Thursday, 15 December 2011
We next day we discussed long and hard whether to go on or not- the wather didn't look bad, Alex insisted he was feeling much better and we managed to get the snow chains on so we went for it. I think I'm still glad we did although my unfit body would still hold that to question. We got through the previous drift easily- Alex had waked on a way last night and said that there was nothing that bad after that he could see. Another bend or two from where he'd walked to and we ran into another drift- you've got to run at them hard to have a good chance of getting through but this also means that we managed to beach the poor TLC good and proper in snow that went over the running board so. There was so much snow under the body that the wheels were suspended too far above the tarmac for even thr snowchains to take effect. The next half hour was fun- I enjoy digging and relished the exercise. The next hour after that I grsdually got bored and cold. It involved a lot of sitting on the ground in (previously) waterproof trousers so I could get right under the car, scraping and digging away at the snow, varying my position so different bits of my body took it in turns to go numb although there was nothing I could do to stop my my arms and shoulders getting tired. The las half hour was frankly a real pain in the neck. Alex did take turns but I mainly monopolised the job. In the end I had to clear ALL the snow from under the 5m long car plus a good way back on all the sides so that it didn't fall back under whenever the wheels were tried. We got out- there was never any question that we wouldn't just of how much damn snow we would have to clear. We had provisions, stove, heating, sleeping bags e.t.c., we'd be fine even if we had to dig back half the damn road but I'm glad to say it didn't come to that. With one chain (the other came off although whether due to breakage or inexperienced fitting we haven't yet checked), using both of the blessed waffle boards, my shovelling and Alex's skilled driving we were off back down the way we had come by early afternoon. The alternative valleys we passed through were snow free and very beautiful so we didn't feel too hard done by and we found an easy enough place to park up for the night but we knoew we'd have to press on the next day to make up for the lost time.