This is a sort of new boat delivery (pickup really) travel log. Iím going to ramble on about how my day went, the new boat, and so on. This is long and if youíre not into stories well thatís the short version, go a head and take look at the pictures and have a nice day
I recently traded the Mighty Centurion (Lightning) for a Mighty Enzo. Friday March 14th was pickup day. According to Google the distance from Columbus, Ohio to CBK Water Sports in Kingsport, Tennessee is 392 miles and the one way drive time is about six hours and 42 minutes. My day stared at 5:30 AM and ended well after midnight.
Since I was buying out of state I called the local license bureau and title office to make sure I had everything I needed. I exchanged a few emails with Nate to also make sure I had all the paperwork in order to complete the transaction. Then I mapped my route with Google.
I turned off the blaring alarm clock at 5:30 AM, took a quick military shower. Then I drove down to the Scioto Boat Club and hitched the Mighty Centurion up one last time.
The route that Google selected took a route 33 out of Columbus. Route 33 is diagonal to route 77. The other route would have been 70 east and 77 south down to the junction of 77 and 33. Dawn began to break as I reached Nelsonville. I no longer needed to turn the dome light on to read my Google map. Route 33 might be more direct as the crow flies but is also had a lot of twists and turns and too much map work for one driver. Route 33 ran into and out of towns, tons of speed zones, stoplights, and stop signs.
I didnít have breakfast and so I kept looking for an exit with gas station and fast food. The needle started plummet so I gave up on looking for the combo stop and just went for gas. I really was looking forward to and Egg McMuffin, who eats healthy on a road trip anyway. I ended up settling for a 20 ounce Mountain Dew and a sleeve of powdered doughnuts, yum.
There was a coal barge traveling down the Ohio River as I crossed over it near Ravenswood, West Virginia. The route over the bridge eventually had me at a stop sign over looking the coal barge. I though to myself, hmmmm coal barges, tons of coal Ė ballast really. I wonder what the surfing wake is like behind one of those. From A distance it looked a little frothy, surfing barge wake is probably a good way to earn a fine, and well I was planning to get to CBK by 2-ish so I had to make tracks.
If the two happiest days in a manís life are the days that he bought a boat and the day that he sold a boat then what kind of day is it when you trade one boat in for another? Yep, it was just me and the Mighty Centurion on one last road trip. Just business, buying a selling boats. Anyway just me and the boat. Though my kids are pretty much grown, no stopping for little ones. I though ya, a manís trip, no stopping all the ladies all the time. Thatís about when the Mountain Dew kicked in, just in time for a road side rest stop.
I donít know if itís just me or maybe someone else has noticed this before. West Virginia is kind of hilly. I was making good time and there were no traffic problems but it just seems like WV was up hill all the way. My truck dropped out of OD all the time, well thatís to be expected, right? Well, the truck down shifted to second quite a few times too.
The southern section if I77 is a toll road. Before the first toll stop I remember seeing the sign that said to check brakes, slow down, and that all lanes took Easy Pass. What I missed was the sign that said one lane was Easy Pass only. That was my lane. I pulled up, rolled down my window and noticed no one was in the booth. I heard the gal with a thick southern drawl in the next booth to the left of me yell over to the booth on my right side ďSome people canít readĒ. I have a degree in engineering, an advance degree in engineering, and I spend most of my days writing technical material. I can read - honest. I felt sheepish. So, I put the truck in park, rolled down the right hand window, and leaned way over to hand the booth attendant my $1.50 toll. I did much better on the remaining toll stops.
I reached Bristol around 1:00 PM. I was a little hungry and I happened across the golden arches so I stopped for a burger. At the entrance was a sign that said ďWelcome Race FansĒ. The parking lot was packed and there wasnít any place for a truck and trailer. So I parked up the street and walked over. Many of the counter staff wore NASCAR T-shirts. I asked if there was a race track in the area. The gal looked at me like I was from outer space and said ďYa, BristolĒ. ďOhĒ, I said, after hearing Bristol it did register that Bristol was a big NASCAR track.
