Where the cows and the antelope play

Colorado Rose

Day 9. First, I need to thank everyone for the feedback you are leaving on the novel. We are getting as many comments on the book as our blog! That feels really good. Maybe we do have a winner.

OK, the rally. We left the horses in Dodge City. OK, not all of them, we did see lots of them in Colorado too. But the big sightings were antelope. We don’t have them in N.Carolina so seeing them is special. Sorry, not close enough for photos. We saw a lot of them today but even more cows. Outside the fence even, right along the road. LOTS of cows and grain silos. Not much else, actually. Oh, yes, llamas. A whole pasture full. Not an everyday sight.

Bad news today was not ours. Jack Crabtree who had a new engine installed in Dodge City, had to take it back out and put in his old engine. Seems a piston is defective. 😦 . He was up until 3:00 with the guys making this change. I didn’t tell you that the night before, he got up at 3:00 to drive the car from Kansas City to Dodge to get the new one put in. So that makes two nights of no sleep. I don’t know how he is doing this. Putting in a new engine in the middle of a trip like this doesn’t  sound like a good idea to me, and probably not to Jack now either.

Jack had his Ford Model A at our launch party, April 3rd.

The wind continues and the engine was cutting out, so  I didn’t drive today. Hard to keep the car on the road and anxiety in check. Ed thinks now the cutting out we experienced today and earlier was not due to the distributor rotor or fuel mix, but due to a 12 volt wire to the distributor coming in contact with the manifold and partially shorting out. We had this problem and similar cause with the 190 SL. Gary (see next paragraph) rerouted the wire and we will see tomorrow. This is Ed using his personal method to stay alert.  Don’t even bother to comment on the health thing here, it’s better than falling asleap.

Tonight in The Mile High City, well, Golden actually. Just on the west side of Denver. Once again we made our time. We have every day so far. Still no scores.

Before we started I had an email from Gary Bergman from Frisco, Colorado saying he would do anything and make any repair we needed to keep Stewball going.  He’s the guy under the car here.


Gary and Stewball

He adjusted the valves, rotated the tires and a few other things too, wouldn’t accept any payment, brought me a rose for my bud vase and then took us out to dinner! We did give him an autographed book to keep as part of his involvement in this adventure. These VW guys are the best. We’ve met a lot of them along the way and they really are available to us 24/7. What a group. 

Tomorrow, Gateway Canyon, Co. We’ll reach 11,000 ft, so we (make that Gary)  advanced the spark timing and leaned the fuel mixture. Ed will have to reverse this once we get back to 5000 feet. Meantime, Stewball needs all those 53 horsepower to stay on time with all this climbing.


About ejhowle23

Authors and adventurers, participated in the World Race 2011, an automobile rally from New York to Paris, crossing three continents and 14,000 land miles. Following much the same route as the setting for our debut novel, The Long Road to Paris. This blog describes our own adventures and challenges. And now you can follow our Bahamas sailing adventure that provides the setting for our second novel, Night Watch. Our rally, the African Safari Challenge, crossed five countries in South Africa in May 2014 and in 2015 we participated in the second Trans-American rally this time from Nova Scotia to San Francisco. Spring of 2016 we travelled 28 days around Australia with friends from previous rallies and in the fall participated in our most exhausting rally through Argentina, Chili and Peru- the Rally of the Incas. We were awarded the Against All Odds award. We're still not sure if this was for us or our car. Stewball never broke down and we hardly did. We will soon take on Iceland as a self-drive tour and in the fall of 2017 we will participate in the Odyssey Italia and then back to Africa for a do-over (almost) of the Africa Safari Challenge.
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7 Responses to Where the cows and the antelope play

  1. Leslie (written by Alexis) says:

    I love you grandma and papa. I wish I was there to see the llamas. I like the beetle just the way it is and I hope you have a good trip.

  2. TBC says:

    Yes, rotating the tires is a very good thing. Not only does it save the tires, but it saves on gas mileage, too!

    Glad Stewball is getting such a good support system.


    TBC and Arnie, just back from OBX

  3. Milford Whitaker says:

    Thanks for each update and great photos…what model camera are you using.

  4. Judy Close says:

    Barry and I are vicariously following you from Windy Hill Road. I can’t believe what you have done so far … and you haven’t even left the US! Best of luck and enjoy every minute.

  5. jackie salitan says:

    Just started reading the book this morning! It’s a page turner for sure; I am also learning things about rally racing. Lucky you to have VW experts along the way to keep Stewball performing! Oh, does Ed make that gesture of rubbing his forehead the way the Ed character in the book does? I’m picturing him doing that at a work table in Paris as he worked on a design. True or imagined? Have to get back to the book… 🙂

  6. ejhowle23 says:

    Great. No, the real Ed chews on his index finger when he’s working or thinking but that was too hard to describe in a book and does sound a little weird!

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