When I was twenty-five years old I went home to Minnesota from Alaska, where I was working, for the Christmas holiday. While home, I purchased a new chocolate brown Toyota Corolla hatchback car with a stick shift and all-weather radial tires. I had a month off work which was perfect timing for me to drive my new car back to Alaska.
The trip went great as I traveled across North Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and Washington. When I attempted to pass through customs into Canada I was asked to park my car and meet an agent inside the border station. The Border Agent I met with wanted assurance I understood that traveling the Alcan highway, which was unpaved at the time, was treacherous, the weather could be unpredictable and traveling alone was not safe. I assured the agent I would be fine, showed him a cashier’s check to demonstrate I had funds should they become necessary, and went on my way.
At twenty-five you think of yourself as extremely capable. You believe with every fiber of your being that everything will work out as you want because really, there is no other acceptable option. That was my mind-set as I drove away from the Canadian Border.
I stayed in Prince George, BC my first night in Canada. I had no problem finding a room and felt quite safe after unloading everything from my car. On the second day I started driving reasonably early as I wanted to make Fort Nelson by evening, which was 820 kms up the road.
The further north I traveled the more snow packed the roads became. Eventually the snow-pack became ice-pack with snow drifts alongside the road that rose higher than the big eighteen wheelers.
Late the second morning it started to snow leaving just enough of a dusting to make the ice-packed roads slick as glass. As I started to make a slight left turn to stay on the Alcan Hwy I felt my little car with the strong all-weather radial tires start to slide. The car took on a life of its own, slipping and sliding sideways down the road, gaining momentum until the car was spinning like a top whirling around and around until it caught a piece of a snow bank, made one last turn and dove ass backward into the ditch.
I sat in the driver’s seat of my Toyota hatchback with all-weather radial tires and wondered what the… The car was buried up to the side windows. There was no way I would be able to open the doors. I could roll down the driver’s side window, which I did and immediately regretted my enthusiasm to feel fresh air as snow rolled in through the open space and onto my lap.
I rested my head against the steering wheel taking stock of what items I could use for survival. Then, I heard the clearly recognizable down-shifting of a big-rig. I lifted my head to look out my windshield and there stopped directly in front of my little car was a semi-truck with two occupants. I know I was smiling as I watched the two male occupants jump down from the cab and climb through thigh-high snow to get to my car. The one on my side leaned in the open window, winked and with a crooked smile said, “We have a plan.” I almost cried! Thank God they had a plan!
The truckers pulled my car out of the ditch, cleared it for continued drivability and followed me into Fort Nelson. Once in Fort Nelson the men made me follow them to the auto parts store. They helped me purchase the right size chains for my tires. They also put out a call to other truckers to keep an eye out for a chocolate colored Toyota hatchback car just in case I might need a hand further up the road. How great is mankind!
I was twenty-five, invincible and unafraid of anything or anyone. That is, until my little Toyota with the all-weather radial tires went ass backwards into a ditch along the Alcan Highway in the middle of winter. That was and still is the scariest moment of my life. To be alone in winter, unprepared, ass-backwards in a ditch 0n the Alcan Hwy is a precarious situation to be in today much less oh those many years ago.
Did the experience influence my travels from that day forward? Of course not! I was twenty-five. The incident was forgotten until you asked me to think and write about my scariest moment.
Again, thank you for hosting this stop on the tour.
About the Author:
Find Charlotte online at:
Web site: www.CharlotteStout.com
Charly’s life was simple and uncomplicated, just like she wanted it. Or so she thought! One chance encounter with a devilishly handsome stranger in her local coffee shop would turn her world, and her heart, upside down. She would be thrown into a realm of privilege and romance, and more than just a little danger.
How will she handle the dark gorgeous man who has inserted himself into her domain? When danger threatens those she loves, will she have the strength of heart and spirit to do whatever it takes to save them? Share Charly’s adventures as she navigates through the quickly changing landscape that has become her life.