Chapter 20-2: Driving my Dream Car

In the 1990’s Land Rover had introduced the Defender 90 to the U.S. and a bright yellow version was the 4-Wheeler of the Year. I’m not sure whether it was the color or the Brit in me but that was my dream car for the next few years, until 2003 when Jeep came out with the Rubicon and displaced the D90 as my dream car.

On our second day we rented a bright red 4 door Rubicon and headed off up Cement Creek to Gladstone, an old mining town founded in 1878, named for the Great British statesman William Ewart Gladstone, who served four terms as Prime Minister and was a strong opponent of the opium trade, and the Opium Wars. It seemed we could not get away from talk about opiates! By 1887 the town was thriving with the discovery of gold  and the opening of the Gold King, Sampson and Mogul mines. Today at Gladstone one can see the ruins of the Mogul mill site, which produced million in gold, silver and copper during a three-year period. In the late 1890’s the Gold King mill was constructed.

I had a blast as I drove over Hurricane Pass, California Pass, up Placer gulch and down Picayune gulch. Bob’s plan failed dismally. His thinking was rent the Rubicon for a day, so his wife could get it out of her system. Only now she realized how much more fun she could have with an automatic four-wheel drive vehicle, and she really wanted one. And being the good husband, he said, ‘Go for it, get the car you want.’