Sunday, July 7 (continued)
It’s about noontime when the crew and I leave Brien and Desiree at their shop. I drive back across the highway to Wal-Mart. One of the cotter pins that holds the sway bar on the hitch has disappeared in the landfill that is the back of the PTV. I don’t like to tow without the sway bar, even on a calm day.
The PTV handles better with the sway bar on.
The guy in the hardware department shows me what they’ve got – hitch pins. They look like they might fit and for less than a dollar, I’ll give them a try. After picking up a few items like another rotisserie chicken, I go out to the parking lot and put on the sway bar. The pin will work fine on one end, the original cotter pin on the other.
Off we go, on the road again!
The plan is to drive northwesterly on Route 132 through Moroni and Fountain Green to Nephi, a short trip of 40 miles, give or take. At Nephi I can dump tanks, fill the fresh water tank, and buy propane. Then I’ll backtrack six miles and turn left onto the Nebo Loop National Scenic Byway (Forest Road 048). The road goes to Ponderosa Campground, but if I can find a boondock on the way through the Uinta National Forest, I’ll take it.
Somewhere between Moroni and Fountain Green, the air conditioner quits.
Absolutely dead. No fan. No cold air. Am I bothered by this? Not a bit. I’m so dang happy that we aren’t stuck in the Wal-Mart parking lot back in Ephraim, another repair is just something to take care of another day. I bring down the windows. The rush of air heightens my sense of adventure.
Off to the left dark clouds hover over the Sanpitch Mountains.
A shroud of heavy rain covers the slopes. Our drive, however, is clear sailing under blue skies. Route 132 carries us toward a divide in the mountains. By the time I see the divide, the dark thunderclouds have shifted to lie in wait for our approach like an demon resting on its haunches. I realize in a few miles we’ll drive right into a thunderstorm.
Hmm . . . change of plans. To heck with going to Nephi. We’ll take the Nebo Loop into the Uinta National Forest and find our camp for the night.
Rain pounds on the PTV in sheets.
I can hardly see the road. Once on the Nebo Loop, I stop by the side of the road. Spike and Bridget look at me with questioning eyes. “Nothing to worry about, guys. Just a little rainstorm. We’ll sit here and wait it out.” I turn on the radio. The first station I find is NPR which, along with the drumming of the rain, immediately calms the crew into a stupor.
The rain lets up for a few minutes.
I make a mad dash to the BLT, cut off some of the rotisserie chicken onto a plate, and run back to the PTV. The three of us devour the chicken while the windows steam up and the music plays. After a while I pull back onto the road.
Another change of plans . . .
Even though I see several campers tucked under trees along a creek and there are a few private places where we could camp, I decide against it. No sense risking getting stuck in mud and I don’t want to deal with eight muddy paws.
By the time we reach Ponderosa Campground the storm has passed.
It’s a shady, woodsy place in pines and cottonwoods.
Salt Creek flows on one side of the campground.
The campground road and parking pads are paved. I find a pull-through site with no other site nearby or in view.
First thing I do is walk Bridget and Spike around the campground. They sniff the markers left on trunks of pine trees.
I imagine they’re thinking . . . Gee, it’s good to be on blacktop again!
Then I set up their pen, put them in it with a bowl of water and their beds . . .
Spike dozes off. Bridget’s eyes follow my every move.
I pull out my camp chair, and relax in the dappled shade with a cool drink.
“Well, we made it, guys. What a day!”
NOTE: I usually put a thank you to RVSue shoppers here, along with links to recent purchases. I have to skip the links today. It takes a long time. The crew and I are getting very warm sitting in the PTV with no air conditioning. We had to drive into town in order to pick up a strong enough signal to post.
I send a sincere thanks for every reader who uses my links to go to Amazon . . .
Now go shopping!