Smart is the brand name of a little golf cart like car offered by DaimlerChrysler AG in Europe. On first setting eyes on this little toy you may wonder how it would hold up in a frontal crash with a concrete barrier! Well, wonder no more (the little tyke in the video below was doing 70mph before it was forced to stop in under one second!)
There is a rumor that they are coming to the USA in 2006? Might not be a bad idea as they get up to 70mpg and are not as fragile as you might think. I wonder how your teeth will look after a wreck like this. Me thinks they may fall out of your mouth, cartoon like, in little shards and make a broken glass sound as they hit the floor? More info from MSNBC and another article from edmunds
Update – Sept 2006 – A sighting!
While walking El pooch o in my neighborhood one evening I came across a Smart parked on a busy street. It appeared to be owned by a dealer as a glossy flyer was stuck in the window. Until you see a Smart in the flesh you don’t realize how bloody small it is and also how really cute and stylish it is. As far as the US goes I don’t really know, we’re all use to huge cars and even the entry level cars (Honda civic and ) are mid sized compared to Europe. There does seem to be more of the so called “pregnant roller skate” type of vehicles on the roads lately (Toyota Yaris, Suzuki Aero etc.) so I think people are gradually moving to smaller vehicles as they realize the days of $1.50 per gallon gas prices are over.
So Jiah and I went down to the screening of some of last years jewels at the Outlook Hotel near the old Perkins off 28th st.. Oh boy! The setting was far from ideal with the deep voiced horsy sounding barmaid complaining about not being able to watch the pussy football game on the TVs. The sound levels varied between “jump from your seats to turn the din down” to “turn up your hearing aid to maximum” so you can hear the inaudible hiss. Apart from the less than idea surroundings I noted the following:
1) Sound sound sound and more sound. Shitty picture with shitty sound made me look out of bar the window so it’s imperative to get great sound.
2) Eyes – guy with sunglassed didn’t work and the other guy with a wig next to him eye’s weren’t visible either.
3) Slow beginnings for these kind of film fests. don’t work at all. Got to start off quick and end up with a real ending. EG. the one about the gift, long car drive as well as the one with the 2 minute credits at the start! Also the one with the people sitting at the table and drinking, what the fuck were they saying as the sound was so bad and sitting round a table – god, watching paint dry would of been more fun!
Spoke to the guys from the hotel room skit and they said it was hard to plan as they wanted to use the rock at the hotel and couldn’t cos it was in darkness when they came by to shoot. Perhaps we’ll get a showing of the top 10 going to get the creative juices flowing.
We decided to take a little overnight jaunt up to Heart Lake which is situated about 800ft below the continental divide in the James Peak Wilderness Area. We started at the east side of the Moffet Tunnel which is located about 4 mile west of the town of Rollinsville which is just off the Peak to Peak Highway. The South Boulder Creek Trail follows the South Boulder Creek all the way up to Heart lake so it was a relatively easy 4 mile climb in nice cloudy 70F weather. The pups had fun and managed to find some nice mud holes. We had a good laugh at them as they emerged from the mud with their newly acquired black mud booties -very sexy! There were quite a few people on the trail but most were heading for the closer Crater Lake. We made it to Heart lake in about 3 hours and proceeded to scout out the area for a secluded camp site.
Thabo had gone missing some 10 minutes before this and I just assumed he was digging or chasing something and that he knew where we were. Well it turned out that he didnt know we were at the lake (because of the loud noise of the river he probably didnt hear our calls) and made a b-line back to the car! I realize this when asking some hikers who were behind us on the tail if they had seen a little red wolf dog. So off I ran at high speed down the 2000 odd feet of elevation back to the car and it seems that everyone on the trail had seen him come whizzing past them, sans owner and wondered where the hell he was going!
I found him in the crowded parking lot looking a little lost. He was happy to see me I suppose and was probably wondering where the hell we were! So off we went jogging back up the friggin trail. The folks who were down hiking were quite amused to see us heading back up! First dog, then some time later, owner tearing down the trail, now dog with owner jogging back up the trail – what in gods name ! It also started to rain but I told myself it was nice to be out in the woods with my boy and I that there was food and water at camp, something that, in my rush to find Thabo, I had failed to bring with me.
I managed to make it back to camp by 3pm and collapsed into my sleeping bag in the tent that Aimee had pitched in my absence. She was glad to see us as I hadnt told her that I was heading to the car to get hound. I had a mega nap till about 8pm then we ate and I hung the bear bag and read my book till about 11pm. Thabo wanted to sleep in the tent with daddy and as usual he pushed me to one side of my therma rest so it wasnt the most comfortable of nights sleep.
