The Great Beater Challenge 2017 – Day Two Part Two – Bridges, Pipes and Star Trek

All good things must come to an end and while the dinosaur hunting was fun it was time to move on. We first headed west then south. In this episode we drive over many bridge, check out an enormous pipe and play Star Trek.

In nearby Rosedale we came across a cache of old vehicles.

A Super Beetle wearing some modern shoes.

Not sure what this little industrial machine is but it is interesting looking.

A few older vehicles as well.

Nearby is one of the most unique fences around made of bicycles.

After Rosedale we headed south to the ghost town of Wayne. In a six kilometer (3.7 miles) stretch there are eleven bridges. This is actually the most bridge spans in a small area in the Guinness Book of World Records. My apologies about the quality of the photos in this segment as our windshield was quite dirty.

Ten out of the eleven of these bridges are not wide enough to allow simultaneous traffic in both directions. One has to watch for oncoming traffic and take turns.

Not all the bridges are large and grand.

Not much to see in Wayne for a saloon and a few near by farms. A few classic cars are hanging around including a Kaiser.

A reasonably short section of gravel followed including this uphill section.

Next up with is the unincorporated community of Dalum which was founded by a Danish group. The Bethlehem Lutheran Church of Dalum dominates the area.

The community center is the other larger building. Dalum is strongly agricultural community.

With a hot dry summer harvest time is already underway.

We briefly had a short jaunt on Highway 1 east of Calgary. Along the way we spotted the better looking twin (in front next to the SUV) to our car. Even the same color. I wonder what he thought of our modifications.

Next up was great pipe of Arrowhead.

This is a section from an irrigation pipe. Irrigation is essential to farming in generally dry southern Alberta. Engineers build a massive siphon to bring water across West Arrow Creek valley. The first siphon was built in 1936 with a second, parallel one being added in 1951. A concrete siphon replaced these wooden ones in 1991 this section is reminder to the earlier engineering efforts.

We continued south and came across another interesting bridge.

Flat farm land dominates the area.

Nearing Vulcan, Alberta a poor bird was unable to dodge our hood addition.

In Vulcan there is a tourist center dedicated to Star Trek.

Inside you can dress up in costume and hang out with cardboard replica Star Trek characters.

Gift shop

Scale model

I finally caught up with Rod’s Civic we drove the remaining 45 minutes of so. A very familiar section with mostly flat prairie landscapes and farms.

The familiar Lethbridge Viaduct means we are back to Lethbridge. Constructed between 1907 and 1909 this massive steel trestle is the largest of its kind in the world.

We got together a restaurant to receive our final scores and swap stories.

At the awards dinner we (and everyone else) scored a completion trophy. Amazingly for the second year in a row all beaters completed the journey of almost a thousand kilometers. Underneath you can see the letter I had previously received from Honda. Our Civic is subject to the Takata airbag recall.

With a larger group of cars and our frankly fairly boring car selection we did not receive any trophies this year but we had a great time again. This year we managed an 8th place ranking, mostly on the strength of our spotting of dinosaur statues.

The final overall scores were:

1. Svensky & Hutchensson- 2650 pts
2. Mater- 2497 pts
3. Pacemaker- 2291 pts
4. Gumby- 2174 pts
5. Pontiwreck- 2104 pts
6. Krystal-Beth- 1798 pts
7. Burbzilla- 1690 pts
8. Hype R- 1540 pts
9. Pro Dart- 1530 pts
10. SS Arthritis- 1420 pts
11. Tyrannosaurus Wreck- 1415 pts
12. C.H.I.C.A.- 1380 pts
13. Team S.M.R.T.- 1255 pts
14. Hot Fuzz- 1160 pts
15. Van Lyons Rallye Team- 1150 pts
16. Not Fast Not Furious- 1079 pts
17. Einfahrt Notfahrt- 905 pts
18. Banana Boat- 900 pts
19. Campbell Racing- 885 pts
20. Rice Pudding- 790 pts
21. Grandma’s Locked in the Trunk- 550 pts
22. Bongos- 140 pts??
23. Wild Thing- -8905 pts

Overall Winner- Svensky & Hutchensson
Best Theme/Costumes- Pontiwreck
Most Spectacular Failure- Tyrannosaurus Wreck
Marginally Above Average Effort Award- Wild Thing
Best Under $500- Burbzilla
Best Titanic Picture- Campbell Racing
Best Rendition of Queen- Farmtrucks (all 3 teams)


It was late when we got home so I delayed the gross job of dead bird removal from the hood scoop. I was no unhappy to find this hawk beat me to it.

These piles of feathers were left on my front lawn.

Before the Civic goes back to looking relatively normal I had the air bag recall to get sorted. There was also a key interlock recall for them to inspect. I figured I should keep on all the challenge customization intact until this work was complete. So I took the Honda in for service in all its wooden wing glory. I parked it right at the front by the entrance. I made a big deal of it and how its been in the family since new when dropped off.

When I picked it up they parked it way down at the very end hidden by a used Odyssey. Parked nose out instead of tail out.

I popped in to retrieve the keys the guy at the counter says “what color is your car?”

“Black” I reply.

“The one with the … errr … wing?” he asks “… what’s up with that?”

Apparently the service techs had a good laugh and it brightened their Tuesday after a long weekend. I got a couple thumbs up and a few what the heck looks on the way back to work. Next up the Civic will receive a scrapyard replacement trunk and the original hood back (replacements do not fit well due to other accident damage). Oh and I fixed the passenger door. Carefully prying at the fender with a long, flat head screwdriver got it sorted.


The whole series:

Vehicle Selection and Preparation

The Teams

Day One Part One: Tarmac, Gravel, Tarmac and more Gravel

Day One Part Two: Out into the Prairie

Day Two Part One: Dinosaur Hunting

Day Two Part Two – Bridges, Pipes and Star Trek