Mikey’s Gas & Diesel Shop

Kalispell MT 59903

Like it says on the card. FYI the area code is 406

As you may have read below we lost 5th gear in Truck 2.0 and ended up driving 500 miles in 4th gear. Slow going for a few days. When it happened I called a bunch of shops in Billings and one of them, which was 2-weeks out on repairs, recommended Mikey’s Gas & Diesel Shop. I called Mike and he got the ball rolling on repairs by ordering the parts he needed.

The pesky 5th gear retaining nut. This one is an improvement over the original, but still slipped

I dropped the truck off Thursday morning hoping it was not going to turn into a big week-long project and got lucky. Super lucky. Mike and his crew had it fixed in several hours. And the price was super too!

The back of the tranny where the 5th gear resides. All clean now!

If you have car trouble in Kalispell I can recommend Mikey’s Gas and Diesel Shop

The front of Mikey’s shop

Below is a link to a map, etc. They don’t have a web site:

Bummer

The 5th gear on an NV4500 transmission

We had transmission issues on the Montana section of the trip. About 30 miles east of Billings we lost 5th gear. After that we were limited to 55 mph in 4th gear. We were the slow-poke in the right lane. Grrrr

5th gear is a know issue with the transmission in Truck 2.0 and I was hoping I would get away with not having it break. Nope

Limping into Kalispell seemed to be the best option. The wait time to get repairs in Billings was 2-weeks and there was no space in the local campgrounds. Grrrr

I’m outa here!

So long 105º – Hello frosty windshield!

First night out of the desert

We left Fruita before the sun came up and it was still 74ºF. Cruised along the motorway to the mountains east of Toponas CO where the high was 72ºF and thunder storms lit up the afternoon sky. The morning brought a frozen windshield! All hail the glorious rain and cold temps! We saw a yearling moose who was sniffing around the camper – very fun!

Great camp spot

From our first mountain camp we headed to the mountains east of Laramie WY. We camped at 8100 feet so the days were a cool 70-something with 40-something at night. No need for the A/C, but we were running the furnace at night

Great riding around here!

Ride all the rides! We camped near some Mtn bike trails and managed to ride a few of them. It’s nice to have new trails and totally different riding conditions. My local friend and I put on about 50 miles of trail rides during the week. YaY!

Early morning walk on the rocks

The boiz got to go out and sniff the local sniffs, climb the local rocks, and chase after the local squirrels

The ferocious Puma prowls the rocks near the house

We have been enjoying some fine cool temperatures and rain for the past week. That’s about to change! Dammit! The reason for going north was to escape the heat, I can check out but I can never leave. The hotness I planned to escape has moved to where I’m going. Dammit again!

Dammit!

Early Hotness!

It’s over a hundred about a month too soon! I planned to get out of here before this happened! Oops … We were suppose to be in Montana before it went triple-digits in Fruita. Maybe next time

The cacti bloom was a delight this year

Size matters. Although the little guy is the Alpha. I like seeing them together (awwww)

The shepherd watches over his flock of mice

Yellow Cat

Since I rode about 4,000 miles in the desert last year there are not a lot of places left to explore around here. One of the last is the area between Arches N.P. and I-70 in Utah. There is an old mine out there named Yellow Cat and a highway off ramp by that name that leads to it. I always wondered …

The ADV 450 at the old load-out

I spent a day out there on some surprisingly smooth dirt roads. Thanks Grand County Utah! I don’t know what they were mining out here but if I was to guess I’d say uranium

I think it used to be a bus?

Near the end of the day the clutch slave on the Huskie ADV 450 failed – AGAIN! This is the second time it failed and left me without a clutch. The original one lasted two years (40 miles!!); only got 18 months out of the second one. I ordered a rebuild kit this time and I think I figured out why the factory ones fail. Maybe I avoided that pit-fall when I rebuilt it

That dirt track is a gas pipeline

I rode the gas-line road out to the border of Arches N.P. There is a big parking spot out there and I suspect there are some kewl canyon hikes to be had from there. From the rim I could see tall trees in the canyons and a bunch of slick-rock

North of Arches N.P. with the LaSal’s in the background

The mining roads out here predate the Park. The Park installed fencing to keep the wheels out, but feet and hooves are welcome

Arch on BLM land

There a a ton of roads out here which are not on any maps I have. Most of them are gas-line roads and end at a well-head. One of the intersections had a sign that says “arch” and pointed toward this delightful place

Like it said on the sign: Arch
Looking toward the LaSal’s
Desert Blooms

Freeze Warning and Fire Watch

Climate Change is Real

We had an ice storm the other day

The weather has gone to poop around here. High winds, fire watches, and freeze warnings – Oh My!

