If we are not talking about bikes we are talking about our next adventure.
With that said, my cousin and I figured we would take a few days and go explore some new areas that we haven’t had the opportunity to ride yet.
We loaded up the bikes and enough food, water, and beer to last us for a few days. With the trailer ready and the truck full of fuel we figured we were unstoppable and headed out for another one of our adventures.
Now, my cousin and I have a lot in common. One of those is making up our plans as we go. We had talked for a couple of weeks prior that we wanted o head over the mountains and do some desert riding for a few days. In true form to our fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants mentality my cousin just happened to pull up a road cam website on his phone as we were headed down the driveway. I could tell by the look on his face something wasn’t good.
“What’s up,” I asked?
With that all familiar smirk on his face, that I know all so well, he presented me with a picture of the road conditions on the mountain pass we were about to venture over. Granted it was the middle of January, but just a few days prior to this adventure we were basking in 60 degree weather.
Nope! Not going to happen.
I like a good adventure just as much as the next guy but pulling a 40′ trailer in those conditions was not my idea of a fun adventure.
As we were laughing at our misfortune we were also thinking, oh crap now where are we going to go?
It took me a week to get the trailer out of storage, thanks mostly in part to the rain we had been experiencing in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. It made our driveway a slick mess and although my truck is a powerful machine, it had a terrible time trying to pull the 14,000 pound trailer up the slippery incline which was to say the least: VERY FRUSTRATING.
We looked at each other and said simultaneously,
This time of year, that’s where the sun likes to hide out and I don’t really care much for the snow.
We made our way to the freeway to head south, and at this point, we still had no idea where we would end up. Thank God for smart phones. My cousin started to map us a new destination by surfing the web to give me directions in between his car sickness caused by staring intently at his cell phone for an hour and a half.
By the time we finally got to our general destination it was late afternoon and we only had an hour or so of daylight left. I turned to my cousin and ask for some detailed directions.
He was staring down at his phone while rotating it from left to right saying, “I can’t get this damn thing to work right, I think it’s possessed.”
While he was spinning his phone like a basketball player spins a ball on their finger he tells me at the last minute,
I asked, “Are you sure?”
He nodded his head as if to say trust me. Oh man! I knew what that meant. We have been riding together for far to many years and I can read him like a book. We were not going down the right road. This is often our riding style, just so you don’t get confused. Meanwhile, the sun had almost disappeared behind the hills and we were beginning to lose the light. We both soon came to the realization that this was not the right road and we needed to turn around.
Turn around. Now that’s an under statement. The road we were on had turned into what seemed to be the smallest road in the county with only one place that might just be big enough for us to turn around. After getting the trailer, we call home for a few days, turned around we headed back down the wrong road to get another try at this.
After what seemed to be an eternity, we made it back to the main road with just enough daylight to try again.
With the words I have come to not trust with my life I hear my cousin say, “Turn right.”
Of course my immediate response was, “Are you sure?”
We headed down the washboard, pothole infested, gravel road for a mile or two and once again came to the realization that we were once again on the wrong road. Somehow we where able to find a spot just big enough to turn around, but I had the feeling we were starting to push our luck. So down the wrong road we went again to find our way back to the main road for another try.
Now by this time it was dark and we had been on the road for quit some time. Both of us were tried and ready to get out of the truck.
My cousin said, “Let’s try one more road. I mean, what could go wrong? This one at least looks promising.”
After driving up that road, which turned into someones narrow driveway, we knew we had done it again.
“This is not the right road,” I announced.
While we sat there, in the pitch black discussing our options, we noticed headlights coming up behind us. My cousin got out to greet the fast approaching vehicle with his all-infectious smile and likable personality.
He has actually gotten us out of a few sketchy situations with that farm boy attitude. In my mirror I could see him heading back to the truck. He told me that the nice gentlemen behind us needed to get by, but because the trailer is the size that it is, it was pretty much impossible for that to happen. He then tells me of a spot the gentlemen behind us said we would be able to turn the trailer around in; no problem. This coming from two guys that could only see the back of the trailer and not its length.
“I’m game,” I said, “I just want to get out of this situation without having to back this thing all the way back to the main road. Again.”
My cousin jumped up on the running board of the truck and told me they would flash their lights when we made it to the turn around spot. The vehicle behind us soon started to flash their lights. I looked at my cousin and said,
“Are they kidding me?”
He chuckled, shrugged then told me, “No worries, I’ll stay out here and spot you this time.”
At this point my anxiety level had gone through the roof. I was secretly grateful this adventure had not included the Intern. Even though she wasn’t in the truck with us, I could still hear her freaking out, in my head.
“Now, if you are EVER in a situation where you have to put your truck into four wheel drive to turn around, you probably have no business being in that situation to begin with.” Wes Elder, WEadventureNW
I put the truck into four wheel drive to be able to have enough traction to turn the trailer around. My cousin was guiding me into a driveway with the front of my truck crammed in between a carport and a big tree with minimal room to spare. Somehow we managed to fit and straighten out the trailer somewhat. The next piece of advice he gave me was to just crank it hard so the trailer could turn up the hill.
I’m not sure what exactly happened next.
I just remember yelling to my cousin, “I’m out of room and can’t turn the truck anymore without wiping out the drivers side fender.”
…and him yelling back to me,
“Just mash on it!”
When he finally got back in the truck he turned to me and said, “You know your getting pretty good at turning this thing around. You just turned a forty-foot trailer around in a twenty-foot spot.”
The two guys who were waiting patiently behind us, walked up to the window of the truck. It was like a big celebration! The four of us were laughing and talking about the situation, because I don’t think any of us really thought we would be able to turn that trailer around. We all had a good laugh and then we ask our two new friends how close we were to Johns Peak? We told them we planned on setting up camp there. They looked at us like we were from a different plant. They started to tell us how it was the second road that we had turned around on that led to the camping are. But, they had never seen anyone dumb enough to try and get something that big up there. referring to the trailer, now that they could easily see the length.
“Hi nice to meet you I’m Dumb, and I’d like you to meet my cousin Dumber.”
After we thanked them for giving us some light from their vehicle we were off again and on our way back to the main road.
By this time we were both done. We just wanted to park the trailer and crack open a beer or two. My cousin got back on his trusty possessed phone that had not let us down yet. Right.
I told him, “You need to throw that thing out the window.”
He did find us an RV park that was just down the road from where we wanted to be anyway.
“Good call, and way to redeem yourself,” I said, with half a grin.
We did crack a beer, or two. It was a rocky start to another amazing adventure, and I wouldn’t change a single event that led up to this point.
Check out our follow up story. We met this amazing gentleman on the trails. It was pretty cool. I rode my first trials bike.
If you have a place you think we should check out and ride please tell me about it in the comments section.
Stay safe, and have many adventures.
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