7 hour driving day
2.5 hour defrost
290km – variable quality tarmac road
Morning broke, and we all emerged from our sleeping bags, uncurled from whichever corner of the back we’d managed to wedge ourselves into during the night, and were amazed at the icicles of snowflakes that were dangling from the roof of the Beaut. I should point out that I’m talking about on the inside of the Beaut…
The night had actually been a surprisingly good night’s sleep, although we can conclude that we all snore. Except for the women amongst us, who obviously don’t. Heavy breathing I think it’s called…
At soon as we woke up, the Webasto was switched on – we figured the engine would need all the help it could get this morning! Within 5 minutes, we realised we had a problem. The Webasto wasn’t igniting properly and we had to get out of bed to sort it out. It was quite a low moment!
After checking the usual problems (e.g. had we let it run out of fuel again), and coming up blank, we were running out of ideas – so we just tried to turn it on again. This time however, there was an ominous slushy noise, and a backfire… and we hastily switched it off again. “That slushing noise.. you don’t think our coolant could have frozen do you…?”. “Nah.. don’t be ridiculous, we mixed it to work down to minus 38..!”. Nevertheless, we were suspicious, and a nonchalant check in the radiator confirmed it – slush puppy! At least we knew what the problem was!
After a night in the (comparative) warm, the Coleman was functioning again, so instead of cooking us breakfast, we lit it underneath our coolant pipes to defrost them. Within half an hour, the Webasto was up and running, and we were back in business! The nervous bit was watching the radiator after we switched her on (started first time, on the key, what a babe!), to check that we hadn’t burst any pipes. Fortunately we seemed OK, and after a top up of brake fluid (the replacement seals on the wheel cylinders had completely failed by now), we were on the road again and headed for the finish line!