Today we started off running the car through the Coconino Forest. We had a few problems from the start when the steam valve jammed open and we had to jump off, block the wheel, take off the seat and use a screwdriver to ping it back to the stop position. Basically, when that happens we lose control of the vehicle until it loses steam.
It happened quite a few times. Luckily not through sections where we were going downhill on a badly rutted road.
We also had a moment when I said that there was a funny noise…” Have we got a puncture?”
“Of course not!” We stopped after going round a right hand bend at the bottom of a hill.
“Oh, %#*!, we have a puncture!”
Chris, all dressed up and posing, with the flat tyre, whilst we wait for the cavalry.
We had run the tyre flat and ripped the valve right out of the inner tube, so we jacked the car up and did a roadside repair. Very conveniently it was decided that lunch and a cup of tea were in order.
A piece of wire through the tire and into the tube. Back up soon arrived with Brian Blue.
Lunch was a wonderfully laid on picnic brought to us by another group of helpers. Soon after it started to spit with rain and lightening and thunder, so we fired up the car again and set off 40 minutes later.
Some great runs out in the middle of nowhere, the car gliding along hardly making a sound. When the boiler is up to pressure and the burner shuts down all you hear is the occasional tick tick of the water clack valves. When the burner is blasting away just a faint whoo, whoo, whoo, whistling comes out of it. A deer bounced and lept through the trees and across our path, not sure what this whistling machine was. And Chris saw a polecat.
Packed down and dusty ground.
Or grassy and pine needles. Chris pumping up the fuel tanks.
We had a great run down to the main I road and it then starts to really rain so we called it a day. A fantastic day. Thanks to a lot of great and very kind people.