In the morning we hiked up to the top of the divide Mr. GPS told me it was 11900ft so we had nice views from the top but gray skies to the west of us shorted the divide excursion. The dogs also found two nice snow banks to roll around on. We broke camp at around 1130am and made it back to the car at 130pm.
Summary: Nice hike and its a pretty easy jaunt to the divide from the Moffat Tunnel. Would be nice to of stayed out longer and done a loop up onto the divide then down the Forest Lakes Trail. Plenty of spots to camp a few miles some easy week day camping perhaps?
Gear Report: I need a pillow inflatable one me thinks. New pack is nice but tent has to go on outside cos when i put it inside there was no room at the inn.
On Friday July 15th Aimee, I and the pups set off for a little weekend getaway to The Flat Tops Wilderness Area – the 2nd largest wilderness area in Colorado. It’s a large area who‚Äôs center is located above Glenwood Springs. It was about a four hour drive or so and the final 17 miles were a rutted dirt road with particularly sharp and nasty loose stones covering it. It was one of these stones I theorized that broke a piece off my plastic gas tank protector under the car and also loosened or split a little gas tank breather hose around the same area.
I realized something was amiss when we stopped to look at a roadside map and heard a strange goose like noise coming from the gas tank. Upon closer inspection I smelt gasoline and noticed a leaking gas breather hose near the fuel pump. Anyway, seeing as this is a friggin trip report and not an Audi related item I will just say that we stopped some time later and decided that there was not much we could and to avert the imminent fiery inferno Aimee was assigned to man the mini fire extinguisher and when the flames appeared she was instructed to toss it to me and then to evacuate the pups from the back seat while I would attempt to tame the fire! Needless to say we eventually forgot about the impending danger and nothing ended up happening – thank Allah – but it did add a little excitement to the final part of the ride to the trail head.
Now on to the rest of the trip ‚Äì got to the trail head at 6pm I seem to remember and made our way up towards the Devils Causeway ‚Äì lots of bugs, this was unfortunately going to be the theme of the trip, mosquitoes and those nasty black flies that, to add insult to injury, sting you as well as suck your blood ‚Äì bastards! We set up camp on a relatively flat clearing just below the final steep switch back up to the causeway The files, sensing we were the only fresh blood for miles had now launched a full scale attack and we both wished to be anywhere but here. The Pups also were getting the shite bitten out of them ‚Äì poor babies cos their fur is pretty thick so the mozzies go for weak spot, the snout, and tis was a pitiful site to see Gaia lying stretched out look looking up at you all forlorn with a ton of bugs on there little nose.
In the morning we made a hasty clamber up to the Devils Causeway, a narrow piece of mountain that ran east west from out campsite. At one point it‚Äôs so narrow you can see the 500 ft drop on both sides. The pups had great fun chasing little critters and would run right up the the drop giving us a both near cardiac arrests a few times. The view from the tops was magnificent but we were in poor spirits due to the bugs so on return to camp we decided to ‚Äúblow the joint‚Äù and head for greener pastures. While we were evacuating the campsite a Ranger came by and upon inquiry about the bugs he commented that he hadn‚Äôt seen it this bad in years!
We took a little dip in the reservoir and decided we‚Äôd head for Steamboat and camp on the top of the Rabbit Ears pass in a Forest Service campground. On arrival we found a nice spot and I‚Äôm happy to say it was relatively bug free. The next morning we packed up camp and made our way down the other side of the pass and drove down a side road, parked and continues to hike down the dirt road ‚Äì no cars, no bugs and no rednecks/hunters nice …. dogs off leash and cool. We parked in a great future camping spot with lovely views of rolling hills so I made a mental note to go back sometime in the future to camp. We then headed back towards I70 and stopped in Frisco for some lunch. We hit the highway at peak rush hours it seemed and we sat in bumper to bumper to traffic ‚Äì arggg! At least an extra hour and a half of driving ‚Äì note to self ‚Äúavoid I70 at all cost on Sunday afternoon and early evening!!‚Äù
Summary: Not the best trip ever and perhaps staying at home would have been better idea 🙂 but it was nice to be outside with the pups in nature. Note to self ‚ÄúBugs and heat suck in July ‚Äì unless you‚Äôre up really really high forget it I say. Perhaps I should of used DEET as the stupid citronella bug spray did jack shite, the bugs seem to like it but then there‚Äôs the added nicety of DEET being a pesticide and it getting on my skin, clothes and on the dogs too.
Gear Comments: Would be nice to have an extra day pack to take with.
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