Long Day

Current Location: Gulf State Park, Gulf Shores, Alabama

This morning, Val was out the door early to run over to church to work with the sound system. She picked up our son, David, on the way. They did their thing for a couple hours, then headed back to the campground. David dropped Val off and took her car on to the house while we are away.

In the meantime, Malcolm finished the close-up and hooking up the trailer to the truck. He drove over to the dump station and took his time really cleaning out the tanks well while he waited on Val. We hit the road around 11:00 AM towards Gulf Shores, Alabama. The GPS indicated about a 3 1/2 hour drive there.

Dumping the tanks.

Dumping the tanks.

Thirty minutes into our trip, as we are traveling down I-65 still in Montgomery, a delivery van pulled up beside us and started motioning towards our trailer as if something were wrong. Windows were rolled down and he yelled that we had a flat tire. We thanked him and pulled over to the shoulder when we could find a decent place. By the time we pulled over, we could see smoke rolling out from the right-hand side tires on the trailer.

Shredded tire.

Shredded tire.

Malcolm called up Good Sam Roadside Assistance, explained our predicament and where we were and was promised someone would be there to help us change the tire within about an hour. About an hour later a truck pulled up and started to work on jacking up the trailer. However, his jack wasn’t sufficient, so he called another truck that had an air operated jack and a compressor and, between the two of them, they got us all fixed up.

Using the air jack.

Using the air jack.

Tire off, trying to get the axle high enough to get the spare on.

Tire off, trying to get the axle high enough to get the spare on.

Putting on the lug nuts and finishing up.

Putting on the lug nuts and finishing up.

The Good Sam Roadside Assistance pretty much paid for itself on this event. There was no charge at all for the roadside response. Just buying a heavy enough jack and carting it around would have been a hassle. Hopefully, we won’t have to do this too often.

Malcolm called our tire store at home to see what type of tires they had or could get, but after finding they would have to order most anything we needed, we decided to roll on down to Gulf Shores and risk not having another flat (we didn’t). Once parked, we’ll be here a week, so we’ve got time to track down someone to put new tires on the trailer (we’re going to replace all the cheapo foreign tires on it except the spare – the particular brand has a bad track record of failed tires).

We arrived at Gulf State Park and checked in around 5:30 PM. After setting up, we walked over to meet some of the other Heartland folks that are already here for the rally later in the week. We chatted for an hour or so and everyone broke off to head back and fix their respective dinners. The guys are going to try to go golfing tomorrow and we’re all planning on checking out a seafood restaurant for lunch.



One thought on “Long Day

  1. Hello Malcom and Valerie, WOW, what a way to start your trip! Glad everything worked out okay and that you were safe! Hope you will have smooth sailing the rest of the week. I am anxious to read about the rally.

    I spent a bit of time over the weekend catching up on your blog. My husband and I are new Big Horn owners (or will be when our unit arrives, hopefully within the next two weeks). Your Big Country is my FAVORITE model/floorplan. I really wanted that unit, but my DH felt it was too heavy and too long. We ended up purchasing a new model Big Horn…the 3370RK… it has a nice rear kitchen which was my “definite” criteria.

    I have really enjoyed reading about all the “upgrades” you have made to your unit. It has gotten me thinking about what I would like to do to make our new fifth-wheel “home”. We won’t be living in it full time for a while…I have my 85 year old Mom who needs us around. But we are hoping to do as much traveling as possible in it for short trips, and someday plan to do some cross-country excursions.

    Congratulations on your adorable granddaughters. We have 9 grandkids….2 girls and 7 boys!
    We live about 3 hours south of Seattle.

    Again, good luck and have fun at the rally!

    Doris Anderson

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