Still Shaking

Miranda will be getting her new brakes tomorrow, the process taking all day, so, being 130km from Vancouver and aware that I have at least one more ‘big’ hill ahead, I’m going to do the drive in the toad to see if I need to hire myself a driver.

I’m just not ready to get back on the proverbial horse. Oh, driving on flat, no problem, but I’m not ready to put myself back in a situation where I could find myself careening down a hill. I’ve received mixed opinions about the route ahead; some say that it’s ‘almost as bad’ as the road behind me while others scoff and say the worst is behind me. I want to hit the road feeling more confident than I feel right now.

I do seem to have lucked out with the mechanic; the estimate is fair and I’m being given a substantial discount on parts. The tire will also be replaced at no charge (a 250$ value on its own).

The brakes would have needed to have been rebuilt completely at some point during my ownership of Miranda, so the cost doesn’t hurt nearly as much as if I’d blown the engine or ripped the air conditioner off the roof ( 😉 to Croft) and I intended to give Miranda new shoes before leaving for Dawson in the spring. I’ve now got two bought. 🙂

I’m still trying to decide how I feel about my decision to take the Sea to Sky highway knowing ahead of time about its legendary grades. I think I was over confident because of the ease at which I crossed the Rockies last fall as well as my experience with some of the grades on the Alaska highway. What I can’t decide on is if the scare of my life was worth the breathtaking scenery and the excitement of taking a new route. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t.

But I will say that if I’d been stranded on that mountain last night in a car, it would have been a completely different experience than being stranded in my own home with access to a proper dinner, hot shower, heat, and my own bed. I was also grateful that the runaway lane had a small spur into which I was able to tuck Miranda (thank goodness for the emergency brake) so that I was not blocking this vital laneway in case someone else experienced a similar emergency.

I also learned just how easy it is to tow Miranda and was surprised by how small the tow truck was. The driver parked the truck at the top of the runaway lane, backed Miranda down the spur behind the truck, hooked her up, and just backed the whole kit and kaboodle up the highway until he was at the right angle to drive down the hill. *boggled*

Interesting fact: roadside assistance was going to send me a tow truck from Whistler, for which I would have been charge a 150$ premium. Calling someone local on my own saved me 30$. Thank goodness I had cell service on that mountain and that my GPS had the phone number of an auto place. They couldn’t help me, but at least the person understood my predicament and was able to give me the number of someone who could help. So many things went right yesterday for all that went wrong.

4 thoughts on “Still Shaking

  1. Asking someone for the clinical dissection of one of the most traumatic experiences of their life is, indeed, insensitive.

    I’ll return to this subject when I do my trip write up.

  2. Rae, I’m not sure how I found your blog – but I find it extremely interesting. I am so glad that your experience with the brakes ended safely. I can barely imagine how chilling that must have been.

    Experience is a great teacher and I’m sure you will continue to make lemonade out of lemons in this situation. Happy trails and God bless you each mile of the way.

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