I said in my last Publisher’s letter that I couldn’t believe where summer had gone. I’m still wondering. I do know I spent almost every weekend of the summer re-building my small writing studio on the side of the mountain near Bellvue. I love the mountains. As a native Coloradan, I always have.
Despite two wildfire evacuations in 3 weeks, optimist that I am, I decided to purchase a small second-hand RV from Craigslist and make my stays on “my mountain” more frequent. It’s “vintage” as they say. My boys and I named her (my RV) “Revela.”
“She” has everything I need. Toilet, sink, tanks, beds, refrigerator, table, and furnace. I spent the last few weeks making sure the wheels would roll and the brakes would stop. A good friend contributed linens, silverware, and unbreakable dishes making it far homier.
With a new battery, a mounted flat screen tv, installed Wi-FI, and filled propane tanks, I tightened up the tongue to the hitch and hit the Poudre Canyon Highway.
That was the easy part.
I spent the entire day on Saturday widening portions of my road with someone with a skid steer. Then I spent another 6 hours at daybreak on Sunday cutting down 15 trees. Eighteen inches at the base, these trees were HUGE dead standing trees leftover from the High Park Fire 8 years ago. With how my year has gone so far, I had to eliminate ANY chance that a tree would come smackdown on Revela.
The roads up on my mountain are tight and they are steep. On Sunday afternoon, I left the boys at home with mom and asked my friend, Matt, to spot the road.
I needed a lookout to ensure I wouldn’t have to back up for oncoming traffic. Well, even with help, I had to back up. Not because of anything he did but because of a tree here and a tree there and good ‘ole fashioned GRAVITY.
A portion of my road is about 45 degrees UP. I knew this might be a challenge. Matt said I was crazy. He even got out of the truck and walked up the hill. But I have been pulling trailers since I was sixteen. And I had my truck and 4-lo.
Momentum was going to be key. So, at the bottom of the hill, I went for it. I put the pedal to the metal — literally. The trailer and the truck were bouncing over the uneven road until I lost my momentum about 2/3’s of the way up. All 4 wheels on the truck dug into the road as Revela started to pull me backward. Thank God for those trailer brakes! She stopped!
I had just spent the entire previous day widening and smoothing out that road. Oh well, I’d have to fix that later.
Matt said I should back up and go home. I said NO! It’s going up! Thanking God again for the brakes on the trailer, saying a prayer or two, and then using my skills to inch slowly back another 50 feet, I gunned it AGAIN. And we made it!
So with all that, Revela is probably on the mountain to stay. But we made it there safely and I have the video and pictures to prove it. “She” can’t thank me — but my boys will.
With that same perseverance, I expect to enjoy many more years on this mountain sharing adventures like this in North Forty News.
But as importantly, I hope this story provides a life lesson. Dig in. If your wheels dig down, and everything comes to a stop — and even if you backslide, try again. Eventually, you will reach the top — and it will be worth it!
I’m looking forward to spending more time up here. And I’m looking forward to winter because that means 2020 will finally come to an end and a fresh new year will begin!
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