Sunday, June 27, 2021

Friday and Saturday.......

 8:19 am - Sunday - June 27th - Seal Rock, OR - 63° F, 94% humidity, wind - zero mph out of the north.....clear, blue skies today with an amazing forecast high today of 80° F.....yes, you read correct....80° F!  The highest high and the highest low in months on the same day!

On this date in 2016 TLE and I were visiting good friends Dan and Carol Gates at Incline Beach, NV (Lake Tahoe).....they rented a cabana for the day.....↴

Well, once again I am two days behind in posting, so let's get to work!

I last posted about our Thursday afternoon drive south to Redding, CA to get our Beetle smogged.  Every other year California requires your vehicle(s) to pass a smog test in order to continue operating it/them on California highways.  This year we are a long way from the California border (300 miles, or so), and it's not just a matter of driving down the street to the local smog test facility....this is, at the very least, an overnight affair.

We were up around 7 am Friday morning to drive the last 141 miles to Redding.  We were dressed, and out the door before 7:30 am, and after a 2.5 hour drive arrived safely at A-1 Smog and Repair on Market Street in Redding.  Of particular note no one at the facility was wearing a mask...not an employee, or customer.....wonderful! We've owned this car for 7 years, and it has never failed to pass a smog test, and technically it didn't this time.  The problem was the computer memory was blank.  There are numerous computer 'monitors' which record data about the performance of your engine, and before the test can be run they must download the data from those monitors.  Nothing is ever easy when you are a Hockwald, and why should this be any different, right?

Redding, CA is south of Mt. can see the top of it from almost 100 miles away!

Getting close!

So, what is the solution?  How do we get those monitors to record the information needed to take the smog test?  Simple.....let the car sit for 8 hours, and then do a 'cold start' (cold is a relative term when the temps are in the 100's in Redding).  That means we would have to get a hotel room, wait 8 hours follow the driving instructions given to us by Gabe, our technician, an go back to A-1 first thing Saturday morning.  

What are the 'driving instructions' you might wonder....well, after 8 hours you start the car, turn on the headlights, and A/C, and let it sit idling for 2.5 minutes.  Then you begin driving accelerating up 55 mph, then let the car decelerate down to 20 mph without touching the brakes, then accelerate back up to 60 mph holding that speed for exactly 3 minutes then decelerate down to idle  in high gear which occurs somewhere around 15 mph.  The more times you can do this the better the chance the data fields will be populated by the monitors.

One of our reasons fr choosing Redding as our destination is they have a COSTCO, a Trader Joe's, a Target, and, most importantly, an In 'N Out Burger.  After our disappointing news at A-1 we headed first to COSTCO where NO masks were being worn by 98% of the people.  We next hit Target, then Trader Joe's, and finally In 'N Out Burger.....

Two #2 Combos, thank you very much....and get can actually fill your own cup with soda again.....NO masks there either!

Look at that pile of fresh cut fries!

While we were eating our cheese burgers we began to search for another hotel in which to spend the night, and found a room at the local Red Lion Inn just a few blocks away.  Check in time is normally 3 pm, but they got us in a room by 1:30 pm, right across from the swimming pool.  Cool, let's take a swim on a 100° day, but the pool was locked due to the Wuhan Flu.....doh!  Okay, time for a long nap.

So, the first 8 hour interlude came at 9:30 pm that night, so we ran the test completing the 55 mph and 60 mph portion on I-5 southbound.  The next 8 hour interlude came at 5:30 am Saturday morning, so we were up at 6 am, and in the car doing the second run through on I-5 northbound this time.  The smog test facility opened at 7 am, and after completing the test, and getting a cup of coffee at a local Starbucks, we were there waiting our turn.....

No masks in Starbucks, plus you can sit at a table inside, or outside!!!! took about 30 minutes to find out that all the data fields had been populated except for the 'air flow' field.....doh! close, but no cigar.  There are no smog test places open in Redding on Sunday, and there was not enough time to do the 8 hour cool down and cold start again before they closed at 3 pm.....double doh!

There was no way we were going to spend two more nights in Redding twiddling our thumbs, so we decided to make the entire drive home to SRRVC in one day, complete the new test designed specifically to populate the 'air flow' field on Sunday, then return to Yreka, CA (100 miles closer) in a couple of weeks where there is another A-1, 4 star smog facility, and get the test done.

By this time it was a little after 8 am, so we took a restroom break and hit the road back to SRRVC.  I drove until a rest stop just before Medford, OR, then TLE took over until we exited the I-5 for US-138 in Sutherlin, OR where we got a couple of frappuccinos to go before continuing our drive back to Coastal Oregon.

Of particular note....on this trip we found that the I-5 corridor in Oregon from Sutherlin, OR (where we merged onto I-5) all the way south to the California border is still behaving as it if where March of 2020, not June of 2021.  There were ZERO restaurants, fast food places, or coffee bars open for dine in service.....only takeout....PERIOD.  In complete contrast to this California is about 98% back to normal....go figure.

We reached Reedsport and US-101 around 1:30 pm, and decided to stop at a local restaurant called Harbor Light for lunch.  They have a wonderful Yelp rating of 4.5 stars on 439 reviews, and is that ever right on the money!  WOW! There we found no one wearing masks, not even the wait refreshing to see your server's face once again, and to hear him/her speak clearly without a piece of cloth muting his/her voice.

I ordered a pint of amber ale, and their Elk/bacon burger with onion rings, and TLE the Smoked Turkey sandwich with really good coleslaw.  We dined alfresco, of course..... the time we finished and paid our tab (only $36!) it was after 2 pm, and we were still 60 miles from home.  We managed to cover that final 60 miles in under two hours, arriving back at site A-2 around 3:45 pm to a beautiful high 60's afternoon!

Of course, clear skies give us a shot at another Coastal Oregon sunset, and we got just that.....

.....and what better way to end my two for the price of one blog post....thank you so much for stopping by!

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1 comment:

  1. Holy cow what an ordeal....glad your back home safely and hope the next trip ticks off all the boxes!


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