Slopes, Hills and Vehicles

Slopes and Hills – not great for the Lincoln or the RV.   Both the RV and the Lincoln have each run into a problem when encountering hilly terrain.  Luckily, in both cases we only had one vehicle with us and were not towing a second.  One day Mike and I were out in the Lincoln exploring.  Since we were in a car we could drive down smaller roads that we wouldn’t consider in the RV.  We were on one narrow gravel road when we came to a very small wooden bridge that might have been built for the thousands of ATVs that you see around the island.  It certainly didn’t look like it was built for cars.  We decided to turn around.  We were on a slope down towards this bridge.  Just behind us and up the slope a bit was an opening with plenty of room to turn around.  Mike put the car in reverse and nothing happened.  The wheels didn’t spin and the car didn’t move.  Mike then rolled forward a little to give us a better run at the slope.  By driving forward the front wheels were almost touching the wood of the tiny, fragile bridge.  Now we had nowhere forward we could go.  Mike put the car into reverse and again nothing happened. By this point I am extremely concerned.  We are in the middle of absolutely nowhere with no cell phone signal and the car won’t physically go backwards and has a little ATV bridge in front it.  Mike decided to try and push the car.  I got into the driver’s seat, Mike got out and pushed and voila! we were driving backwards.  I reversed up the slope and got the car to the opening to turn around in.  It took a while for my heart to slow down.  We took the car to a dealer in St. John’s and apparently we need a new transaxle (whatever that is).  I gather it is important but would take three weeks to have one shipped to St. John’s.  We decided that we would have to wait to have it replaced when we get home.  We will have to be much more careful about where we take the Lincoln between now and then.  We have already had one more small scare about not being able to reverse with the car when we needed to.

That was the car, the RV incident was somewhat interesting as well.  We were in Ferryland and saw advertisements for lighthouse picnics.  You needed reservations but that didn’t matter as we were more interested in the location of the lighthouse than the picnics.  Lighthouses normally are in areas of nice hikes and great views.  At this particular lighthouse the Lighthouse Ladies cook fresh bread and make jam and prepare a lovely picnic all inside the lighthouse.  That day was the last picnic of the season.  If the weather wasn’t conducive to outdoor picnicking the lighthouse would be available for you to eat in.  The road up the hill to the lighthouse was very narrow but it was paved.  You had to really carefully pull over and stop when you met a vehicle going the other way.  Mike was a bit concerned about having nowhere to turn the RV around.  I knew that it wouldn’t be a problem because there had to be a parking lot for the lighthouse.  Since it was a tourist attraction and offered the special lighthouse picnics and had a paved road there would obviously be a parking lot at the end.  Well we were a long way up the hill when the road all of a sudden narrowed even further and turned to gravel.  Worse than that was the sign that said ATVs only on this gravel road.  Here Mike and I were in a 37 foot long RV facing up the cliff on a very narrow paved road with drop offs on both sides.  Mike ended up slowly backing the RV down the entire hill.  We looked at the dashcam afterwards and it looked scary.  I am so lucky that my husband is an excellent driver and doesn’t panic easily.

The picture below shows the spot where the paved road becomes gravel.  This was actually extracted from our dashcam.  What you can’t see in the picture is how the gravel road up above continues to narrow even further.lighthouse-hill-2

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