Thursday, August 16, 2012

Stuck at the happiest place on Earth

We are at Disney's Forth Wilderness Resort and Campground, in the heart of Walt Disney World (map). Regular readers will know that we've been here several times before, and we always seem to end up right here in the 1600 loop, Timber Trail. We are under the trees again, and so are online courtesy of my Sprint cell phone.

As private campgrounds go, this is among the best, if also among the most expensive. But it gives us access to the extensive transportation system as well as some extra hours in the parks, and we can charge absolutely everything on our room cards, which meant we only needed to carry one item to the water parks, very convenient.

One of the hazards of coming to Disney at this time of year is dancing around the nearly daily afternoon thunderstorms. We did not quite get it right -- we ended up at the Magic Kingdom Sunday night for extra magic hours, after dinner at Narcoosee's in the Grand Floridian (excellent). Apparently, Sunday night is still pretty busy compared to weeknights, and with half-hour-plus waits, we only made it onto a small handful of rides. In hindsight, we should have taken Monday night's extra magic hours at Hollywood Studios instead.

Tuesday afternoon we went to Typhoon Lagoon. We enjoyed the lazy-river attraction as well as the awesome wave pool (I've been in a lot of wave pools, and this one was, hands-down, the best), but before we could even get in line for one of the slides, the thunderstorms moved in and they closed the attractions. Just in the nick of time, too, as lightning then struck a tree inside the park, less than a thousand feet from where we were seated under cover. Quite impressive, actually.

We had a beer and hung around for nearly an hour to see if they would reopen the attractions, and, of course, they reopened right after we had showered and dressed for dinner in the locker rooms. Oh well. We did have a nice dinner al fresco at Downtown Disney.

Because we got rained out, I extended our stay by one night and called the tire shop to let them know about the delay. And we ended up using our second water park pass to go right back to Typhoon Lagoon yesterday afternoon, which was far more successful. We'll have to save Blizzard Beach, the other water park, for another visit.

When I stepped out of the coach yesterday, however, I noticed our right tag tire was flat. In fact, it was more than flat -- so much air had come out that the weight on that axle un-beaded the tire. That's not something I can handle myself, and so we rose early this morning and called Coach-Net (ironically, on the very last day of our membership year, although we've already renewed), and they were able to send a truck from the very place where we are headed for tires this afternoon. He brought one of our new tires with him, and after rolling the bus onto some blocks so we could get the jack under the A-frame, he put the new tire on the tag. It turned out we had picked up a sheet metal screw on our way here, which caused the tire to leak down while we were parked. Better on the old tire, a few days before its scheduled replacement, then on a brand new one, I suppose.

(Yes, I know the tire is also bald -- more on that in my next post.)

I had called the desk to let them know the tire truck was coming and that we might be a few minutes late departing, and they extended our checkout to 1pm. After a hot morning helping with the tire, and with more than an hour to our new checkout, I ran over to the pool for a quick swim before departure. We had already loaded the scooters and dumped the tanks while we were waiting on the tire truck.

In a few minutes, we will head out of the park and roll the 17 miles to the tire shop, to have the other new tire mounted, both new tires balanced, and the current steer tires moved to the tag axle. After that, the plan is still very much up in the air.


  1. Sean, I was concerned about my tags wearing on the edges as tags do. Mine are "cheap" Hankooks that are 4 years old and have about 65,000 miles on them all in the tag position.

    After seeing yours I think mine may last a little longer...


  2. Agreed on the typhoon lagoon wavepool comment. My friends and i have rented it on several occasions for late evening surfing. Very fun!


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