Part 2: Westbound & Down
Last month we rattled, limped, and boogied my ’73 CJ-5 across America (“CA to PA in a CJ”). The Jeep, christened Lemon Pie for its color, reliability, and ability to get me to fine deserts every day, was built the same month and year I was born. I drug it home from a junkyard, spent a few weeks slinging wrenches at it, and then headed across the country last summer for a road trip to remember. By the end of the first day I was pushing it down a dirt road in the middle of the Arizona desert with a dead battery. But after a few days on the road it was running tops, save a few oil and exhaust leaks. The Jeep had no working gauges, but the modern technology of my smart phone gave me GPS, a speedometer, and access to websites for daily updates. It was a really odd having more technology in my hand than in my 4x4.
After a week of high-temp driving on backroads across the great USA (a sprayer jug filled with water was the low-buck A/C of choice), I arrived in Pennsylvania, my home state, and then attended some four-wheeling events. Next I visited the good folks at Quadratec who helped make the trip happen and then cruised to the sandy Atlantic coast of Long Beach Island, New Jersey, a childhood family vacation destination of mine. I could go no farther; it was time to turn west and see if Lemon Pie would make it home.