As I climbed onto the step at the driver’s door of the Beast I hung on the open door and called out to Nathan to turn the CB radio onto channel ten. It made sense not to use one of the road channels like channel forty or the channels the roads crews and the like used. It wasn’t that I knew there was other people using those channels it’s was just a bit of country courtesy in case they did need to use them and we were busy talking about what we were doing.
I climbed into the driver’s seat and shut the door, before kicking the engine over I adjusted one of the radios to channel ten, grabbed the mic and told Nathan I was there. After he responded to let me know he was also on channel I started the engine.
The three slackers, I mean Nick, Matthew and Derrick, stood out to my right about five meters, it was a spot that was not only safe from the worse case scenario of snapping the chain but it also meant that they could see both myself and Nathan if they need our attention.
“Ready Nathan?” I asked after pushing the button on the CB microphone.
“Roger Dean.” came the reply.
“Alright mate. Remember, Wait until I take up the slack, then light on the throttle. I’m pulling you out you are only assisting.” I said.
“If she starts spinning let me know and we’ll stop and give it another go.”
Nathan confirmed he was ready and I did one final mental check list then put the Beast into gear. As I released the clutch and gently eased down on the accelerator the Beast rolled forward slowly. There wasn’t much slack in the chain but at the same time I didn’t want to take up what slack there was, too quickly.
I’d only rolled a few meters forward when Nathan’s called came across the radio. “Slack’s nearly up Dean.”
“No worries.” I called out loudly to the mic without removing my hand that was holding it from the steering wheel.
As I spoke I felt the pull of the chain going tight between the two vehicles.
Well I was right about one thing, Nathan was nothing like the dickhead I nick named Mr. Beckham because from the second the slack was taken out of the chain there was no high revving, no digging himself into the sand further and no stupid know-it-all behaviour. We didn’t get the truck out but that had absolutely nothing to do with anything Nathan did at that time.
“Give it a little more power this time Nathan.” I said into the mic. “Not too much, we don’t want spinning but we really want that right hand side bogie helping with the drive. “
“Roger Dean, more power, no spinning.” came the reply.
My thoughts that Nathan was taking it easy on the first pull where confirmed when the truck came out on the second pull. It wasn’t quite that easy, the left hand wheels of the truck did spin a little bit before finding their grip on the MAXX TRAXX and the engine of the Beast was roaring underneath me but the truck did come out of the sand.
Not only did the truck come out of the sand but Nathan wasn’t an idiot and he didn’t drive the bloody thing up the back end of the Beast before he stopped like I’m sure Mr. Beckham would have done without too much effort.
I must say that while I was hopeful I was going to be able to remove the truck from it’s bog the moment I first heard about it, that didn’t mean I didn’t have a few doubts creep into my mind from time to time until the moment the truck was on solid ground. Thankfully though none of those doubts came to fruition and we didn’t need to call in heavy haulage from Broome.
After we’d packed away the MAXX TRAXX, the chain and the shovels Matthew, Nick and I then helped Nathan and Derrick reconnect the trailer to the back of the truck. Nathan backed the truck up to the trailer on a nearly ninety degree angle,because of the long draw bar of the trailer hooking it up from such an angle was not an issue and it kept the rear truck wheels well away from the soft sand. With the reversing camera on the rear of the truck Nathan barely needed us to direct him, but we still helped.
Once the truck and trailer was hooked up and we worked out all the financial side of things I invited the boys to another cold bottle of water, to which they all accepted. After Matthew did the polite thing and retrieved he bottles from the fridge of the Beast we all adjourned to the shade of the removalist truck and had ourselves a cold bevvie before we were to part company.
Before Nick had drained the last of the water from his bottle the radio in his cop truck was squawking loudly trying to get his attention. As usual his window was down and the volume of his radio up so that he could hear it squawk if dispatch was trying to get hold of him. He excused himself and headed towards his four wheel drive.
The remaining four of us stood behind the big fibreglass box enjoying the slight drop in temperature that it gave us from the sun. I was just about ready to suggest it was time to head off when Nick walked around the front of the truck and told us he had to leave. He’d been called to some sort of issue at Lake Argyle which was about an hour and a half north of Halls and had to leave immediately.
After he bid the boys farewell I walked back to his cop truck with him and asked him what was going down and if he needed any help. I understood that whatever he was being called to might not have been something Nathan and Derrick needed to know but I wasn’t going to let Nick leave without at least offering my help. He declined and told me to go home and enjoy some time at home with Matthew and that sounded like a fairly decent idea to me.
Previous Desert Rescue story here.