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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

What do you mean the slides won’t retract?

This morning we woke up to the sound of wild turkeys gobbling beside the RV! We knew we needed to get going early since today was going to be a very long, hard day of driving, but we didn’t need the turkeys telling us to get going too!

It had snowed overnight in Fort Steele and this was our first experience packing up Newman with snow on the slide toppers. We first tried to close the passenger side slide, and it wouldn’t close all the way. The we tried the driver’s side slide. Same thing. It wouldn’t retract enough to be able to lock. Richard got the bright idea that maybe there was snow on the slide toppers and he needed to clean off the snow, before the slides would fully retract. So out from our basement comes the ladder and the snow brush and Richard cleaned off the slide toppers, and finally the slides fully retracted so we could lock them. Of course this delay in dealing with the slide toppers, added an extra hour to our departure time this morning and we didn’t get out of Fort Steele until 9am.

The road leading out of Fort Steele into Cranbrook is one that trucks often get stuck on if they don’t have enough acceleration heading up the road. Of course with the snow falling overnight this was our first concern of the day! We needed to make sure we had a good head of steam to get up the snowy hill!....and we made it NO PROBLEM!

Today we drove for 10 hours and 525km! We also had to go through 4 mountain passes with the last and most difficult pass heading into Osoyoos called “ANARCHIST’’ pass. Talk about switchbacks and crazy, difficult roads! The good news was the roads were clear as we did the difficult mountain passes. To get through the passes I would look at the GPS and warn Richard what was coming up. He had the transmission in 2nd gear going down the pass and we could smell the asbestos coming from the brake pads! The Allison transmission on Newman was a champ on these crazy roads! If we had waited another day we would have been unable to get through the passes as they were calling for snow for the next two days in the mountains.

One of the things we learned today was about RUNAWAY LANES! Whenever there was a Runaway Lane on the mountain pass, we knew there would be a very, very, very steep down hill grade. I couldn’t imagine having to use one of these lanes to try and slow Newman down! It’s a very good thing that Richard did all of his certifications before we left home and got his “Z” air brake license. It sure came in handy today knowing how to use those engine brakes!!

What we really enjoyed today was the different bridges we went through. All different colours and nice to photograph too.

We had planned on staying at a winery this evening in Cawston but we learned their restaurant was closed and we had planned on takeout...oh we drove on about an hour longer than we had planned In the dark and here we are in another Walmart parking lot...this time in Penticton!

We also crossed over into the Pacific time zone so if the blog is a little later coming to everyone back East that’s why. We will be on this time zone until the spring now!

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Nov 19, 2020

Great to read the blog. I am happy to see you are getting closer to your destination. Safe travels.


Nov 18, 2020

We stayed in Penticton to watch the curling a few years back....stay safe


Nov 18, 2020

Sounds like a good day with not too many aggravations aside from the turkeys.

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