Photography And Half-Thoughts By Mitchell Hegman

...because some of it is pretty and some of it is not.

Monday, June 12, 2017

It Takes a Thief (Yellowstone Trip, Part Two)

If there exists a definitive list of dos and don’ts for camping, one of the “don’ts” near the very top of the list should be this: Don’t slam the keys to your locked car inside the trunk of said car.
Camping is, to begin with, a celebration of minimalism.  You set out with as few resources as you possibly require for survival and then try to survive for a few days at some remote location.  Hopefully (or not) a location without cell service.  Your car in such case is definitely a required resource.
While camping alongside the cabins at Campfire Lodge Resort with us (during a seemingly never-ending rainstorm), a person we shall refer to as X slammed the keys to their locked car inside the trunk of said locked car.  As mentioned at the outset, I am proposing a kind rule against this sort of thing.  Access to your car is critical while you are at any such remote location.
Once the keys are locked in the trunk, you are left with few options.
One option is to abandon the car, all belongings inside, and flee to a small city where you can easily stretch a dollar.  Another option is to call a locksmith (not a valid option when camping at a location without cell service).  A third option is to panic wholesale and run off into the woods breaking low-hanging limbs off trees as you go.  A fourth option is to take the road less-traveled.  What I mean by this is: Find someone with experience in breaking into locked automobiles.  Possibly the nearest car thief.
Though option number one had sparking possibilities (everyone enjoys stretching a dollar), the fourth option was chosen by X in this case.  As luck would have it, the camp “handyman” thought he might be able to “access the vehicle.”  He immediately found in his workshed a length of wire with a hook on the end and a crowbar.
By prying open the door just a little and fishing the wire down to catch the door lock knob, the handyman  managed to pull it up to unlock the door.  He did this, and I am not kidding here, in less than two minutes.
Happy, curious campers once more!
Honestly, I wish to thank our local handyman.  He refused all offers for a gratuity in exchange for his services and simply suggested we have a great rest of the day.  Last we saw of him, he was zooming off through the woods on his four-wheeler, ghost-like, not breaking a single branch along the way.
So far as his skills at accessing locked vehicles—the phrase ignorance is bliss comes to mind.

--Mitchell Hegman