Monday, April 15, 2013

Airborne over the Yukon


Retracing Uncle John's motorcycle trek from Fairbanks to Seattle should be easy. GPS, fleece, nylon, thinsulate, smartphone, hemi Dodge Ram Big Horn; I've got a lot of stuff he didn't.

But every time I add something to the pile of stuff I want to take with me to Alaska, I have to add even more stuff.  Which in turn, requires more stuff.

So if I want to put a camper on the back of my truck, I have to add air springs.  These little air-baggies "pump up sagging trucks to carry up to two thousand extra pounds!"  The instructions promised two hours to install but didn't allow for putting the brackets in upside down the first time, trips to the hardware store for stuff to install the stuff.  $237 for the Air Lift springs plus another $67 for drill bits and stuff.

If you add air springs you'll want to bolt a big anti-sway bar on the back axle so the truck won't "handle like the Queen Mary" and try to roll over on the hump back side roads of the Yukon. $232. 

If you do the anti sway bar you will want tie downs for your camper, like Tork-lift's heavy steel flanges you bolt to the frame of the truck to  keep the camper from sliding off the back or flipping over the side. $239.  Plus anchors you bolt into the rear truck bumper for the same reason.  $59.  The truck could use a new heavy duty (and very heavy) battery; $139. New hoses, belts brake pads, ball joints etc. etc. $1,305. 

This stuff adds up and it's only truck stuff. My stuff  (a fork?  two forks?  Power toothbrush or manual? 2,000 watt generator?) will be extra.

While I weigh the cost and weight of a memory foam gel mattress, a sweet deal on a Club Le Med down alternative comforter filled with "down like polyester fibers" on Groupon, and whether or not I should add a pry bar to my tool bag, I can hear my Uncle cackling.
He and Slim Williams made the trip with almost nothing but a motorcycle, an axe and a tarp.  They didn't even have a road.


2 comments:

Wendy Marquis said...

Love your writing and your sense of humor so very much!
Thanks for your help with the titles!

Wendy Marquis said...

LOve your writing and your sense of humour, Bob! Can't wait to hear stories from the trail.....