Malcolm loved to shoot SP box cars so he bribed the SP CEO'sI have a logical explanation. Not every UP freight on Sherman
Hill served the same purpose. Some were locals. Some were headed
to the PNW. Some were headed to Denver, or Kansas. And SOME were
blocked cars collected for return to the SP. Does this seem odd
to you? There were just 3 other class 1's in California besides
the UP, and 1 of them was the most dominant railroad there --
the SP. Considering that the SP turned over 1,000 cars a day
over to the UP at Ogden, why does it seem unexpected to you that
the UP might want to expedite empty "return to owner" blocks at
times? The SP probably turned over all kinds of PRR and C&NW and
LS&I and SLSF and SAL cars at Ogden too, but LOGIC would say
that those would not be "returned when empty" to the SP. As I
said before, you keep beating this SP horse to death. SP was
essential to the Overland Route in your era -- it was basically
a joint operation. And to help you out, the connections at Omaha
were 7 -- C&NW/CMStP&O, MILW, CRI&P, CB&Q, CGW, WABASH, and IC.
These 7 fought over the tidal wave of traffic the UP terminated
at Omaha/Council Bluffs -- and a good part of that wave was
coming from the SP. Does it seem odd to you that the UP would
have blocks of cars for its eastern connections?
Maybe you should study UP classification yards instead. I've seen
diagrams that show tracks marked for railroad ABC or XYZ -- the UP
probably held cars for the Milw@Omaha or SP@Ogden (etc) on
specific classification tracks. And it probably cleaned out those
tracks daily, or twice daily -- resulting in (surprise!) blocks of
cars that were not random at all.
Tim wasn't wrong. The theory simply fails for the data that we"Fail" is too vague. YOUR data does not directly demonstrate the
proportional distribution theory. But dare I say it, Sherman Hill
is not the only place in the railroad world. And your data is
not proven to be representative or typical of the UP either. So
why should anyone rely on it?