This was indeed a busy weekend, but it was certainly all worthwhile. We'll start with pictures I took Saturday during the day, and I'm sure we'll be getting more sent in. This will necessarily have a stream-of-consciousness feel to it, since I'm too exhausted to produce a more organized version.
The 1797 and 1268 come out of the barn, running a few trips by themselves to begin with. That's only a teaser for what's going to appear later.
During the day on Saturday, we had a three-car train of wood CA&E cars: 36, 308, and 319. This is a combination that we had never run before, simply by chance. I wasn't even on the crew. We had four trusty and experienced crewmen to take care of the train, so I could just goof off and take pictures. (L to R) Frank was the motorman, Henry Vincent a trainman, Larry Stone the conductor, and David a trainman. It was great to be able to relax and ride along.
Before operation starts, the crew hold the obligatory job briefing, as required by the rules. "OK, are we going to let your father push us around as usual? If so, I quit!" "Yes, I can see how that might be a problem. I'll try to reason with him...."
Once the job briefing is over, the three cars pull out of the barn...
and are parked on the tail track.
As the wood L cars pass by.
Then we can pull into the station.
We had a good crowd of visitors, many of whom were eager to ride the train.
Here we are out at Kishwaukee Grove.
Everybody likes to watch the steam engine pull in.
Except that this time we also have something different: the IC Highliners are running for the first time at IRM.
This really makes me feel old: I remember when these were brand new.
But besides the new, we have the old.
Northwestern Elevated 24 is now our oldest operating car. Here a few people are waiting inside the barn for it to pull out.
The crowd are 50th Avenue are waiting for it to couple up to the other two wood L cars.
Meanwhile, the Highliners pass the station on their first trip in service.
And here's the three car train, in revenue service for the first time.
Meanwhile, many other things are going on, as usual. The B&G department are digging a trench for conduit to power the lights on the new Santa Fe sign.
By about 2pm, we were ready to put the cars away for a while. The 308 was cut off and ran into the barn first, since the 36 and 319 were going to be used for night-time runs.
Stay tuned, we'll post more tomorrow.