Unless the wind is too gusty, the crew and I leave Ash Fork Fields tomorrow.
The Perfect Tow Vehicle faces a big test. The road from Ash Fork to Williams is up, up, up. Think of a long uphill grade going up a mountain. Now put four or five of those together with curves and you’ve got the road to Williams. This road, Interstate 40 from Ash Fork to Williams, recently took a bite out of the truck of fellow blogger and new friend, Geogypsy, as she tried to move her home up that mountain.
Needless to say, calling a tow truck can really take the fun out of a trip.
If you’ve been following along and reading carefully, you know that the PTV’s cluster assembly went bonkers, as these Chevy’s are wont to do.
The oil pressure gauge reads “OMG, you’re still driving this thing!” all the time. Just like in the children’s story, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf,” the oil gauge is always crying wolf.
Plus it’s in cahoots with the Check Engine Light which has cried wolf ever since I got the PTV about a year ago.
In essence, I can’t tell what’s going on with the engine, other than how fast we’re going, the battery charge, and the water temperature.
Did I mention I dread going up that mountain?
The plan is to put the PTV in second gear and creep up the grade with “my foot on the pedal like there’s an egg under it,” to use Rusty’s expression. About a third of the way up, I’ll move over into a pull-out and let the engine cool for 15-20 minutes. Like it says on the shampoo bottle, I’ll “repeat as needed. “
Maybe this sounds silly from where you sit.
Well, I’d rather be cautious than have the PTV and the BLT towed to Williams. Where will I camp? The rough plan is to continue on to Flagstaff, either turn south and go a few miles to boondock near Lake Mary or turn north and boondock on a forest road off Highway 89. How long I’ll stay, I don’t know.
The Arizona triple-digit heat wave is over.
The temperatures are expected to drop twenty degrees with rain on the way, possibly thunderstorms Thursday. This forecast is for Ash Fork, Williams, and Flagstaff, so we might as well move on up the road. The tricky part will be choosing a campsite in an unfamiliar area of the Kaibab National Forest that won’t turn into a mud hole when the rain comes.
Ah, the challenges of a boondocking vagabond!
In spite of these challenges, or maybe because of them, I feel alive and energized and anxious to see what tomorrow will bring for me and my crew.
rvsue4/18/12 . . . $66.80 for 18.16 gal. of gas @ $3.679 a gal, $68.30 groceries, $19.71 gift (groceries), $11.99 dog food 4/19/12 . . . $0 4/20/12 . . . $0 4/21/12 . . . $21.83 + $2.42 tax for 7.30 gal. propane @ $2.99 a gal, $5.00 tip, $1.59 soda, $1.50 for 6 gal. of drinking water 4/22/12 . . . $0 4/23/12 . . . $0