Gorge in the evening. Last time I rode here was north to south and too late. This time the light was perfect except I could not take pictures into the sun and the canyon was to the west. Nothing can beat the human eye.
Quit early in Rock Springs, WY... I'll make it home tomorrow and maybe ride through the park and over the Beartooth for the first time this year.
I did a solo ride today. Rode up Big Thompson Canyon, and over to Glen Haven to get the CO "tag" and then took my shortcut bypassing Estes Park. I rode down to Mount Evans but it was raining and there was lightning popping all around, I really wanted to see the 13,000+ altitude and get out of the heat.
The rain cooled me down after I went the alt route over Squaw pass and diverted over to Blackhawk - Central City... My trusty Nikon camera got wet and quit. I'm hoping it will dry out. I'm famous for my on the fly shots from the motorcycle. I had a great lunch with a couple and there was a live band. [insert video here later] The owner of the place was an old friend from Evergreen.
I had my closest call today. And by a Boulder CO sheriff for Pete's sake. He pulled out in front of me so close I had to get on the brakes... I was running under the speed limit. I could tell he was daring me to go around him but maturity took over. Yeah, I fight ti but sometimes... Anyway, I turned right at the next opportunity, did my "walk around" and continued on a bit later.
A very enjoyable evening at the campground after my brother joined us a the CoSTOC banquet. Prime Rim for me and Salmon for him. Jim's sailplane stories were better than my motorcycle stories so I enjoyed seeing hem very much.
After the respit from the heat (I got a motel in Wheatland)
Blew on to Loveland via the Superslab... something I rarley do except where there isn't much to look at. And there isn't south of Wheatland.
Arriving in Lovland there was no one at the campground or the hotel yet. I rode up to Estes Park and over to my brothers in Boulder via 7. The disorganisers touted the beautiful vistas and the twisty roads. They didn't say anything about the heat and the traffic. I began to look for a palce to camp in a higher elevation than down in Loveland but didn't really come up with anything. This is a hard place to find a stealth camping spot.
I'm glad I settled for the Riverview in Loveland. But only because I had a great time with Lost Brit, Mile High and Smash from STOwners
I took one picture all day... not much to see, and the heat, I didn't want to stop!
Rick's ST has the 737 rudder issue... I have a hard time getting the bike to turn right.
Packed up this morning and headed south into Spearfish canyon. One of the best rides in the USA. I ran into my Camp mate at Cheyenne Crossing. After breakfast I started out, attempted to turn right toward Deadwood and the bike headed left back up the Spearfish canyon. I turned around at the other end after having a chat with a bicyclist that owned a car just like my old Red Civic hatchback.
Managed to get the bike headed south again I rode the canyon for the 3rd time. Everything was going fine when suddenly it was hard left rudder again at the Needles Highway. Now the dilemma, do I ride on and through the Custer State Park? Might as well, I've already paid.
Plan was to make it to Loveland and CoSTOC tonight but with all the left diversions I ended up in Wheatland after taking a time out in Edgemont, SD (102F)and Guernsey, WY, both are old away from home RR terminals for me. The RR Resort has the best restaurant in Guernsey. I had a nice shrimp platter.
The RR amazes me. It has been difficult to get extra time off. Particularly on the weekend. Today I left to get the STOwners Montana state tag. We play a game that entails taking a picture of our motorcycle in front of a landmark then moving to another landmark in the same state. BakerBoy from Colorado had moved the Montana tag to the very edge of Montana in, well, Baker of all places. I got the tag while a very pissed off dog berated my presence. It might have been the spacesuit I was wearing but I gotta think he is just nuts. I hate dogs and don't care who knows (except my little granddaughter who LOVES animals)
Anyway, I managed to get the tag and the North Dakota state sign as I left ND. There is no welcole to ND sign on US12 eastbound. I got ND and SD as I left ND. Made it to the Spearfish City Campground. I recommend the campground and plan on being here again July 8 and 9.
I get to run the train again today... Graintrain for 1430... it's amazing how much I can get done if the stupid RR gives me 2 1/2 days off. Mowed the lawn, worked on my truck, Fixed the hot tub so the Grandkids can use it as a swimming pool. Installed rain gutter. Vast improvement over recently.
Not sure if this post belongs in my Michael's Bicycle blog as it might related to the health issues and Shift Workers Syndrome I fight. A beautiful day in Billings and somehow not able to get of the couch. Thankfully I'll be home a bit longer than usual this trip as we deadheaded home last night. I'll worry about tomorrow and try to get something done this evening.
Last trip the phone rang at 0130 for a 0330 PASKCK, we left Laurel at 0555 Helpers on the rear at Livingston and pretty much a straight shot to Helena after that. It took us about the usual 10 hours to get there. Tied up in Helena at 1305 only to back on duty to Deadhead at 1900... I got no sleep and was up up well over 20 hours... the 4 hour rule should be outlawed... not to complain... just part of the nature of this job.
I was going to post about the zanyness of a recent trip but didn't think anyone really read this crap... Holy cow
I have got renewed interest 'cause out of the blue there has been interest in the RR posts AND my travels... Holy cow, I didn't know there was interest in this still.
I will make this a quick marker post and pre date a post about a recent trip where we ended up with 147 cars and 9400+ feet of train... pretty zany. I must have walked 5 miles doing the groundwork that day.
I think the language used in the media is against the rules to be used on the senate floor but has become popular there too. It is a disgrace. The founding fathers had spirited discussions but established decorum for a reason. It got out of hand. We have seen it surface a few times recently as the aisle has been more divided. We need more gentlemanly behavior from our leaders. Has it gone to fist like Japan yet? Won't be long I predict.
Personal attacks are wrong there just as they are wrong on this forum. Tell me if I'm full of shit... it'll be OK
It doesn't take much time listening to Rush or Glenn to figure out that they are first and foremost entertainers who are in it for the money, fame or whatever. The outlandish statements they make prohibit me from taking anything they say seriously. I therefore find it humorous. At least the leftist guys are on the comedy channel for the most part. Rachel has her own agenda and I find her funny too. I admittedly would rather laugh with them than at them but what I think of them doesn't matter. I also laugh at them that take them seriously.
And personally, and I know it is a contraction, but I respect the office if not the individual. A am disillusioned with most if not all politicians but refrain from using derogatory terms even though I could not stand Mr. Bush and am rapidly feeling the same about Mr. Obama.
It is impossible to find out or know what really goes on with our government. I was dismayed to learn that the Coast Guard prevented news agencies from taking pictures as the oil hits the beaches along the Gulf. Transparency in our new administration? Bullshit. Lately, I have gone burying my head in the sand. If I don't I tend to get wrapped up in the disgust and it can actually affect my mood. I believe in equal opportunity and they are all pissing me off with regularity. I don't watch TV news much, it disgusts me. I just grab my ankles and hang on no matter what they cram down our throats or shove... wherever... you get the point.
at 0930 we deadheaded to Helena arriving at 1320. RR gave us 5 hours off (Big Deal) then put us on a PASKCK with 8'10" left to work. The train had good power but was a pig. 7600ft long and over the drawbar and the helpers had to cut in. We died at Reed Point at 0300. ES into Laurel at 0430. I got about a 30" nap in Helena and have now been awake for 20 hours... how is that safe?