Turning MacGyver’s Nights Into Days

Spokane, Washington

“Look!” MacGyver announced enthusiastically as he climbed into the driver seat in El Paso, Texas. “We have another chip in the windshield. You know what that means.”

Yes, I do.

Turning MacGyver's Nights Into Days

This was our view near Jasper, Alberta in late April. It’s on the way to a land with (almost) a midnight sun. We’ll be just up (down?) the road from the Arctic Circle, Latitude 60 Degrees. Vancouver, Canada is on the 49th parallel.

It’s time to find a load north, way far north, because we will have to replace the windshield before our next Landstar Department of Transport (DOT) inspection due at the end of July. The roads in the Lower 48 states are so dilapidated there is so much flying bits of rock and debris that a windshield seems to last less than two years. And shocks? They should be good for 100,000 miles, especially when we drive 58 mph, but we replaced the last ones at 87,000 miles.

Sunrise near the Arctic Circle, where we’re heading, is at 0400 local time and sunset is at 2300, which means MacGyver’s night drives will be day drives. The mystery we want to solve is, will it get completely dark, or is summer northern dark, southern dusk?

I’ve put on a double supply of Huggies baby wipes because once we pass Fort MacMurrary, Alberta there will be no truck stops for showers.

I will try to post a report and photos on Facebook from our delivery location across the Boreal Forest into the northern tundra of Canada. Alas no Northern Lights, not because they’re not out there, but because the sky needs to be fairly dark to see them. We’re expecting almost no dark.


4 thoughts on “Turning MacGyver’s Nights Into Days

  1. The Arctic trip is going to be really cool.I'm not following you, though, with the segue from a cracked windshield to having to push north before your July DOT inspection.Are you seeking an elves workshop that replaces windshields? Does Rudolph have an offseason profession?Is that a repair better done in Canada, at whatever parallel? Is it all about the miles?Hello? And enjoy the drive.


  2. I didn't mean for it to be an inside reference. The roads in the north are notorious for creating rock chips. If it's not the gravel on the road in construction zone, then it's rocks and debris flying from passing trucks. Highway 2 to Hay River is two lanes, and the so-called shoulder is gravel. When a truck is oncoming we hug the white line and the trucks can kick up gravel.So we don't want to go north in Canada or in Alaska with a pristeen, new windshield. That's begging for rock chips.The idea is go when the windshield needs to be replaced soon, so if we get another chip, it doesn't matter.Our current windshield was replaced in December 2011 and not six months later, we caught a rock on I-15 going north to Salt Lake City. I wanted to cry. I was shaking my fist at the passing truck carrying gravel. Him doing 70 on that road, me doing 58.Since then we've gotten two more. We're still DOT legal, the chips are smaller than a dime, but we know we will replace the windshield in July before the next inspection.


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