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Friday, February 4, 2011

Montana October 2010 Part 1

I had scheduled myself to be off for two weeks and was planning to drive out to Montana and work with the dogs before it got cold. The plan was to have ten days for cart training. I wanted to see how the dogs would run with each other and where I should put them in the team. I did not want to wait until the snow fell and I did not have as much control over them from a sled. I had purchased a used pickup truck during the summer and was going to use it in my new business venture, raising and running sled dogs.

A few days before I was to leave, the ABS and brake lights came on. Everyone was worried that my brakes were going bad and I did not want that to happen while I was out west, driving over mountains. The dealer kept it for a few days and ran it through their diagnostic computer, but could not find anything wrong. I had my mechanic visually inspect all the brake lines, cylinders and pads and drain and refill the brake fluid. Nothing changed. I decided it was OK to drive and left for Montana five days later than planned. I stopped for gas in East St. Louis and was sitting at the red light, waiting to turn onto the ramp to get on the interstate, when a man drove up beside me and yelled, “You have a bad water leak.” When the light changed, I waited until it was safe and got out of line. I pulled into a gas station at the corner and stopped. There was a lot of clear fluid dripping onto the ground from under the hood, but when I raised the hood to look, it was not coming from the radiator or water lines. It was diesel fuel coming from the water separator that had come loose. I had to replace it with a spare one I had. This was providential. If I had continued I would have either run out of gas on the interstate, or I might have had a fire in the engine compartment.

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