Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Friendship cove (and the trip that almost didn't happen)

How appropriate that I spent most of my Lake Powell vacation with my friends in an area known as Friendship Cove. It was the most amazing, private spot. It was a little tricky to get our houseboat  in and out of there, but it was well worth it. (Yes, that is our enormous boat! We were late getting our reservation in, and all the smaller boats were already reserved. Let's just say that the five of us had plenty of elbow room on that sucker!)

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What vacation would be complete without a horror story about how the trip almost didn't happen? Here's ours. We were in Bluff, Utah (which is equivalent to the middle of nowhere), about 3 hours from home and about 3 hours from the Lake Powell marina where our reservation was. We were in our truck, and as we headed out of the tiny town of Bluff, we felt a wobble-wobble on the right side of the truck. Thinking it was a flat tire, we pulled over and checked them. Both tires on the right side were fully inflated. Thinking it must have just been a weird spot in the road, we climbed back in and started down the road again. Wobble-wobble, wobble-wobble. Fortunately, Tony stuck his head out the window as we were driving. He looked back at the rear tire. Fine. He looked up at the front tire, turned back to the husband with a white face and yelled, "Right front! Pull over!"

To make a long story a little shorter, there are 8 bolts that hold the tire onto the truck. All but two of the bolts broke off inside the wheel. That wobble-wobble was the right front tire about to come completely off the truck!

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And the bolts didn't just get loose and come unscrewed. They BROKE, down inside the wheel, so it was impossible for us to fix. A few more yards down the road and the last two bolts probably would have broke, too. I still get sick thinking of what would have happened if our tire had flown off at 65 mph!

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Fortunately, we were near a very popular boat launch on the river, so our friends caught a ride back into Bluff and scored the last room at the local hotel. The husband and Sadie and I waited a few hours for the tow truck to arrive to haul us about 1.5 hours back toward home to the nearest area that could repair the truck. But this was Friday night, and we were supposed to pick up the boat on Saturday morning and we couldn't change our reservations. So the husband's wonderful and totally awesome uncle brought my car to us on Saturday morning. It was tricky to fit four people, a dog, and all of our gear and food into my tiny Rav-4 for the rest of the drive to the marina, but we were highly motivated! The timing worked out just right, and we were able to pick up a repaired truck on our way home.

The conclusion of almost everyone who has heard about this is that the bolts were probably over-tightened when we recently had new tires put on the truck. The moral of the story is that if you ever have to change a tire or get new tires, make sure the bolts aren't over-tightened because the stress that places on the bolts causes those suckers to snap in half!

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