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Cross-Country Trip: The 86 GL Turbo Coupe Made it!

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Well the GL TurboCoupe made it all the way from Pacific Ocean to Atlantic coast last week, nearly 4000 miles, some of it off road, including a +10,000ft dirt/gravel pass in NM near Abuquerque. The only mishap was a torn CV boot (perhaps from the offroading), which was discovered in Texas the next day, and repaired with a quickboot kit in a motel parking lot that night and early the next morning. Thanks to USMB member CalebZ for his immense help with that by phone. Also thanks to James Hogan in Virginia for rapping with us as we went up highway 81 in the Blue Ridge mountains.


Pics can be seen here: http://photos.yahoo.com/tv3wrx Select the "cross country" album.


The young guy in the pics is my 16 year old son, who lives in VA and is now using the car. I just flew back to CA yesterday.




Mechanical: Averaged around 24 mpg, but much much less when in the hills or offroad. Used 1/2 qt oil the entire trip, along with a couple ounces of coolant. Lost a wheel weight on front left, got a bit bouncy. Did the whole trip without AC. 108 degrees in Nevada, 102 in Arkansas. Holy dehydration.


Day by Day Highlights (for anyone who is bored and looking for something to read):


1. CA to Zion, UT: Hot hot hot hot in the desert. Temp gauge rose slightly over half. but no more than that. Avg speed around 80 or 85 mph. Stopped in Baker (near Death Valley), and Vegas. Camped out at Zion Natl Park. Perfect night. Breathtaking spot.


2. Zion to Bryce Canyon SP, to Shiprock NM. Big long day of driving. Started by touring around Zion, then went to Bryce. Found the best gravel road I've ever been on, perfect rounded gravel, like driving on snow. Car stayed sideways for around 3 hours straight. Taught the kid how to drift. Found other good dirt roads near park. Cruised on down into AZ, stopped for lunch and to check out pawn shops, then hit Lake Powell area. More dirt roading. After, drove straight thru to Shiprock NM and four corners. Almost ran out of gas 20 mi from there. Could not find motel, so slept in back of coupe at Navaho Nation regional hospital parking lot. Long long day.


3. Went out to shiprock monument, drove the dirt road on south approach to get there, and other roads ringing it. Climbed it all morning. Headed off to Farmington to see an 82 wagon we saw in the paper, but it was an auto. Great shape though. Headed down to Albuquerqe, got big thunderstorms along the way. At Cuba, decided to take rt 125 pass offroad toward Los Alamos and Santa Fe. Perfect packed clay road for around 40 miles, big fun. Started to rain, and the clay turns to the most slippery substance known to man. Had fun on it at first, then close calls made us slow down a bit. OK a lot. Got into Santa Fe, and down to Alb. via 10,0000 Sandia dirt pass. Rocky and tough but fun. Hit Albu. Bunked at the "Deluxe Inn", $24. Had a Sambuca. Mmmmm.


4. Waffle house breakfast, then washed red clay off car in a u-wash-it joint. Off to Tucumcari on 40. CV boot was gone but we did not yet know this. Discovered it while at filling station at Texas border. Called CalebZ, he helped us with a plan for getting a Quickboot kit in Amarillo. Got it, and drove on to Clinton, OK. Hot humid place, no breeze. Ate, went to rt 66 museum, then got under car and cut off boot. Cleaned joint with carb cleaner and went to bed.


5. At dawn repacked joint, and found that new boot was too small. Got an exchange in Clinton, and installed new boot. Went on perfectly. On the road later than planned but ok. Flat hot drive

to Forest city AR, camped in state park. Became mosquito food. Got poison oak looking for lost hatchet after hatchet-throwing contest. (The kid beat me, dang-it.) Still have pock marks on my feet!


6. Out early, drove thru Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville. Hit rains after VA border in evening. Called James Hogan (USMB) as we passed thru. Too messy to set up camp, Slept in back of coupe in church parking lot just off Blue Ridge pkwy near Roanoke. Heavy rains and lightning storms......cool.


7. Up late, pretty tired at this point. Pastor pulls into church (Sunday!) wondering what we are doing there, gives puzzled looks. Oh well. Drive off for BR parkway, take it up to I-64, stopping at stream to play. Son kicked my rump roast in a rock-skip contest, (skip rock in creek and hit target on other side). We hit I64, and head down thru Charlottesville in to Richmond, then arrive in Williamsburg. One day after arrival, guy at gas station offers me cash for the car. "There ain't a SPEC 'o rust on at thang!" I politely decline.


We did it! Great fun, great adventure. The little Roo that could. Now I need a new project. 84 wagon maybe? Hatch? I dunno.:drunk:

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I wanna do it again already. Maybe that will have to be a goal for the next Scoob project. By the way I just talked to the kid....he's WAXING the car today for a second time.....I guess that's a good sign that he'll take care of it right? I hope it is anyway....

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