Following the route for our third option, we had to pass through several smaller towns. I’ve never been in this part of Washington state before so I was enjoying the scenic route. My son was in the back seat and took a little nap and his girlfriend was riding shotgun.
The third option took us up through Stevens Pass, which is where a lot of folks ski and snowboard. As we approached the base of our climb the weather started turning from rain to a snow and ice mix which made road conditions tricky. But my truck Betsy was handling it just fine.
As we climbed, the temperature reading on Betsy’s gauge was showing a steady drop from 45 fahrenheit to 34 to 27.
Now after we left the second route clogged with cars stuck in the snow, I switched Betsy back to regular two wheel drive. So when Betsy caught ice on top of Mt. Baker she was still in two wheel drive.
Now let’s step back even further. I’m not a native Oregonian but hail from the southern part of Texas where snow is seldom seen and hardly ever will you find icy roads. The only experience with snowy and icy roads were through a simulation during drivers education class in high school (which was many, many moons ago).
Another part of this scenario was the variable speed limit sign was reading 50 mph. We were going about 45 when we began sliding.
It’s funny what your mind remembers. I handled the spin as I should have and let off the gas and steered in the direction of the spin. Betsy started spinning the other direction. I followed her spin and steered in the new direction. She began spinning the other direction again. I quick steered in the new direction and Betsy finally straightened out. I switched her to 4 wheel drive and immediately felt all four wheels engage with the snow and ice surface.
I’m not sure what was going through the mind of my son’s girlfriend as we began to go into a spin. But the look on her face indicated it wasn’t pleasant. After recovering from the fishtail spin, I looked over and apologized to her as I saw her eyes were 5 times wider than normal. I reassured her that Betsy won’t spin out again for the duration of our trip.
And Betsy held true to my word. The rest of our destination was uneventful other than the spectacular beauty of the snow covered trees and riverbanks.
We pulled into Leavenworth around 4:30, found a place to park, and walked about town. The buildings were architectured and designed to look and feel like a small German town.
Earlier that day the town held their ice sculpture and snow carving competitions. The results were on display. They even had their town Christmas trees fully decorated with brightly colored lights and ornaments in the town square.
We found a restaurant and had a great meal and headed back to my son’s and his girlfriend’s apartment. This time I had Betsy in 4 wheel drive all the way up and down the mountain.
But we still haven’t snowshoed! That’s tomorrow’s adventure…
#snowshoeing #leavenworthwashington, #bratwurstandsauerkraut #bratwurst #sauerkraut #germancuisine #refuel #naturesbeauty