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Albuquerque and Santa Rosa night before last. Came out of nowhere. Driving along in I-40 at 75mph and one minute the air is clear then the next minute I see snow flakes. At first just a few but quickly this few turned into many. Then too many. On the road surface I see snow sticking and tracks in the snow.

Of course I'm slowed way down by now and cars zooming by in the fast lane like always. But not for long. A few miles down the road and there are cars in the median and on the side/shoulder of the road. And further east on other side of the freeway came upon stopped traffic. A wrecker had run off the road on a way to a call I guess. Another wrecker pulling the first one out of weeds off the side of freeway. Thankfully no stoppage on the east bound side.

I end up behind a slow moving -- 30mph -- big rig and let it clear a path ahead of my car. Sure my car has new tires, Bridgestones, but of course summer/high performance tires. New though, maybe just around (or over) 1000 miles. And AWD, traction control and PSM. Even so, I could easily break the tires loose with just a dab of the throttle so while the new tires were gripping they had a tenuous hold on the road with snow on the surface.

Managed to snap a pic while driving.

Decided to bid my time and stayed in the slow lane behind the big rig. Got pretty tense at a couple of places when the snow got several inches deep. The car didn't get skittish or act up but I had a death grip on the wheel. Scared about being snowed in I called ahead -- using my cell phone while driving ( afraid to pull off the freeway cause I might not be able to get back on ) and called motel in Santa Rosa to reserve a room.

About 10 miles west of Santa Rosa drove out of the snow and only managed to touch 75mph a briefly a mile or two before my turn off.

Felt sick and stressed and decided to keep the room instead of pressing on. Glad I did cause later came the food poisioning symptoms. Oh my. Rudy's BBQ let me down.

Next day late on way across Texas panhandle and still sick enough to after a stop to forget to turn on the V1. Big mistake. Texas officer pulled me over for doing 80mph in a 70mph zone. Ticket. I asked several times for a warning and was told couldn't be done. Of course had I been in a vehicle with TX plates or been in a pickup truck or had a load of kids in a mini-van I could have run 10 mph over all day long. Right after I was cited and the officer drove away -- crossed back over the median -- and I pull back on the road from the shoulder these and other vehicles whizzing by while I'm tootling along at 70mph in the slow lane.

No biggie. I'll contact court and ask for PBA and plead for mercy and get ticket reduced. BTW, took the officer no time to write the citation. I've had to wait longer for a Happy Meal in a drive-thru. He was back on patrol before I had the citation folded and stored in the glove box.

But the worst was yet to come.

In Topeka got confused and missed an exit for Joplin. The NAV unit was directing me where to go and I made right turn onto a side street -- housing division -- and didn't see the low center island. Ran the car right over the thing. Straddled it. Could hear scraping noises. Horrible.

Started screaming NO NO NO and scanned dash for any warning lights. None came on. Pulled over when I could and checked gages again. Everything looked ok. Got out bright LED flashlight and walked around car looking for any signs of trouble. Tires still inflated. No scuff marks on the rims. Looked under the car and all panels in place and no fluids dripping. Even the low hanging spoiler apparently no worse for the wear.

Gingerly got back in the car and got going again and finally after miles of navigating city streets and I-44 under construction got back on the I-44 toll road and got the car up to speed. No vibration. No pulling. No nothing but what had been there before.

Still I had NAV unit plot a route to Springfield MO (Porsche dealer there), back to Oklahoma City (Porsche dealer there), Wichita KS (Porsche dealer there) and Merriam KS (near KC Mo), and yep Porsche dealer there, just in case.

Decided to stop in Joplin and spend the night instead of pressing on into KC -- would have arrived around 2am had I pressed on. But as soon as I finish this I'm going to check out of the hotel in Joplin and make a guick run up to KC Mo via 71 highway and get car into the service department and have the alignment checked just in case.

All of this and I have yet to even see my folks.

I think I'm about through with road tripping...


