Still alive; just barely - Fiberglass RV

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Old 06-14-2019, 09:28 AM   #1
Senior Member
Name: Mitzi
Trailer: LilSnoozy 12/01/16, Tug 2012 Dodge Citadel
Posts: 508
Still alive; just barely

Current temps in KOA Boone NC were highs in 60s last few days lows 50s but the staff were talking about it possibly getting into 40s by last night.

I had determined that this year we would drive the Blue Ridge Parkway north, entering at Cherokee NC. Air was damp, visibility poor driving thru the clouds along the mountainsides. At Travelors Rest SC and Smoky Mountains NP nights were comfortable but days getting too long. The Boone NC KOA has the highest elevation of all KOAs in the east and we were going to stay there.

I was glancing at the temp gauge now and then but we were having no problems pulling the LilSnoozy- that is, until the water pump broke. Fortunately we were at a place where a dirt track wound up the mountainside to some sort of tower (NC 450 I think) with a wide place maybe big enough for 6 cars on the uphill (southbound) part of the parkway. Northbound shoulder maybe 2 wide or so. We got off with the car nose pointing uphill. Did not disconnect the snoozy as we thought a tow truck might want us to move around to make it to hook up the van. We had no cellphone reception at all but some hikers had cellular connection and let us call USAA on their phone. Pump mishap @2:30 PM. Tow did not arrive till 7 pm.
At 7 PM tow arrived and started looking over our rig. I went into snoozy to grab dh's wallet and my purse suddenly heard sh shouting "what are you doing" a large bang Snoozy tongue went down and started rolling bassakward toward the parkway. The downhill cliffside was almost perpendicular and I'm standing on the axle area increasing inertia &velocity and the roadside shoulder is NOT guardrailed and the door is at the back. I saw myself and snoozy launching over the cliffside-would've been another Challenger on impact. Suddenly veered to the side and nose wheel and one rear tire sank into the soft mud. GFB and the tow driver had grabbed the tongue and managed to pull it almost sideways
I was shaking. Dh hurt his shoulder saving me. That tow driver never checked to see if the wheels were chocked or where all the people were before disconnecting it.
He towed us to the dealership in Ashville with our van on the flatbed and camper hitched to his towing ball. And yes, we had to move the van about 5 feet for him to be able to load it.We could have done that, THEN disconnected the trailer after chocking. After the van was fixed I routed us on developed highways to Boone and spent a few days mentally recuperating.
So I am still alive. Thank you God, Dh and even the tow driver who put me into danger initially.

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Old 06-14-2019, 12:47 PM   #2
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widgetwizard's Avatar
Name: Jim
Trailer: Bigfoot
Posts: 404
Well that does sound rather too exciting - but glad it worked out OK.

We are on the parkway now - southbound. We just entered NC. Its glorious
As was Shenandoah with all those bears.

Hope you finish you trip with a little less adventure!

Looks like we are just up the road from you - on the Parkway for $32/night full hookup.

Retired from Orbital Machine Works.
Where is Jim now?
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Old 06-14-2019, 03:12 PM   #3
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Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Posts: 379
Glad to hear tragedy was averted. It’s a spooky world out there these days with many unqualified and uncaring people doing jobs that can have a major effect on others. Sometimes it just amounts to economic calamity but often safety and welfare are at hand. When I have a negative experience I show my displeasure and let management know my problem. Positive experiences get return business and praise.
Did you see the viral video of the idiot using a floor mop to clean tables in a Burger King? They’ve been off my list for many years. Enough said.
Iowa Dave
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Old 06-14-2019, 06:26 PM   #4
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Name: Paul
Trailer: '04 Scamp 19D, TV:Tacoma 4.0L 4door, SB
Posts: 1,544
Wow, what an adventure. Glad all worked out well in the end.
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Old Yesterday, 11:47 AM   #5
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Name: Wendy
Trailer: 14 Casita 17 SD
Posts: 136
O-M-G!! I’m horrified to even think about what you both went through!

But how did you know the water pump broke? I’m in the Colorado mountains, so I’m afraid to go uphill now. I watch the engine temp like a hawk, but it never changes. Is that how you knew? The temp went to HOT? How terrifying! You have my sympathy. Thanks for any insights.

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Old Yesterday, 12:45 PM   #6
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Name: Herb-in-FL
Trailer: looking to buy
Posts: 15
I love travelling on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
If you are anywhere near Asheville, I highly recommend
the Lake Powhatan Campground, which is part of a
National Forest and is right outside of Asheville.

It does have full hookups slots in addition
to simpler sites, and it has clean and updated shower
and bathroom facilities. Call to see if they have space.
It is also adjacent to the North Carolina botanical garden.

The Blue Ridge is beautiful, indeed.
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Old Yesterday, 08:15 PM   #7
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Posts: 606
Originally Posted by WendyW View Post
O-M-G!! Im horrified to even think about what you both went through!

But how did you know the water pump broke? Im in the Colorado mountains, so Im afraid to go uphill now. I watch the engine temp like a hawk, but it never changes. Is that how you knew? The temp went to HOT? How terrifying! You have my sympathy. Thanks for any insights.

Water pumps just go bad. The way you know is they start making a rattling noise sometimes and sometimes they just blow a hole them. The noise is usually the bearings in it. We recently had to replace one and it never ever got hot but water started pouring out of it. Vehicle never towed a trailer since we've had it. Over heating is usually a radiator problem not a water pump problem. We've had to replace more than one and most of the time there is no warning. Sometimes just real hot weather or steep uphill will cause overheating. Just watch your temp gauge and if it gets hot pull over until it cools down. We travel the mountains in Colorado all the time since we live here. Once in a while I see the temp go up some on the mountain passes but as soon as we level out or go down hill it cools off. Just don't let the temp get up to the extremely high area. A little is normal on hot days in the mountains.

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