Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Death Valley Warmup Ride Report, Part 2

Karen Chaton

I’ll start with what it was like just getting to the ride. For a few days leading up to the trip, we were experiencing extremely cold temperatures (for here). We’d had a high temp the day before I left of 16, while it got down into the minus 10 and teens at night. A storm had come in a couple of days ahead of the really cold temps and dropped a foot and a half of snow.

It took me awhile traipsing through the snow just to get everything loaded into the trailer for the trip. The day before I ran an extension cord from the barn to the trailer. I brought out a small electric heater figuring I’d turn it on inside the trailer LQ to keep things from getting too cold. At temperatures below zero, things will still burst inside the refrigerator. The only problem with that idea is that I overloaded the circuit breaker in the barn. Between the lights in the barn, the two stock tank heaters and the trailer it was just too much. And of course, I found out by noticing that the horses water trough was frozen the next morning. Doesn’t take long in minus temps. Fortunately it didn’t freeze enough to kill the fish. They have been frozen before and come back to life.

Each time the breaker tripped I’d have to go back and forth from the house through the snow, until I realized that it was a losing battle and just ended up unplugging the trailer and forgetting trying to heat it and didn’t pack any food ahead of time.

snowtable 150x150 Death Valley Warmup Ride Report, Part 2The road conditions during this time were horrible. It’s almost a week later (today) and the county finally came along and plowed our street. Ha! I knew that I wouldn’t be able to leave early and had to watch for my window of opportunity so that I could get from here down to Coso Junction. It’s about 270 miles if I go down Highway 395. It adds at least an hour if I go around through Nevada and come over Montgomery Pass. Dave put the chains for both the truck and the trailer in the back seat of my truck. I really wasn’t looking forward to the idea of having to chain up. I just don’t like hauling horses in those kinds of conditions.


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