So we got to the cabin around 3 or 3:30 p.m. We decided to go to the cabin first and unload before we went to the grocery stores to pick up the last minute perishables.
It took us a little longer than we anticipated to get to the cabin. I thought it was going to only be about an hour but it was over 100 miles so it took a bit longer and the last 5 miles or so were definitely the worst. I mean I thought my parents lived off the beaten path but this was seriously little more than a path.
I had emailed the owner to ask if she thought we could get down the driveway because she had said it was pretty steep and had a sharp curve in it but she said we shouldn’t have a problem. I should have taken into account that she drives an SUV. I drive a VW Jetta.
When you drive off the highway literally less than two miles you are travelling on a gravel road with hair pin turns and the further you go, the scarier the turns get and remember I’m from Walton’s Mountain so if they scared me!
The “main” road (if you can call it main) up to the cabin was gravel and since it had rained a fair amount in the last couple of weeks it was pretty rutted in places but we pushed on. When we pulled into the driveway I can honestly say I started getting heart palpitations. Hubby was driving and I was really relieved NOT to be driving down that driveway. I told him to put it in low gear and to literally ride the brake. I don’t think we went more than 3 to 5 m.p.h. down the entire driveway. And when said there was a sharp turn she was NOT kidding! It was literally one of those kiss your butt turns where the front half of the car is facing and one way and the back end is practically facing the same direction! You kind of double back on yourself.
We got unloaded and decided we were going to hurry and run to the store before it got dark because we didn’t want to be stuck coming down the driveway after dark. Not only because of the gravel and
ruts but we didn’t want to tangle with a bear even if we were in a car!
We got in the car and hubby was driving. We go about 30 yards up the driveway (did I mention this driveway was WAY long? AND steep??) and the tires started spinning. We hadn’t even made it to the sharp turn (now Uphill) yet! Hubby backed back down a few feet to get a better start and we got about 6 inches further than before and the front tires started spinning. I told him to stop because I was starting to smell rubber! I got out to try to direct him. TRY is the operative word!
Several times he backed up and tried again only to get to that blasted rut and the wheels would start spinning again. We tried the left side and then the right side to no avail. We finally put it in park and roamed around the driveway for loose rocks and small limbs, anything that might give us a little traction. NOTHING. I was beginning to think we were gonna be stuck here for eternity which wouldn’t be bad except eventually we’d need food and hubby does have to be back at work in a few days. I was seriously beginning to be afraid that we were going to slide right off the side of the mountain and trust me… it was a LONG way down!
Finally out of sheer frustration and exasperation hubby told me to get behind the wheel and he was going to push from the back of the car to see if that would help. It didn’t. I was more afraid then that I’d end of sliding back over him down the gravel and who’d have ever thought it was an accident? After several attempts yielded no results I backed almost all the way down the driveway to where it wasn’t quite so steep and got a good rolling start and just pretty much gunned it and stayed as far right to the edge of the drive as I dared without driving off the cliff!
Hurray!!! We made it! It was a little hairy and a lot scarey but we made it to the sharp curve. I stopped over the top to pick hubby up but we still had over half the driveway yet to go. He did tell me he was impressed with my mad driving skills. He said both front tires were airborne when I gunned it over that big rut but there was NO WAY I was going to stop unless the car just started spinning to a stop!
I started up the hill just past the sharp curve and it started spinning again. I vowed to myself right there that if I ever come back up here again I’m renting a four wheel drive SUV or a big ole’ honkin’ pick ‘em up truck! One of those with the HUGE tires! What do they call them? Monster trucks? Yep, that’s what you need for up here. Hubby was like “I was secretly hoping for snow while we’re up here but I think I changed my mind”. DUH! Yeah! I don’t think that would be a good thing unless you seriously wanted to be stranded.
I backed it back down to the curve and just gave it slow and steady gas and PRAYED all the way up the driveway. Hubby was telling me I could slow down but I was afraid it would start sliding again. We made it to the store and I stayed out in the car with Chorizo counting down the minutes since the sun was supposed to set at 5:32 and it was about 5:15 and we were at least a 10 minute drive from the cabin. He walked out about 5:25 and I flew back to that gravel road.
We seriously considered parking at the top of the drive (about a half a mile) and walking all the way to the cabin but I didn’t want to get caught out in the middle of the woods in bear country after dark carrying groceries. I drove down to the curve and the really bad rut and parked there after turning it around. I’m just hoping that we can make it back out tomorrow. We’ll let you know if we make it back out!