Getting up at stupid o clock was bad enough, then we found the car was frozen solid, inside & out. Even the locks were frozen. That was probably my fault for washing the car on Saturday. Eventually we got in, scraped the ice from the inside and loaded up. Pam closed her door and found it wouldn't fully latch so we set off with the door on the safety in the hope that some heat would improve things. Thankfully, after about a mile with a freezing draft coming in, we managed to get the door fully shut.
The trip across the A66 to the Reghed Discovery Centre was incident free apart from the fact that the engine temperature dropped by about 20 degrees from normal and there was little heat coming though at all.
By the time we arrived we were quite cold and never really felt warm till we got home again. In fact we got a lot colder as you will find out later. We signed on and had our coffee & biscuits and a chat to some of the other entrants before going back out to get ready for the start. Friends, Don & Eileen hadn't decorated their Blaze GT so we put some of ours on before they came out.
The others had obviously decided that going up there was not a good idea and disappeared. We eventually found our way out after asking a passer by for directions to the next village we had to find. Great! we thought, we're on our way again.
Oh! No! It was not to be. After a couple of miles there was a great increase in exhaust note and a loud scraping sound from underneath us. Yes, the exhaust had come apart. All the hammering it got earlier had taken its toll. I thought at first that it had seperated at a joint but investigation revealed that the front pipe had pulled out of the front box and the support bracket was broken. It was a picturesque place to stop!
Time to call the RAC. No mobile signal! Found a phone box. Remember them? The lines were busy. I waited ages on hold, luckily it was a freephone number, before giving up and going for a coffee.
Refreshed and a bit warmer, it was back to the phone box. This time it was in use. 20 freezing minutes later I got to the phone. The lines were still busy and it was about 10 minutes before my call was answered. We would have a patrol man with us anytime in the next two hours. With no mobile phone we had no way of getting time updates so had no option but to wait in the car. Already chilled from the wait by the phone box the marginally warmer car didn't do much for our comfort and we got colder & colder. I did try to run the engine to get some heat but without the car moving it began to fill with exhaust fumes so I switched it off.
Eventually, help arrived and a temporary fix was made. We headed for the coffee shop for warmth and refreshment before setting off for home. The car was still noisy but at least the exhaust was joined up and not hitting the ground. We growled our way to the A66 for the homeward journey and hit the heaviest traffic I've seen on that road. By the time we got close to home we were both cold, tired and very fed up so we hit the takeaway and put the kettle on as soon as we got in. Unloading the car was postponed to Monday morning.
Here's some of the video we managed to get before the camera fell off its perch.