My original plan this morning was to take my grandpa’s Chevrolet LUV and go back to the sandstone to get some pictures of the sunrise. My grandfather told me the night before, “Go in with two wheel drive so you can get out in four wheel drive. If you go in deep with four wheel drive then you’re screwed”. Unfortunately the gate to his property was locked still, so I decided to walk up one of the hills to get some pictures of the sunrise. It was still pretty cloudy and drizzling so I didn’t get a sunrise, but was able to get a decent view. I was glad to have the opportunity to walk a hill again. I also found out that cowboy boots are fairly useless, at least the ones I had. You would think that for use on the farm and such they would be great, but they were a pain just to climb up and down hills with, give me a set of hiking boots any day, the reason I did not use mine, is because I could not find them while packing up. I don’t know where they could be, Montana perhaps? I’m hoping that they turn up someplace.
After my morning walk I sat and watched the birds from the cabin while talking with Barb, mainly to try and snap some good pictures, while waiting for my Grandpa to get up. I did manage to get a few. I am also going to mention that there is a setting on my camera that makes pictures more vivid, so I’m testing that out for now. So far I am liking the results. After grandpa got up we shot the breeze for bit and we noticed an English Pit walking around on the property. Grandpa told me to get in the Mikado (Chevy LUV) and go after it. Apparently someone lost their pit a few days ago while fishing. She’s supposed to be a friendly house dog, but before I got out of the door she fled. I drove around the property, mudding a little bit, looking for the dog but to no avail.
After returning to the cabin we mosied on over to the Lodge for some breakfast and then he taught me how to drive the Ford 8N tractor. He gave me a brief lesson and then told me to use the rake feature and to move rocks to the side as well as level the road a little bit. We have had quite a bit of rain here, so the roads have been torn up some. I had a fun time on the tractor and feel that I did fairly well. One section of the road was extremely muddy and I had some trouble around that point. If I had the rake too low the tractor would start to get stuck, but it I had it too high then it really didn’t do much…so that area needs to dry out before it can be leveled again. After feeling Amish for a few hours I went to the mineral hot springs on the property to soak for a while. Let me tell you. Those mineral hot springs beat any hot-tub that I have been in.
Keeping with the theme of being busy I hopped in the Mikado and decided to go have some fun. I considered the Toyota, but after yesterday’s adventure I thought it might be good to give it a break and to take the vehicle with Four Wheel Drive instead. I drove on the main dirt road heading to the reservoir and took some scenic shots before heading back. Let me tell you folks if your gut says that you shouldn’t do something you probably should not do it. On the way back I saw this good sized hill and thought to myself, “I do have four wheel drive, I might as well”. So I put the Mikado in Low and went away. As I got further and further up the hill I realized that maybe this wasn’t the best idea, so I tried to turn her around. As I did so I stalled it…figures. So I was perfectly perpendicular to the trail. As I tried to start her again, she wouldn’t have it. I was listing fairly well so I thought that the gas wasn’t quite flowing, so I got out and pushed…slowly as to make sure that I could jump back in once it started rolling down the hill. Luckily that all worked out, but I ignored my instincts again.
This time I saw a little trail that wasn’t steep or anything going off into a canyon, I thought that maybe I should turn around and head back to the cabin since it was getting late, but then I thought, “Ahh it looks easy enough, I’ll just go down a little bit”. I put her back into 2WD, following my grandfather’s earlier advice and continued. Well…I went down a little bit then I realized I really should turn around, as I proceeded to turn around I got stuck. Once again I found myself perfectly perpendicular to the trail. I figured that it wasn’t an issue, I wasn’t in 4WD yet. I turned the vehicle off and stated to take pictures of me being stuck, kind of like trophies I guess. After my photoshoot I hopped into the truck and turned the key…click…nothing. Well what good does having 4WD do if you can’t start the darn thing? After pondering for a few minutes I still had not pondered what exactly I could do. For a moment I wondered if I could MacGyver my way out of this one like I did yesterday. I tried pushing the truck up a little, then lodging rocks under the tire, inching my way back so that I might be able to turn the vehicle onto the trail and maybe push start it. Well I backed up to a point that I couldn’t back it up any further, and I was nowhere near the room I needed to turn around. I grabbed my gear, locked the truck and walked along the road and not too long after Louise came by, she was heading down the hill to go back home. Good timing for me.
She came to the trail and tried to jump the truck…no luck. We tried a few more times; trying to get her to go but the same results…click…nothing. So we headed back to the cabin to get Grandpa to either possibly find another solution or to pull me out. We brought him back with a wire brush and some wrenches, to loosen and clean the corroded battery terminals, but again nothing, she was as dead as a Gemco credit card. So we pulled out the chain and used the jeep to pull me out and drag me back. I tried to start it while I was being towed but no luck, so I just watched closely as I was being dragged along turning quickly and having to break very quickly as another truck came around the corner. Eventually we made it back and Robert, one of my grandfather’s friends who lives on the property, said that that the system is not charging and that I just ran it down far enough. He said that he will get on it some point this week, so out of luck. After a little bit of shooting the breeze and dinner it was time to call it a night.