Monday, February 21, 2011

Santa Anita

No hike today. I had several little things planned today, beginning with getting my "free" beer mug from Santa Anita. Then it was going to be "free" paper from Staples. Then I was going to use a very inexpensive Metrolink ticket to get me to some amusement for less than half of the regular price.

The first part went fine. I parked on Huntington Drive and walked to the track (about one mile, round-trip), then snapped a few pictures. It's a very scenic backdrop. Dead center, over the big screen, is Santa Anita Canyon. The road cut that cuts diagonally across the hill is the road to Chantry Flats.

To the east, you can see Monrovia Canyon, and the dam in Sawpit Canyon. Further east of that is Baldy. To the west of Santa Anita Canyon, you can see the ridge-running firebreak that would take you towards Mt. Harvard, on your way to Mt. Wilson.

On the way to Staples, my car died. I had just started accelerat-ing from a stop light, when I noticed I was losing velocity. Pressing the gas pedal had no effect. Then I figured out my rpms had dropped to zero, so my engine wasn't running, any more. I flipped on my blinker and coasted safely to the curb. Fortunately, there wasn't much traffic so the coasting part worked. If I had run out of coast, then I would have needed to push my car to the side of the road, and that wouldn't have been any fun.

Several hours later, I got the bad news on the repair: Faulty fuel pump. Ouch!

Personally, I was rooting for the cheapest possible explanation: clogged fuel filter. Nope.

However, I'm counting myself fortunate the failure occurred on a four-lane surface street with a 35 mph speed limit, versus a ten-lane divided highway with a 70 mph speed limit.

Of course, this means no hiking tomorrow. Maybe Wednesday?

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