Sunday, October 20, 2013

Not Our Typical Lake Powell Trip

If you know us at all you know we live for water skiing and Lake Powell. In fact, I have been to Lake Powell 5 times since Ty and I met and 1 time to Lake of the Ozarks for even more water skiing.

But Lake Powell this year was "choppy" one! And I don't mean just the water. Don't get me wrong, it is still the hot sun and warm water for relaxing, but not at all what we had anticipated. We had everything planned out to go with a few friends and camp "up canyon". Hansen canyon or Good Hope Bay were looking good for some excellent water skiing. Ty feels like that's really the only way to get the "True Lake Powell Experience" and since I had never truly experienced Lake Powell I was really excited.

Since Ty doesn't usually get off work until Wednesday, Ty had planned to take 1 day off and head out Tuesday evening and sleep in Orem and drive to the Lake Wednesday morning and then carry our gear up river. We weren't able to get a house boat but knew that we could "beach camp" with the equipment we had... since we've been beach camping at Lone Rock for years!! But somehow, we ended up a day ahead of ourselves and never got caught up! 

So a few set backs. About a week before we left, we got the tires rotated and aligned in the truck and we heard a funny noise on the way home. After Ty checked it out he decided to replace the brake pads which were in ok shape but not great. He quickly realized that the brakes calipers were seized, so more money and time spent replacing those.

The Sunday before we were going to leave ty planned to drive to my parent's house to borrow their boat. Due to all of the issues we had been having he brought along a lot of his tools. First of all he woke up later than he had planned since I set his alarm wrong (In my defense he hadn't gotten very much sleep the last few days trying to fix the brakes, so I was just trying to help!) Well he only got to Burley before he pulled off on the first exit he could find and checked his wheels. Something still wasn't right. He pulled into the nearest AutoZone parking lot. After jacking up the tire and taking it off, the wheel bearing crumbled in his hand. (This had happened once previously on the other side about 2.5 years ago when Ty's Dad had to rescue us from the side of the road near Sweetzer Pass. He ended up spending 3 hours replacing the entire wheel bearing with just the tools he had and no ramps. He of course did have a tire jack which he used to do the whole thing. So needless to say it was too late to drive to Shelley and back before he had to be at work, despite the fact that he was exhausted he came back home.  We would get the boat on our way to Lake Powell on Tuesday.

We got everything ready and packed most of it Monday night. Early Tuesday I got up and packed several of the last items like coolers, etc.  Ty got off a little early and came home to help. Well in all the craziness, our favorite runaway dog, Summer, took off without us knowing it. When we were ready to leave she was no where to be found. Ty looked for her for an hour before he decided to set out some food and water in case she came back while we were gone. He loaded up Scratch and Sniff and we were finally on our way ~2.5 hours behind our friends.

Since Ty hadn't slept I drove to my parents house, but Ty couldn't sleep because he said I was driving all over the road. (I drive his truck all the time, but it really was being squirrely!). After stopping at rest stop we realized that 2 of our rubbermaid containers were gone. Neither of us noticed them sliding off! Sigh! Luckily they just had sand toys for Kate and Josie and some dry groceries, so not irreplaceable.

We finally made it to Shelley and got the boat all ready to go. Ty drove for a bit, but it didn't take him long to realize it was acting funny! (Notice a theme here?) But after just a little more air in the tire, it was back to normal. We traded off driving here and there and of course stopped for potty breaks for the girls and dogs and food.  We also got a call about Summer and our generous neighbors went to pick her up and bring her back home. Stupid Dog!

About 5 pm we pulled into Orem, where Ty's parents live and he took a little nap, while I went to get some new toys and snacks at the store. When I came back Ty was out for the count. So we called our friends (who had made it down to Lake Powell around 2pm) and let them know we wouldn't be coming until the morning. Since they were going up river to find a camping place, we figured one of the only thing they didn't have was a regulation toilet, but a small porta-potty got them only a warning from the ranger.

We went to bed early and were on the road around 5am. But just our luck coming around a corner in the pitch black morning Ty saw sparks coming from the boat trailer. We found a pull out and realized the wheel bearing on boat was shot. 

Since it was nearly seized we dropped the boat trailer and headed back into Spanish Fork and munched on some doughnuts while we waited until the RV store opened at 9. 

After a few more parts and tools, we were able to get it fixed. By we, I mean Ty, since Josie, Kate and I were little help! ;)

Four hours later we were back on the road and barely hanging in there emotionally.  Just outside of Bullfrog Marina we felt a wobbling and after stopping twice to check everything, realized it must just be the road. We pulled in and launched the boat. Our friends met us there and Ty followed Paul in the boat while I drove the truck and trailer down the dirt road with another friend, Kevin to the shoreline "temporary" camping site. At a sandy area in trail I wasn't able to switch into 4 wheel drive and so Kevin got out and tried to see if he could lock/unlock the hubs to see if that would help. As he was backing me up just a bit and waving me forward he stopped me. The hitch pin for the boat trailer was gone and all that was holding it was the chains. We still have no idea when we lost the hitch pin, but swear it had to be there when we loaded the boat on the steep marina boat launch or we would have lost it there! 

BUT WE HAD FINALLY MADE IT TO LAKE POWELL! We arrive about 24 hours after our friends, but we were there! 

We all quickly changed into our swimming suits and relaxed just a bit in the water, before Ty went to check out the trailer. 
 McKenzie's black eye from her brother Preston while tubing!

In all the craziness the others decided they didn't want to go up canyon and we were far too wiped out to care at that point (but regret it still!) Paul loved going to the marina and went 9 times in 2 days! That is one of the pleasure of being up canyon, a little solitude and incredible skiing opportunities, but no need for the marina.

Since we were camped right next to Bullfrog Bay the skiing was poor at best and only at dawn. We did enjoy several days of boating, exploring and soaking!

I'll let the picture below speak for themselves (for the most part).

 Beautiful beach area in Hansen Canyon

 Lost Eden Canyon

A few friend's left the day after we got down there and The Johansen family stayed until Saturday morning and the last of our friends, Paul and Paula and Kay left bright and early Sunday morning. But after a few hours we got some new neighbors. The Foley family set up camp nearby. Josie loved having a little girl her age to play with again. They convinced us to join them in fishing and Josie and Ty, and I both caught a fish!

Just a dip in the water here and there to keep from overheating, we did our best to keep the Sabbath. We read and played in the sand and snacked, but the boat didn't even move. 

Matt and Stephanie, our new friends sat in the boat with us and chatted for a while we sipped our drinks. It was a lot of fun. 

Monday morning we got all packed up and offered to take the Foley's out for a boat ride. Sarah, their daughter was in love with the water ski trainer. She literally did it for at least 15 minutes. We each got several turns after that since the water wasn't too bad. We ended up being out on the water for at least 2 hours, but it was great!

We took the scenic route home via Loa and Castledale. It was so pretty! We ate at a great pizza place called Big Mama's Pizza and Deli. We stopped that night in Orem and drove the rest of the way back Tuesday morning. But to be quite honest the ride back was pleasantly uneventful! :)

Well a trip to remember, and definitely a good time for the most part, but we should have saved the $1200 that we spent on all the upheavals (we got as an insurance claim earlier in the summer) and gone 4 wheeling with Ty's parents in Bryce Canyon instead. Sigh! I hate to say it, but I'm not sure we'll go next year... :(


  1. Don't quit going. You will remember THAT trip forever. Just look at the pictures and tell me that it was not a great experience "upheavals" and all!

  2. We Had a ton of fun but the cost and the poor water just left us wondering if we should take 2014 off. Unless some one that LOVES to ski wants to go other than Melissa or I.