There wasnít much more driving before I reached CBK. I met Nate, Pat, Nick, and Josh (Josh Ė right?). The previous owner of my boat was there too, John I think. I really wasnít expecting to see the previous owner. We walked over to the Mighty Enzo, rolled the cover back and gave the boat a look over. Sheís a great looking boat. I turned over the engine, opened the hatches, kicked tiers, and so on. The boat looks practically new. The guys at CBK had cleaned up out some boat bumper rash and other dock rash as well as a few trailer paint dings. I couldnít find any marks, nice job guys. One of the Centurion trailer stickers had to be removed to clean up the paint on the trailer. Nate has a replacement on order for me. Thatís cool. So, big thanks to the guys at CBK. The boat looks great and I canít wait to get her on the water.
I didnít want to spend the night in a hotel so we went in to wrap up the paper work. Thereís a lot less paper work for boats than for cars. After a few signatures and photo copies we were done. Nate ran around the shop and handed me a CBK T-shirt, Centurion T-shirt for my daughter, and some stickers. He didnít have a Centurion T-shirt in my size but said that heíd send me a few. With the paperwork and swag out of the way it was time to hit the road.
Everyone says that you shouldnít trailer with the cover on. Iíve had the Mighty Centurion Light rigged so I can trailer with the cover on. Iíve got a rope and bungee cord system that I like to use. I havenít seen trailer issues with my system. The cover on the Enzo is similar but the boat doesnít sit on the trailer like the Lightning does. I wasnít going to have time to fix up bungee rigging for the Enzo. I donít know why covers donít match trailers very well. I had read about masking the boat hull with tape where the cover might come in contact. So I taped off the hull at the fabric straps. I stopped at the CBK gate to snap a few pictures of the boat and then hit the road.
As I got rolling I thought maybe thereís something wrong with my truck. It seems like sheís spending a lot more time in 3rd than OD than she was on the way down. Thatís definitely a bigger boat
As I headed down the road I saw one of the cover straps vibrating madly. HmmmÖ thatís not good. I finally found a road side rest stop. I took a look and saw that the protective tape had worn away at one strap. I put more tape over the hull, I taped paired strap bands together and I made sticky on the outside tape loops and put the loops between the hull and straps. That worked very well. The tape on the strapped stopped them from vibrating.
I thought that West Virginia was up hill north to south. It seems like no mater what direction you driving through West Virginia, itís up hill. It started to get dark and the rain picked up. Taking snow and ice out of the picture, some of the worst driving conditions are at night in the rain. No letís make that, at night, in the rain, and on unfamiliar roads, thatís it, right? Wait, how about towing a new trailer, at night, in the rain, on unfamiliar roads, and after a long day.
To make up for junk food breakfast and lunch I stopped at a BP-Subways for dinner and gas. Man I stopped at a lot of gas stations to pick up the Mighty Enzo.
I just took it easy, stayed mostly in the right lane, and motored along. I recalled seeing an exit for 33 east and that I was on the junction of 77 and 33. I missed 33W dang it. Well 33W wasnít that great of a route, I was getting tired, and I77 and I70 are both excellent highways, so I just continued on my way to Cambridge and then to Columbus. Funny thing, over Ohio roadways it was hard to notice the difference between pulling the Mighty Centurion and the Mighty Enzo. I was at Cambridge around 10:00 PM and so I figured Iíd be at the boat club by 11:30 and home by midnight. A long day to be sure.
I made the tight corner in to the boat club and stopped in front of the club awning. I pulled out the camera again and took a shot of the Mighty Enzo in front of her new home. As I was walking around to take a picture I heard a hissing sound. Steam maybe. Had the Mighty Enzo been too much for my Chevy Avalanche? No the sound was coming from the boat. Did one of the axels over heat, no they were cool. Over on the right side of the boat I heard the hiss and I started to get that old tire smell. I had a rip in the side wall of one trailer tire. Thereís an old rusted, bent and cut off stub of a fence pipe at the boat club entrance. The trailer must have snagged that pipe when I made the turn in to the club. Thatís a bummer but at least I got home ok and I didnít snag both tires. Iíll have to get a sledge or something to take care of the old post.
Well Iím sure thatís more than most of you wanted to read. The tire has been repaired and the Mighty Enzo is in her new home. I need a matching spare tire rim. Does anyone know what the brand and model are and where to get one?
Lots of stops at gas stations
My bungee trailer straps
The Mighty Enzo
Yes I was at CBK
Worn masking tape
The rig with a better back drop
The Mighty Enzo with a better back drop
There goes $100
The Mighty Enzo at the SBC