Trucker drives from Ouray to Silverton…Backwards

(Red Mountain) An Oklahoma trucker has successfully negotiated the 23 miles between Ouray and Silverton, in the San Juan Mountains while in reverse gear. Les Abbey, 46 of Lawton cruised his 1964 modified diesel porterhouse-gear henway by rear view mirrors and a lot of heart up and down one of the more demanding natural courses on the planet. What’s even more astounding is that he did it in just under an hour.

“I couldn’t have done it with my trailer attached,” said Abbey who was arrested on his return trip (forward) at about dawn. He was charged with reckless driving, failure to dim lights and making fun of tourists’ little dogs while in Silverton.

This daredevil feat is the latest since May when police stopped patrolling the San Juan Triangle due the price of gasoline. Readers may recall the now legendary Swan Dive Incident which frightened mountain goats and sent ice climbers scurrying over Valentine’s Day or the semi that descended from Ironton on three wheels, rubber burning all the way to town, in March.

“Some people don’t have enough to do in the winter and others are just a pain in the ass,” said a local sheriff who is investigating the mischief as part of the annual summer crackdown.

Man-Eating Panther May Have Moved On

(Telluride) The large black panther that has been roaming the region between Alta Lakes and Blue Lakes has not been seen for about two weeks, leading authorities to believe he has moved on. The hungry, aggressive predator is blamed for the deaths of at least nine people since April.

“At first we didn’t know if it was a cougar, a catamount, a puma, a mountain lion or a panther,” said one official gov’ment tracker. “Our hands were tied until a specific tag could be established. When we heard back from some agency or the other the cat was well on his way to eating himself a starting baseball team. By then it was too late.”

Although not generally dangerous to man, mountain lions are powerful and intelligent enough to catch a whiff of their prey, sneak up silently, pounce from cover and drag a human into the bush for lunch, especially when the ground is wet. The ancients didn’t call them hippolestes, or horse killers for nothing. Hungry cats like this are rarely spotted so close to civilization but the reality of foothill suburbs and expanding recreational facilities has infringed on traditional prowling territories.

“We think he moved over toward Durango where there has always been a lot of unsuspecting game this time of the year,” said the tracker of the panther.

“When the open hold was filled with young cattle, packed as tightly as they could stand, the owners with their wives or sisters, who go with them so as to prevent extravagance in Galway, jumped down on the deck and the voyage was begun.”

– John Millington Synge The Aran Islands. (circa 1900).

Filed Under: Reflections on Disorder


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