Alaska or Bust! – Busted the motor!


So we started out off to Truckee, the first stop on our trip to Alaska.  We got to Pleasanton in the east bay when the motor blew up.  It made a load rattling noise, the low oil pressure light went on, and the motor died.  Would not re-start.  We had to use the emergency lever to get it into neutral.

Highway 680
Highway 680 exit 21A The end of our trip!

Fortunately, the week before, I’d signed up for the Good Sam roadside assistance, and they towed the Jeep and the trailer off the highway, and over to the local Jeep dealer.  This is probably what happened:

The Jeep dealer didn’t want us to park it on his lot, but suggested that we ask next door at Car Max since they have a large empty parking lot.  They told us we could, so we parked the rig there.  Then I asked if we could stay in the camper, the guy I talked to said sure, so we made dinner, and settled down to watch a movie.

view out the window. Doesn't look like Truckee.

view out the window. Doesn’t look like Truckee.

At 7:00 PM I get a phone call from Car Max saying that we had to leave.  We couldn’t stay on the property, so we called our son, who came and picked us up.  They also told us we had to move the trailer by Friday.

Our back up vehicle wasn’t up to the job, so we tried to rent a truck to pull the trailer home.  We tried U-Haul, but their trucks came with a 2″ ball (the trailer takes a 2 5/16), and the ball is welded onto the truck.  Everyone else didn’t allow towing with their trucks.  We tried to get Car Max to give us more time, but they wouldn’t budge.


Meats can do a lot, just not tow a trailer.
Miatas can do a lot, just not tow a trailer.  Note the vast parking lot.

We finally called a tow company, who for $350.00 pulled the trailer home.

tow truck home.
tow truck home.

We finally got her back home safe and sound.  Nobody was hurt, although the tow truck driver hit some bumps at speed, and caused all sorts of havoc in the trailer.

Home again all safe and sound.
Home again all safe and sound.

Jeep is ordering me a new motor, it’s under warrantee.  How long it is going to take to fix I don’t know, but our Alaska dream trip isn’t going to happen.  Marian needs a medical procedure in the middle of August, so there just isn’t time.  Ah well, it could be worse.


The Third Trip; Big Waves

Pillar Point RV park

Back to Half Moon Bay we went, to lounge in the sun while the “Men Who Ride Mountains” participated in the Maverick’s surf competition. Picture 30 – 40 foot waves pounding down on a sharp coral bed which happens to be right in the middle of one of the Great White Shark’s breeding grounds.  For those of us without a death wish, it was a great day to walk on the beach and saunter up to the Half Moon Bay Brewing co..   This is our favorite restaurant on the coast that lets you take your dog in to the outside patio.



At the brewing company



Maverick is out there somewhere




The beach


Riding the small waves





view from the rv park


Sunset was great