The requisite car trouble

The roads on Andros were tough! Even the “highway” spanning the island north-to-south was dirt, and while the graters were doing their best to keep ahead of the erosion following each deluge, many of the secondary roads leading to our sites required a sturdy truck. Luckily this Yukon had been brought to the Navy base on the island some years ago and purchased by our landlord. Somehow it had over 200k miles on it! I’ve a feeling it covered most of those miles somewhere other than the 50-mile long North Andros. We rented it for the week and it performed admirably on the island’s potholes, nearly pond-sized puddles, and overgrown embankments. Truck

Of course this wouldn’t be a field trip without some kind of car troubles. We got ours out of the way on day 1. While the car put up with a lot, this massive stick jutting out along one of the roads was the end of our back tire.

Tire with stick
I’ve never seen such a catastrophic flat!

Luckily (and a little surprisingly) the vehicle was equipped with a spare and full tire-changing kit.

Spare Tire

The light faded fast, but we got the spare on with the help of a few headlamps. Of course, the spare was nearly flat with a slow leak, and we were pretty far off the beaten track. We limped back to the highway and stopped at the first convenience store we could find to ask about an air compressor. Even more luckily, there was a quarter-operated compressor only a few miles away. By the time we were there we really were practically rolling on the rims – it took two 75 cent sessions to get the tire looking approximately full again.

We never did get a replacement spare from the landlord, but luckily we didn’t need another. Aside from its insatiable appetite for gas, the Yukon held up great for the rest of the week. There’s a lot to be said for getting the equipment failures out of the way at the beginning of the trip.

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