Saturday, August 22, 2015

I Survived a Mining Tour and Didn't Even Get a Lousy T-Shirt

I'm in Salt Lake City, waiting for my flight back to Florida. My trip to Nevada was very productive. Also a lesson in "what can go wrong will go wrong."

Here's the craziest thing about the trip ...

Day 1: We went to look at what other companies were doing on the Carlin Trend. This involved driving up some very rough roads on a big-ass mountain. As the Nissan Armada I was riding in headed back down the mountain, we had a tire blow out. Just "whoosh!" So, we coasted to a stop on a flattish spot on the road, then we all got to take turns figuring out how to find/work the jack and the spare tire. The bolts on the wheel were hot enough to give me blisters on my fingers. But eventually, we limped back to the "Seen Better Days" Hotel & Casino, as I affectionately call it.

So that was Day 1.

On Day 2, we walked out of the hotel to find ANOTHER tire had gone flat on the Armada. So, I squeezed into the way back of the Ford Expedition, a much sturdier vehicle ... so we thought.

Then took this hell-bent-for-leather ride up the narrowest, rockiest, steepest of mountain roads. This mountain was even bigger than the mountain we went up on the first day. Our driver/host/guide announced when we passed the 9,000-foot level, and we just kept climbing as our ears popped.

Just as we finally reached the tippy-top of the mountain, the cooling system of the Expedition gave up with a shrieking hiss, as the radiator spewed steam in all directions.

Uh-oh. The radiator spews its death-gasp on a mountain-top
So, we had lunch (we brought some AMAZING burritos from Elko) and waited for the radiator to cool down. It should have been an incredible view, but there are horrific forest fires raging to both the west and the east. So, we were smogged in. 
Our view was obscured by smoke, but still impressive
Still, we got a better understanding for how the project we were visiting fit in to the Carlin Trend (a prolific gold belt in Nevada) and past production in the area.

One of the analysts on the trip was a car buff and he actually nursed the Expedition back to health. So we went back down the mountain. We went even faster down those narrow goat-paths this time. Yee-haw!

Finally, we got to the flatter parts of the land. But on the way out, a local hunter stopped us and pointed out that one of the front tires of the Expedition had gone flat. Yep, our third flat on the trip!
Well, dang it! That makes three flats on one trip!
Now for the good news: The hunters, who are apparently the nicest people on Earth, changed the tire for us. 

So what does this have to do with the price of gold? Not much. But it just shows how even well-planned trips can be detoured by unexpected events.

More on my trip and what I found in another post, probably next week. I have to see if the video I shot worked out. It was rather windy and my laptop was balanced precariously.

1 comment:

  1. I wouldn't invest in any company that doesn't know how to drive up a hill in a pickup truck without turning it into a Wagnerian tragedy, personally.