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Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Driving History 7: My last owned Canadian Car, the 93 Blazer part one

As it must happen, all cars get sold.  I sold the Maxima for two very important reasons.  The first is I had decided to emigrate from Canada.  The second is that I wanted to do a major road trip that summer- my final one as a resident of North America.  It would involve 10,000 km in about three weeks, and involved a round trip to Columbus, Ohio.  Putting the kms on the maxima would have lowered its value.  Besides, I wanted something that could carry more stuff.  I found one of these for around the $3000 mark.  Had a few miles on it, but she'd be right.

The Wife- though we weren't married yet, flies up from Australia and its time for the proving drive.  3000km through the wilds of British Columbia.

We started camping with Q at Cadomin.  It was on our way so we thought we'd begin there.  Then we spent the day driving around Jasper National Park, checking out Mt. Edith Clavell in particular.  It was the climb up the road that I began to realize something was wrong.  The Engine temperature began to climb, well above normal.  As I recall we had to stop part way up the hill for a brief time to let it cool down.  I thought it was a one off, it had never done it before.  And I didn't worry about it.

But things like this have a way of biting one in the ass, especially if one ignores the root cause.

That same trip, a thousand more kms down the road, we were driving down the length of the Okanagan Valley, reaching Osoyoos.  We saw this sign, complete with Union Jack, Real British fish and chips.  We thought, righto, sounds good.  So we had a meal there., got back in the car and started the big climb up the mountain on the Crowsnest.

That's when it bit us.  Or more accurately, thats when it bit my wife.  The engine temperature began climbing.

It reached a critical level and I had to pull off the road to wait until it cooled.  Only the fish and chips had run their course through the Wife's system.  It wanted out.  Now.

Only this mountainside didn't offer much in the way concealment.  I was doing everything I could to bring the temp down more quickly, I had popped the hood and was trying to fan the engine- she hadn't boiled over, but it was very close.  It still took time.  She was enduring the urge, I have no idea how, and about 1/2 to 45 minutes later I started the car, and we continued up the hill.

We made it to the top of the mountain with out stopping, and began to come down the hill.  The engine, once the load off it, cooled quickly, but we did pull up at the first roadside rest area.  The wife jumped out the car and ran for the women's.

I got out and walked to the men's.  I heard a scream.  I turned just as she came stalking towards me.  "Someone shit all over the floor in there."

I opened the door to the men's.  It was reasonably clean.  "Use this one."  She hesitated, but it wasn't for long.    I waited.

We only went as far as the first campground that day.  We pulled off, found a site backing onto a creek and pitched camp.  We stayed there 4 days, but it was a great place.  Absolutely lovely place to rest.

We did eventually find out what was wrong with the truck.   We made it to Grand Forks where the car was looked at and the radiator was power washed- apparently there was a extreme collection of dead bugs and debris on the face of the radiator.

Next Time:  Part 2:  Encounters in America


  1. If you're going as torgill does this mean I can be aganar?

  2. You can be whoever you want

  3. Well, at least, in the end, the problem was fixed. Who would have thought that it was just caused by dead bugs and debris? I think it would be a good idea to thoroughly check the car first before settling for it. Even if it’s just a minor problem, you don’t know if it will snowball into a larger one once you start driving it.

    1. Almost too hard to believe. To be fair on the dealer, there was a small grasshopper problem that year, but the problem didn't make itself apparent driving in a prairie city. Once we took it to the mountains, and put a hill climbing load on the engine... well it couldn't cool properly in those conditions.