Countdown To A Sub-Zero Escape

The clock is ticking.  I’m on a countdown to escaping this crazy Minnesota sub-zero November.  There is so much to do to prepare for enjoying months of work and play clear across the country.

Step one involved a quick overnight trip to Leech Lake November 5th  to conduct inventory; one day of carefully choosing, scaling down, and organizing the business and personal  items in my Toy Hauler that will be traveling south with us this winter.  That in itself was no small feat.  But I managed to make hard decisions and figure out what could stay and what had to go.  It was 40 some degrees and clear during that brief trip. After walking around the property, it was apparent to me that I was going to have an extremely difficult time trying to get the Toy Hauler out with my truck.  I measured, calculated, and raked the exit route, only to heighten my insecurity about pulling it out of there.  With a heavy sigh, I repeated in my head “you did it once, you can do it again”.

Then it was home until the 16th, to complete the organizing effort and wrap up winterizing at the house.  During that time, thank the Gods for great friends and neighbors.  To my eternally grateful surprise, June and Randy approached me and offered to go up to Leech with me in their ¾ ton Dodge Diesel to pull the Toy Hauler out.  Much more power, much safer for my trailer, my truck, and frankly, my friends lake property.  But we would have to do it the weekend of November 22nd.  It should be a snap.  How could I turn that down?

Step two, November 16th through the 19th.  The original plan was for Cindy and I to head up to Leech, spend a few days relaxing, I would complete the securing and pack-up process for traveling, and we would pull the Toy Hauler back to my place on the 19th.  We did the relaxing, and I did the organizing, but were no longer going to try to move the Toy Hauler with my truck.  Good thing, since there were few new issues, like;

  • It snowed.
  • Temperatures dropped to single digits, and at one point, fell below zero. In 3 days, the furnace burned through a 30 of propane, and everything was rock solid.
  • The ground was frozen with my stakes and boards in it.
  • Now because both of my propane tanks were bone dry, it forced us to bring all my frozen belongings into her nice, warm cabin where we spent most of the time we were up there.

But that’s okay.  We enjoyed a nice break together.

Step three, a little more complicated. After the monumental effort it took to park the toy hauler up at the property on Leech Lake, I knew that getting it out of there would be an epic event.  And it sure was….

First, let me say once again, thank the Gods for great friends and neighbors.  The plan was to head up to Leech Saturday November 22nd  and pull the trailer out of there with my good friends June and Randy.  We didn’t even get to Leech until almost dark, then struggled with getting the Toy Hauler furnace working again.Escape

Next we surveyed the property.  Everything was beyond frozen. After all, it’s been below zero for 15 days straight! The stakes, wood blocks and levelers were frozen into to the ground.  There was a layer of ice, covered by several inches of snow the entire length of the way out of the property, and it is all at an incline to get out.  We had a much, much work to do.

Then the temperature began rising, and soon it was above freezing.  Randy evaluated the situation, then began to shovel away a path around the storage shed to follow.  The snow was slushing up, uncovering a bit of ice that would likely turn to mud.  Soon we realized this was going to be a precarious Sunday project.

Sunday morning I was up early to walk the dogs and finish loading up my thawed belongings that were in the cabin.  The temperature climbed to over 40 degrees.  We should be dancing, but in fact, the warm temp turned our escape route into somewhat of an ice skating rink.  We were able to pull most of the stakes from the ground and pry the boards and levelers out, but knew we were in for an icy challenge.  Even with the massive power of his big truck, pulling the Toy Hauler uphill out of there was  going to be a sliding nightmare.  We hooked up, loaded dogs and overnight bags, and got started.Escape0

Escape1The initial 20 foot pull getting around the building went surprisingly smooth,  thanks to my earlier weed whipping and raking efforts to widen the space, and the shoveling Randy did, but the celebration ended there. The next section turning left up into the driveway and getting between the trees was beyond hell.

It was hard enough to get the Toy Hauler into the property under ideal dry conditions with less than a foot of clearance on each side.  But toss in the packed snow, ice and sliding?  Good gawd. Not even remotely reasonable.  Simply, totally, awful!

With June and I on walkie-talkies directing Randy, still, we tried, and….well…..his tires started spinning and what the hell, gutters are cheap…..so…..anyway…..it’s not that big of a deal that we clipped one o my gutters off on that damn tree…..at least we didn’t get my awning, too.

OMG.Escape2

Escape3OVER AN HOUR OF THE THREE OF US CHOPPING DOWN THE PACKED SNOW AND ICE ALL THE WAY UP TO THE ROAD FROM THE BUILDING, COMBINED WITH FOUR HOURS OF ATTEMPTS TO MANUVER THOUGH THE NARROW PROPERTY EXIT, SCRAPING THE SIDE OF THE TRAILER ON ONE OF THEIR SIGNS (YES, 3 MORE INCHES AND THE TOY HAULER WOULD HAVE WRAPPED THE TREE), TRYING TO SQUEEZE AND SLIDE UPHILL BETWEEN THOSE TWO DAMN TREES.

A clipped off gutter and a small scrape?Escape4

Oh, yes.  It could have been so much worse.

My trucks engine would have blown for sure.

Thank the Gods for Yoga and one nostril breathing.

Escape6Most importantly, a super huge Thank You for June and Randy who had the big truck, the man and woman power, and the where-with-all to hang in there with me to get it done.

I love my Toy Hauler.  And now we are one giant step closer to our Sub Zero Escape to warm weather.  After what I just went through, I may not ever come back!  The countdown continues………

Life is an adventure!  Are you waiting for an invitation to experience an amazing life full of adventure, or do you just go make your own?  There are lots of inspirational stories under my blog category, “PRs Amazing Outdoor Adventure Update”.  If you find yourself not doing what you love, I invite you to contact me for help to create your own, amazing adventure.  Please feel free to share with others who may find meaning and value in exploring the possibilities with PR Brady AdVentures.

Don’t Want to Miss a Thing? Subscribe to My Blog

Speak Your Mind

*