I’m going to disappoint a lot of people with this one.
For the past several days, I have been redesigning the trip. I’ve been thinking that this is going to have to be a prelude to Tierra del Fuego.
The Rover has been running fine, but there are things that I have to do to it so that I can maximize the chances of this being successful, as well as maximizing my enjoyment of the trek.
One issue is my range: the gas tank is just too small for this type of run. The jerry cans are suppose to be there for an emergency, but I’m relying on them as if they were an extension of the tank. Twice, someone has tried to steal the fuel cans from the roof. If I lose them when I really need them, I’ll be in trouble. I knew this was an issue before I set out, but I didn’t see the jerry cans as something someone would try to steal. I only locked the frame because I happened to have an extra padlock that matched the one on the fuel cap.
The second issue that I want to improve is the GPS. I’ve read all these tales from other trekkers who grow to call their navigation system The GPS God or other such high ranking names of affection. Unfortunately, I’m down here with the Boo Radley of GPS mapping. “World Maps” by Garmin is simply horrible. My unit has basically become a high tech speedometer for kilometers. It gives Bad Information, which in my opinion is worse than No Information. Driving the Old Rover solo while trying to look at a paper map is just not the best proposition. For once in my life, I’m actually in favor of adding some technology to it. I didn’t plan this out well, mainly because I’ve never used a GPS in my car, so I didn’t know what to expect. Garmin should be utterly ashamed to be marketing this product, it really is that bad.
I also really want to take some time to do some things to The Rover to make adjustments for the heat. My Rover was brought into Canada originally, so it has always been geared for colder weather. Driving in 90+ degrees for eight hours at a time is just new for both of us. I can see now that I can make some improvements to make us both more comfortable.
In the end though, it does boil down to money, and I think I am going to come up short here. I left Alaska much later than I had planned, mainly due to work on The Rover. The roads are going to dictate speeds less than even I had planned on with a slow Rover. I’m not in the position that I can miss this summer’s construction season. I honestly expected to be in better shape here than I am, due to a couple of unforeseen, non-trip related expenses. It happens, it’s life.
When I did get the late start from Alaska, I thought about delaying the trip until September 2011, but I was impatient and just wanted to be on the road. I’m extremely happy that was the decision I came to, even if it wasn’t based on any type of logic. This has been a great drive in its own right, with close to 9000 miles driven. Without this drive, I wouldn’t have the information I have now to improve the trip. I needed a test run… an extended test run, in my 109.
I want this trip to be successful, for that to happen I have a few more things to do.
So. The decision has been made. I’ll work on The Rover, add some things, convert some things, pack more spare parts, improve my Spanglish, budget for the corrupt officers and try to recruit a co-pilot for a September 2011 take off.
Be patient with us. We’ll get there, wherever “there” happens to be.

About icefogger

Just a basic, down to Earth, laid back type of guy here, who loves the outdoors, the indoors, jazz on the turntable, a fire in the woodstove, the northern lights blazing across the sky, and the company of good friends. View all posts by icefogger

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