The Great Beater Challenge 2018: Day 2, Part 1

Day One (Part 1 and Part 2) saw the Pontiac perform admirably considering it had just been revived for street duty a few days earlier. For the second day we needed to do a little work before leaving and given it was Sunday and the stores were not open yet we had a little time for a bonus route as well as exploration before leaving for the day.

Rod and I got up early in the morning and let the others sleep in a bit while we drove the optional Panorama road. It is a curvy mountain road with many, many switch backs up to a ski resort. The Civic seemed more suited for this duty so we took it.

Once at the top of the hill we walked around the resort area.

A suspension bridge leads to the lower ski lift. The area remains popular with hikers in the summer.

There are plenty of other summer outdoor activities are on offer as well.

One of the scavenger hunt items was to play mini-golf, bowling or drive go-carts. Unfortunately it was too early for them to be open …

but Rod had an apple and a snow-brush in his car.

Coming back down the mountain we figured we had some time before the driver’s meeting at 9:30am before noticing a few other team’s vehicles driving the opposite direction. It turns out the meeting was at 9:00am and we had missed it. We came across the Ford/Jeep hybrid near a river and later learned they were panning for gold. Now that is dedication to one’s costume!

We still had a bit of time to kill before the stores opened and as luck would have it we came across a cache of old vehicles. This Canadian market Fargo 300 was missing its grill but looked solid otherwise.

Behind the Fargo was a pair of old trucks, another Fargo Power Wagon and a GMC 960.

The Fargo pickup truck had a desirable step side box but looked a lot worse for wear probably from its time as a plow truck.

It seems to be the fate of a lot of older heavy duty trucks to be turned into signs. This International perhaps hauled logs in an earlier life.

According to the door it started life as a firetruck. The sign says:


Windemere is a nearby town.

Some of the fire fighting apparatus still remains on the truck.

The impressive spiderweb indicates it has been a long time since someone has occupied the cab.

This Ford van looked to be in very nice condition and is utilized by a local organic business.

Similarly this 60s Ford Mustang was in fine shape as well.

I think this might be a 1931 Buick with a non-standard grill. Any ideas?

Less roadworthy is this classic Chevrolet van with a very Eighties paint job and slot mag wheels.

Another classic Pontiac.


A Canadian market Mercury pickup truck.

Once Canadian Tire opened we found that they did not carry any brake bleeding kits but they did have aquarium tubing. I bought two sizes so we would not have to track back. That combined with an old bottle it would work to bleed the brakes. After we left we noticed several other teams buying parts and/or supplies.

My mother had lent us the use of her cabin for the night so the brakes were re-bleed on the gravel driveway. We did get a few bubbles out but as mentioned in the previous entry this may not have been the root issue. Regardless the brakes felt at least better. We also replaced the radiator cap which seemed to stop the coolant leaks from yesterday. Feeling confident and wanting to continue the ugly t-shirt theme I wore my very white classic Lada t-shirt for the second day. My apologies for the photo since as a middle age man I have no idea how to take a decent selfie.

Before leaving town we checked the Home of a Thousand Faces in Radium. The eccentric artist that lives within uses a chainsaw to create wooden sculptures. Since parking brake is so poor I left the car in first gear with the engine off while I was taking this photo.  We noticed that the Pontiac slowly inching its way down the modest hill as it was overcoming the engine compression. The engine might be a little tired.

As we set off I forgot my sunglasses on the roof of the car and they were promptly run over by the next vehicle by before Rod could rescue them.

We headed north up the valley towards Golden, British Columbia. There are farms, ranches and golf courses between the mountains (again hidden by forest fire smoke).

We got sporadic rain through out the day but luckily not enough to cause issue for our wiper-blade-less car.

I suspect at this point we were well behind the other teams. After what seemed like a long stretch we reached Golden.

Here we stopped for gas, food and a few scavenger hunt items. I managed to collect three dragoon flies as well as a wasp on the grill.

The car burped a little coolant (sorry Golden) as we likely over filled the radiator a bit but the good news was we were no longer leaking coolant from around the radiator neck and cap. Some water splashed on the spill meant we would not harm any local animals.

This van would have fit right in with our group.

Interesting paint job technique on display here. They obviously masked off the dealership sticker to preserve it but painted right over the Vandura model call out badges.

Perhaps their enthusiasm wavered as they came around to the rear?

I initially thought this rocket shaped structure was a fire-pit or BBQ but appeared to be serving as a giant ash tray.

We caught up to the RV teams in Golden during our fuel stop.

One of our scavenger hunt items was to find something golden in Golden. After finding a Mr T. poster with all his jewelry on display I thought I was set but we came across something even better.

A Zimmer Golden Spirit, one of fifteen hundred produced, based off a stretched Ford Mustang platform.

After grabbing a bite to eat I fired up the Pontiac to leave but the starter failed to disengage after the engine caught. I turned it off and tried again but was then faced with a unresponsive starter motor. So there we were sitting half way out of our parking spot in a busy fast food parking lot hundreds of kilometers from home. I had brought a hammer along just in case. Would some persuasive tapping get the starter (and us) going again?


The whole Great Beater Challenge 2018 series

The Teams

Day 1 Part 1

Day 1 Part 2

Day 2 Part 1

Day 2 Part 2