My new ride on the Western Rim Trail

I rode the Western Rim last year on the Huskie Adventure 450 and I suspected it would be more fun on an ebike – I was right again!

The Western Rim Trail on a cloudy day

There are a TON of people camped out in the desert now. I saw a cute little guard-bull on the Rabbit Valley road

I saw this dude standing guard on the Rabbit Valley road
Slick Rock! This is on Mel’s loop. It’s the only good part of that ride. The rest of it is deep sand 😦

Mel’s loop is a moto trail and I’ve ridden it a couple times on bicycles. The part of Utah it’s in is mostly deep sand. It’s less busy than Moab or Fruita, but there are still peeps camped out there

Same Kibble, Fresh Bowl

~ Jef Mallett

My new ride!

I got my new bike a couple weeks ago. I’m liking the 27.5 x 2.8 tires on this bike. Rolls over a lot of things my 26 x 2.3’s can’t tackle. The motor makes it way more fun too!

Easter Sunday on the Wrangler trail

The Easter Bunny was out hiding eggs on the trails and I found one! YaY!

Mikel and I rode the Ribbon Trail again

Polly, Kai, and Mikel swung thru Fruita last weekend and we re-rode the Ribbon Trail. I remembered all the kewl parts and forgot all the parts where we had to hike-a-bike. Took the wrong steed, have to remember to take a 25-pound bike next time

Check out the “scoops” over the roof vents. That’ll blow the fart smell out of the bathroom

Sometimes I see the strangest things in this park. Vent covers on backwards is a first though. Later the owner went up and changed them around so they didn’t get ripped off

Sign of the times in Rangley Colorado

I took a little drive up to Rangely on a rainy/ snowy day last week. Cute little town built around ranching and the oil patch. Seems the oil boom let go and then COVID kicked the legs off the stool. The True Value and the Family Dollar are still open. The Italian restaurant was busy at lunch-time, but a lot of main street is vacant store-front

He’s sound asleep 🙂

Cats are weird

Home Field Advantage

The boiz and I made it over the big hill between storms. We got to Fruita a couple weeks before the big storm shut Denver down. It’s been cold here so not many peeps coming to ride the rides. Park is nice and quiet, mmmm …

Got the mini and diggin’ some sewer line

We started right in on the big projects. Sewer line, new intake for the irrigation pumps, new fence. It’s like a big remodel here. Champagne taste – beer budget!

The spare tire has been too close to the new 4″ exhaust for awhile now. So I built a heat shield

I’ve had some time to make improvements to my stuff too. Built a heat shield for the spare tire/ exhaust pipe and got a new block heater. Between that and a trip to the Vet I spent my $1400 stimulus payment. I hope you feel stimulated now!

Mistakes were Made

Sunrise a little north of T or C New Mexico

The views on the way to Colorado were nice. We did have to beat into the wind the entire way though

Mistakes were made. The temperature has been varying between -5º and 5º f all weekend in Denver. It’s 56º in Oracle, AZ

I keep making the mistake of coming to Colorado in the winter. I need to smarten up some

North to Colorado

North is typically associated with snow and cold, but this season snow and cold came south to Oracle AZ and found me! I have been roundly snowed on every year since I started this epic road-trip

About 3″ of the white stuff fell from the sky
Plus the wind is blowing 25 mph

After the snow had a chance to melt the boiz and I struck out into the wind (about 30 mph!) toward New Mexico. We got as far as Hatch where we found a vacant lot near the memorial park. Lots of brightly colored flowers and do-dads adorned many of the resting places. At night the solar-power lights came on and the park looked like houses lit up with fancy lights for Christmas

Camped near the memorial park in Hatch NM

The next day was a short trip up-valley to about 25 miles north of Truth or Consequences NM. Met and old rancher who said he’d been around here 75 years. He told me there have been a lot of people moving here from CA and WA. Getting away from fires and rain he said

North of T or C New Mexico. Plenty of brush for everyone

Found a place to let the boiz out