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Natchez Trace Parkway Excitement


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He was a hansome rascal as he stood there, in the middle of the North bound lane, tail held high. Twin silver streaks flowing back towards the flagging tail. He was sending a clear message to us in the few brief seconds that we had. The message was Look out ! You are violating my territory !

The journey up the Natchez Trace Parkway had been tranquil and beautiful, until we met up with Mister Skunk.

Then things changed dramaticly !

We had swung up onto the Trace after a great visit with the SCUBARX"s in Tupelo Mississippi. The lengthening shadows of the fading day brought out many Deer to feed along the roadside. We enjoyed their beauty, but were wary of those Deer that were closer to the road.

Traffic was light as we turned on the headlights and began to chat excitedly about our upcoming visit to Hohenwald for a few upgrades to our Ollie. An hour or more had passed with occasional glimpses of various wildlife keeping the excitement level bit elevated. As we backed from Steve and Tali's driveway, we had to cut sharply uphill. That may have had a bearing on the events that were about to unravel on the Natchez Trace Parkway.

It flashed through my mind as I saw the Skunk in the road. Trying to sleep that night and working on Ollie with that pungent odor of Skunk saturating everything might well prove to be impossible. I didn't hesitate. I jerked the Jeep and Ollie to the right and quickly straightened it back up again, with the curb side tires on the grass. We were traveling at a little over 55 MPH.

Now I know that there are those that would say "sorry skunk", and stay in a nice safe straight line on the asphalt. Having great confidence in the handling of our tow package, we didn't hesitate for even one second. In classic and true form our Ollie continued to trail magnificenly, as always, straightening up and tracking well, with two wheels on the grass and two on the asphalt.

But that sharp backing turn while exiting the driveway, had came back to bite me in the butt ! The sharp movement disloged the breakaway brake cable pin, and the Ollie's brakes immediately locked completely up !

At that point steering is pretty much out of the question. To maintain stability and controll, the steering wheel needed to stay straight. Luckily there were no roadside signs there to be mowed down.

We came to a squalling stop, down the road aways, from the thouroughly aggitated Skunk. A quick check revealed that the tire that was on the grass had no damage. The asphalt side tire was flat spotted down past the tread, but not to the cord. We were soon underway again at a more sedate speed, after reconnecting the breakaway cable pin.

We were just a few short miles away from a good nights rest and a upgrade to the eight ply tires.

The Lesson to be learned from this episode ? We are pretty faithful to check off the items on our pre departure check list. The breakaway cable is one of those items, but after a sharp turn during exiting a parked position, maybe another quick look ?

I would rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth 08' Oliver Legacy Elite HULL NUMBER 0003(sold)

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Wow, Mountainborn :o


I'm glad you & Butcherknife came through that experience with only a flat spot on your tire to contend with. Pepe-le-Pew was very fortunate you were behind the wheel.


Don't know what would be worse, your harrowing "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" or doing the skunk smack-down and having to camp in one very odiferous Ollie!


What brand 8-ply tires will you be going with?

Pete & "Bosker".    TV -  '18 F150 Super-cab Fx4; RV  - "The Wonder Egg";   '08 Elite, Hull Number 014.


Travel blog of 1st 10 years' wanderings - http://www.peteandthewonderegg.blogspot.com


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Goodyear Marathons. After hearing the tire controversy rage on and on in other forums, I have decided that the problem is that some folks are just plain old overloading a tire that is too small for the trailer it's on already.

Geeze, I hope that I don't spark a tire wild fire on these forums with that opinion. Those Khumos that are so highly valued, on other forums, are a bit exotic, hard to find, and overpriced. There is a Goodyear dealer in nearly every county of every state in the USA.

I posted on other forums asking about anyone having experience with the Goodyear Marathon 15" 8 ply tire and response was so poor that I believe most other Fiberglass owners havn't tried them.

He, he, you know me, Pete, a tire report is lurking somewhere down the road !

I would rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth 08' Oliver Legacy Elite HULL NUMBER 0003(sold)

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Hi Ya'll,

Glad to hear your lockup turned out safely :D ! Been there and done that in another brand of trailer. :cry:

Make sure you DATE CHECK the Marathons. I agree with you on other brands' tire problems but the Kumhos are GREAT tires (if you can find them) but I don't think they currently have a 15" 8 ply available in U.S.

Chuck 8-)

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Hey, Mountainborn,

Glad to hear that your excitement only ended in needing new tires! I don't understand one thing, though: If you dislodged the breakaway brake cable pin when you pulled out of the SCUBARX's driveway, why didn't the Oliver's brakes activate immediately at that point, rather than some time later, while you were on the parkway? Don't the brakes activate as soon as the pin is pulled?




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Steve, I have been thinking about that also. For all of the same reasons. I think that the cable must have pulled the pin right to the threshold of coming out, then the lurch of avoiding the skunk, jarred the pin the remainder of the way out, setting up the brakes. I am thinking that my breakaway cable might need a small lengthening, a couple of inches, or so.

He, he, it was exciting there for a bit. During the squalling brake lock up, the Prodigy controller flashed a code. After stopping, I realized that it was the disconnect code.

That Tekonsha prodigy Brake controller has worked flawlesly since being installed. We have had the old style brake controller, that hooked into a brake line, and several electronic brake controllers over the years, with various trailer/tow vehicles, but the prodigy is the best of the lot. It makes me wonder how much better the new Tekonsha controller might be. We opted for the prodigy because of it's proven performance for other RV'ers over time, instead of the newest model that Tekonsha has out now.

I would rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth 08' Oliver Legacy Elite HULL NUMBER 0003(sold)

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