Calloway

It is snowing again. We are again living in the exact kind of winter we expected when we moved to the “mountains”. Something happened after/during Flood Monner that changed our weather for the good.

Of course, not everything about a snowy, wet winter is good. Like driving home in the snow! A couple months ago, I wrote what I called, “The First of Three Stories”. Well, here is the second story.

It is about driving home in the snow.

During a late December snowstorm, Elaine was a little worried that the conditions were getting a little bad, so she called Ivy and I to tell us we might want to head home. She suggested we stop for some groceries and get home before the storm got any worse.

At the grocery store, Ivy and I ran into a neighbor picking up a couple last minute things before heading home. The three of us were exchanging pleasantries, when the neighbor announced “We should get going, Calloway is going to be bad!”

The dreaded Calloway in the snow; Calloway is short for Calloway Hill. I’m not sure why this hill is named Calloway Hill, but I do know what it means. It means the road will gain over 600′ vertically in less than a mile. The road is a series of nasty curves in a canyon with plenty of places to slide into rocks or off a couple cliffs. Calloway can be quite treacherous during the winter,

I probably should mention that cell phones lose service in the canyon that is Calloway. This will become important to the story later.

Our neighbor finished her shopping before Ivy and I and headed for home and CALLOWAY. Ivy and I followed about 20 minutes behind.

The company owned truck that I was driving had me slightly concerned about the drive home, as it is/was a two-wheel drive truck. Two-wheel drive pickup trucks are not the greatest choice of vehicles for Colorado winters, however, they are economical (for a pickup) . With new tires and weight in the pickup bed they are capable of getting around in the snow, but not my first choice.

I have near to new tires and had about 500 pounds of hay in the bed, so I didn’t anticipate a problem.

Ivy and I stated up Calloway. Almost immediately we came up on an abandoned car in the middle of the road. Obviously the driver started up the hill and gave up from the slick conditions of the road. I drove around the car. Another 100 yds and another car is stranded. This one is still occupied. I drove around it, It is my neighbor, the one from the grocery store. I can’t leave her there. I found a safe place to park and walked down the hill to see if she needed help.

She thanked me for stopping and told me she had phoned her husband. He was coming with a four-wheel drive vehicle to pull her up the hill. I walked back to my pickup truck to go home.

Now that I have given up my momentum up the hill my truck will not go up the hill. “No problem, I will back up a little and get a run at it.” Nope, I started to slide off the road and into the ditch. I tried forward again. Nope, backward again, Nope. I finally got the truck moving forward. The sad thing is the truck was headed up the hill at a 45 degree angle, but we were moving up the hill. Until we came upon another abandoned car in the middle of the road. Normally this would not be a problem, just pick a side and go around the vehicle. But my truck is headed up the hill at 45 degrees. I don’t have room to get around the abandoned vehicle. I have to stop. I now longer have ANY momentum.