Our first excursion after leaving Indiana was to drive straight to Colorado where we hooked up with my Cousin and climbing partner for a camping/climbing expedition in the Colorado Rockies. We hooked up with Bob Gallagher and Jim Gleason and headed for high elevations. This entailed reconfiguring the back seat by moving the platform and all gear to the far back of the vehicle so we could raise the back seats and make room for two more passengers and all of their gear.
By the time we got everything we needed into the vehicle the far back was packed to the ceiling and even the space between the passengers was piled high with gear. I figured we added an additional 500 or more pounds to the load; then we drove for miles on a four wheel drive road to access higher elevation. The truck, or Amelia, as she has affectionately come to be known, performed marvelously. On the final day however, while driving our passengers back to the airport on dry smooth pavement we noticed a pronounced shimmy at certain speeds. After dropping off Bob and Jim at the airport we took her in to an alignment specialist in Aurora Colorado. He informed us that the right front wheel bearing needed to be replaced. The cost was around $500. Of course we had to bite the bullet and have the work done.