Thursday, July 8, 2010

The new office....

Chelsey here -

Our new office has a great view, I can see out of all the windows, there is a cool natural breeze coming  in and I can lie down or prop myself up - all while moving at 70 mph to our next destination. At this very moment I am lying down in the back of our 1991 Toyota writing this blog on our way from Bend Oregon to Telluride Colorado. While many of our blogs and videos have been written in transit- most mine have been written in our beloved Honda. However, she (the honda) made her last voyage to the Northwest last week.

She was an amazing companion to me, she gave me my first taste of true dirt bag freedom. The day I bought her, I packed up my climbing gear, bike and kayak and moved from Gunnison, Colorado to Moab, UT for the spring. After I saw how easy, cheap and fun it was to live out of my car while working and playing- it became a ritual. Every spring I would load her down with all of my gear and clothes needed until fall and I would head to the river. Since I have had her, she has had 6 different license plates in 7 years (that's a story on its own).

2 years ago, Jason moved in with me and we have been living out of her ever since. 2 bikes, 2 boats, 2 paddles, climbing gear, ice axes, skis and camping gear would all fit in (or on-top of) her. At 35 miles per gallon, she was a great car. She did however have her draw backs. To get to anything, we had to pull everything out, she didn't have any air conditioning, and such cramped quarters led to Jason and I bickering more often than usual. However, all in all- she was an amazing car. We were sad to say goodbye.

 On our drive from San Francisco to Portland she was running on 3 cylinders, by the time we got to Portland, it was more like two and a half. Going up and over mountain passes was slow, at times I thought we could have gone faster on our bikes.

Luckily when we rolled into Portland, our friends came to the rescue. We took her in to get checked out by the amazing mechanic Mondo. He is the kind of mechanic who will not take advantage of ones knowledge (or lack there-of) of automotive technology.   I am no dummy, but when it comes to cars, it seems like I will fall for anything. If a mechanic tells me that there are little unicorns flying around in the engine poking holes into everything, and that I need a unicorn filter, the next thing I know, I am paying $80 for an oil change.

Mondo is not that guy, he loves to work on cars, and loves seeing cars get used to their full potential on a dirt bag budget.

So he did a bunch of tests until he diagnosed her with needing a rebuilt engine asap.  He estimated she might go another few thousand miles, but in those miles, she would continue to get worse. Her condition was chronic and fatal. Seeing as how she was already eating a quart of oil every 300 miles and was only getting 22 miles to the gallon, it was time to start looking for a new car.

We didn't have to look far or long... Mondo had a Toyota truck that he was willing to sell to us. I took one look at it and said yes- I want it. I've always wanted a truck with a topper! We bought it a few days later after testing it out on a drive up to Seattle. We gave the Honda to Mondo, he promised us he would rock her proudly until she putters out completely – stickers and all - in Portland.

The next day we loaded up our truck, said good bye to good friends and our beloved Honda and headed to mountain bikers heaven, aka Bend Oregon. For three days straight we biked 30 plus miles of amazing single track with our good friend Glenn. Pick your dream ride, and I bet it is here- curvy smooth down-hill, logs, boulders, technical up hill, steep down hill.... you can get all your favorite flavors here. We took one day off to build a bed. Once again, friends came to the rescue! I called up my friend Moe and asked if she had some tools we could borrow. “Come on over! My boyfriend has tons of tools!” After a quick trip to home depot, where I watched Jason mutter equations to himself and run up and down the halls like an indecisive kid in a candy store, we loaded up the truck with $50 worth of wood and screws.

Two hours later, after playing side kick to Jason, we were reloading our belongings under our brand new bed! The next day was the 4th of July- we celebrated our freedom with another amazing ride and an evening session slacklining and practicing acro in the park.  Everything seemed perfect.

But nothing ever quite is....  As we switched over to my first long shift in the drivers seat, we discovered one flaw.  Bench Seats.  I scooted the seat forward to get my feet to reach the pedals, the whole bench had to move forward, so that Jason is squished, knees pressed into the dash.  And he gets cranky without his leg room.

Now all we need is a booster seat for me.


  1. You'll have to tie blocks of wood on the bottom of your feet like the kid from Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom.

  2. I gave you a truck with a topper and you made me take it off!!!??????????

  3. very nice Chelsey and Jason.... safe travels.