Just kidding. Sounds tense, but so does having to turn your head and cough before boarding a plane. The 911 is one tough machine. Isn't there a rally version somewhere? Keep safe.
Marc, take a plane and...
CarreraLicious - Wednesday, 1 December, 2010, at 12:56:59 pm
...rent a car from the airport next time if you need a car while there. Much less drama that way (hopefully), and more time to spend with folks. You drive your Pcars enough during your daily commute already, no?
Marc, I feel your pain about the ticket. If it's any consolation, on my move to California I was ticketed by a Texas State Trooper (94 mph in an 80mph zone, a little faster than you, I know) in the middle of nowhere about 150 miles east of El Paso, and I was driving a car with Texas plates. Then, about two weeks after getting a California license, the State "welcomed" me by giving me a ticket for 40 mph in a 30 mph zone, in a residential street near my house. I think they are out to get us...

Good luck with the rest of your trip.
I hope my luck is better going out to CA in January with the Bullitt. I'm pretty sure I'll go farther south using I-30 and then I 20 after Dallas. I-44 and 40 were OK in the AWD G35 but probably not in the Mustang. I know I'm not imune even on those routes, but they are at lower altitudes.

You always have an adventure. Hope I don't!

BTW pay no attention to those non-road warriors that recommend flying....Yuck!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/01/2010 04:03PM by dennisafrompa. (view changes)
I agree....flying is yuck...
CarreraLicious - Thursday, 2 December, 2010, at 1:15:03 pm
I hate taking flights as much as the next guy, but if his objective is to spend more quality time with his folks, taking the plane is a no-brainer, as he uses up almost the whole vacation week just driving back and forth (even without hitting mule deer and center islands). grinning smiley However, HMMV. ...his mileage may vary.
loaded up car and called Porsche dealer in Merriam KS (near KC Mo). No dice. Service department booked solid until Dec. 8 and I was told no way could I get my car squeezed in.

Called the Springfield, Mo Porsche dealership. Service advisor told me to hold on while he checked. Came back a few moments later and said "sure we can fit you in". So I quickly checked of the hotel and drove as fast as I dared to Springfield.

Told advisor what had happened and that I wanted the alignment checked and the car checked out and I wanted pics of the underbody.

About an hour and a half later advisor came to get me and take me back to the car. Met the tech. He said car looked just fine. A bit of a nick on the inside of the left front wheel but not at all severe. A couple of plastic body panel retaining screws had their heads scraped up a bit and the brace/cross bar just ahead of the engine had some scrape marks but nothing bent or damaged. I had my camera out but there was nothing to photograph.

Alignment out but not very much at all. Just normal out of alignment due to usage. Front toe a bit out (wide?) -- might have been done that way on purpose (I don't have the last alignment records to compare with) cause I complained about the car's steering feel and tech who did previous alignment took car back to the rack and made some adjustments -- and rear toe on one side out just a tiny bit.

Tech brought all settings into specification and after road testing reported car felt and steered just great. Commented in fact on how good the car felt. (Tech at Rector when I had the car aligned after buying it told me the car was one of the straightest 996 cars he's had on the rack.).

And the cost? $160! and change. Service advistor told me the usual 4-wheel alignment charge is $250. However he told me the service department sometimes discounts this to $180. Service department gave me a discount on top of this and well, let me just say I was quite happy with the price.

May have made a mistake though... We got to talking and I mentioned the tire service at the Sacto. dealer and showed him the invoice. He was aghast at the labor charge of $200. Said even for 19" wheels he charges just $100 for mount/balance and for 18" and smaller even less. Said he could beat the tire prices too. Next time I need tires I might just arrange to have a set put on at the Springfield dealership. If I'm out this way why not? Told him not to let those high CA prices give him any bad ideas...

Anyhow, I feel much better about the car. Left the dealership early in the afternoon and drove the 100+ miles to Sedalia and managed to see my parents. Spent the rest of the day visiting with them. Will spend today with them as well, then I have to hit the road to be back at the office Monday. I'm allowing 3 days -- Fri., Sat. and Sun. -- to drive back to Livermore. Going to take it easy and not push it too much.

A bit of light snow forecast for today here. Just light light snow, flurries, with no accumulation expected. Then weather next couple of days looks clear. Sunday I think I'll run into the next Pacific storm on my out of AZ and into CA and north and west towards home.

But rain I can handle.


Good to hear everything was Ok with your car.

Surprised you were able to drive in snow with the summer performance tires, specially with the power of the turbo. I imagine you'd have to have a very soft touch with the gas pedal.

Safe travels on the rest of your trip.
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