Right after our scheduled detour to Galena Bay, we headed off to Castlegar via BC Highway #6 to spend the night there. The road right after New Denver just had a recent scrape and was under construction and at times were in bad, bad shape. We were just cruising along the twisties somewhere in Enterprise Creek about 20 kms from New Denver (the last known place of civilization :-)) when we hit a big pot hole which resembled more of a washout from recent rains in this area. I remember trying to avoid the monster but it was just too laterally wide. All we heard was this big bang as our Porsche 911 took the big hit -- followed by a big hissing sound of air escaping my front left tires.
As I quickly pulled over, I quickly envisioned this lost couple stranded somewhere nowhere in nowhere highway in nowhere wilderness with no visible civilization around, with no Cellular service (we discovered that very quick!), and with no emergency spare tire! Sorry, this 911 do not have any room for a spare tire! Great! I did try filling in the now-limp tire with air - but no luck. Air was escaping from the tire bead right where my rim lip was bent from the force. Great, another setback! Time is now about 2 in the afternoon! By now, I am panicking that we might be spending our night here waiting for help...
Fortunately, just few meters away I discovered this lonely off-grid home tucked behind the trees. Ken was the most warm person one could ever meet as he welcomed us to his home while he seek help for a tow truck using his satellite phone. After several minutes of phoning around, we did find a tow truck in Nakusp about an hour away. Ken made us very comfortable as he showed us around his garden and his property. (@Ken: We are in awe of what you managed to plant! Love your Japanese bamboo!) As I pulled our car back into the side of the highway, we could not be more happier (or comforted?) as motorists stopped by offering their help. Katie from British Columbia Ministry of Transportation who happen to be heading home from work in Nakusp stopped by, offered her help by following up on phone calls, stayed with us until the tow truck came! Another God-sent angel! She even offered us ride if necessary!
Random kindness we get from complete strangers... It was then we realized, we live in Canada!
We had our car towed to Castlegar about an hour away to the nearest tire shop. By now, everybody has gone home for the day. The following day, as the service advisor at Kal Tire gave us the bad news about needing a new tire replacement and that the tire size and brand I had on the Porsche is not a tire they normally carry or stock -- all hopes of getting back home in time suddenly drained away! We stood there outside the shop with nothing better for an action plan but a prayer for a miracle. Think. This is a Friday with a stat holiday Monday because of Canada Day celebrations. That would roughly take us about a week stranded here in Castlegar, if they could even find the tire from any of their outside suppliers! Few minutes later, the advisor came back with gleaming news! He just found one tire sitting in his inventory, oddly must have been ordered by someone at one time but never came to pick it up. It may be not the same tire brand I have (because of tread patterns that might screw up my car's traction control system), it is certainly the right tire for me now to keep us going!
The Lord sometimes work in strange ways!
BTW: The impact of the pot hole, split a 2inch long cut along the bead! It also bent the lip of the rim; I will have the wheel fixed at a later date...
A ton of thank you's to:
- Ken of Enterprise Creek BC
- Katie of BC Ministry of Transportation
- Dustin of North Nakusp Towing, Nakusp BC
- Kal Tire of Castlegar BC