Late yesterday afternoon I decided to drive to Sequoia National Forest for a day by myself in nature with a camera. The family was cool with it, so I got up at 4:00 AM to begin the almost 4-hour drive up the 5 North over the Tejon Pass. As you can see, this is not a photo of some really, really big trees. This is a photo of my 1999 Excursion Turbo Diesel, overheated on the side of the road, 3/4 of the way up the Tejon Pass, in the middle of the Angeles Crest National Forest.

After the truck cooled down, I took off again and again and again. I was able to go perhaps 3/4 mile at a time before our faithful old Ford would quickly overheat, then I’d wait for it to cool and try again. The closest gas station was only 3 or so miles ahead, near the top of the pass, but it took me close to an hour to inch my way there.

By the time I had finished dumping two full bottles of coolant in, I had been on the road for over 2.5 hours and traveled just 36 miles. I decided to just forge ahead. Just under five miles later, I was on the side of the road again.

I waited for the engine to cool again then decided to turn around. I put two more bottles of coolant in and started back up the Tejon Pass to home. Below is an illustration of how I spent the next four hours trying to get home… one stop after another.

So how was your day? 🙂

If there are multiple photos in this post, EXIF data is for the featured photo only:

  • Aperture: ƒ/22
  • Camera: ILCE-7RM2
  • Taken: 3 July, 2017
  • Focal length: 28mm
  • ISO: 50
  • Shutter speed: 1s


  1. Not the shots you wanted but they’re still great shots! Hope you made it home ok.

  2. Thanks. It was touch and go. Barely made it to the Ford dealer. 🙂

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