Colorado: Breck, Vail, & Aspen Part 1
Day 134: Denver, CO > Breckenridge, CO
Woke up with the task of the day to diagnose & fix the engine light that had been on since South Dakota. We had gone to the Firestone in Rapid City for a diagnostic, but they sent us away with an oil change, a new air filter, and no real resolution. The van struggles uphill & doesn’t have the same torque it used to. So, we started at a Transmission & Complete Auto care place to see what we could do. We had barely settled into a coffee in Golden when they called to say that it wasn’t the transmission, and they couldn’t help us…so much for “complete” auto care. We consulted the Internet and found Gene on a list of Sprinter Van specialists. Even better, he could take us right after lunch. We 3 hours after we dropped off the van, we had eaten a pizza and shopped for halloween costumes but Gene had only Googled a bunch of stuff to find out that our diesel particulate filter was clogged. He had no clue how to fix it. We left, I googled Diesel Particulate Filter and found a few truck shops that knew what to do. One was open until 1:00AM, so we drove straight over. Finally , these guys knew what they were doing. After a quick diagnostic, they determined we were good to get on the road. Just a little test had burned out enough soot in the DPS to turn the engine light off and get us going. The van certainly wasnt 100%, but we spent $250 instead of $800 + a hotel room for a full DPF cleaning. We thanked the mechanics and got right on the I-70 out of Denver. Well, not 20 minutes up the pass & the engine light came back on. The van definitely did not have full power. We couldnt look back, and decided to drive on, eager to see the leaves changing in the Rocky Mountains. We drove all the way to Breckenridge before we put the van in the park. Guess the DPF will have to wait until another day.Click here to Read More of our vanlife diary
Day 135: Breckenridge, CO > Aspen, CO
We woke up to snow flurries & were instantly excited. John went to go get us coffees, and landed in the fishing store for a renewal license. I got one too this time. We walked through Breckenridge & hiked up to the top to see a view of the ski hill. The town was beautiful and covered in a light snow. Then, we got back on the road. WE stopped for lunch at Peppi’s in Vail for some German food and then pressed on towards Aspen. The leaves were yellow & the air was crisp. We stopped to fish at Gypsum ponds. Didn’t catch anything, but had a lovely afternoon in the sun. I was happy to have some time to think & to blow off some steam. We got into Aspen late and went to HOp Culture for a few brew. The bartender set us up with some delicious drafts, and we chatted with a couple from Chicago. It was a good night.