Driving over steep, narrow mountain passes is no joke at the best of times. Even with a bona fide off-road vehicle, the worst can happen in a heartbeat. So imagine what went through the driver’s mind as he took his 30-foot box truck up Engineer Pass, a tight backcountry trail rising up to 12,800 feet in Southwestern Colorado, near Silverton.
According to a Monday report in the Durango Herald, this was supposedly a GPS error. Tow truck operator Wayne Barger summed up the situation by saying, “How they got that far is beyond me.” The box truck driver nearly made it to the summit, but decided to turn around and ended up in the situation you see above. As local photographer Thomas Livingstone’s photo makes clear, this is not just your typical dirt road. In fact, Engineer Pass is one of the most technical and difficult trails in the area, necessitating four-wheel drive and high ground clearance. And certainly a smaller footprint than a huge box truck.
Misadventure and (hopefully) rescue
Just as mind-boggling as the driver making it this far is the recovery effort involved to save the truck. Fortunately, Livingstone mentioned (per the Herald article) that the truck was not completely blocking the trail. Nonetheless, such tight quarters makes it tougher for any other vehicles, including the inevitable tow trucks that came to rescue the vehicle, to get by. At this point, we don’t yet have a full story on what happened past what happened in the photo above.
It’s also worth noting that there are no reports of injuries in this situation. It’s a story akin to the Jeep that ended up stuck on a bike trail last month. One wrong move could have ended in tragedy, and thankfully didn’t, but as it stands it’s an odd tale that is equal parts bizarre and impressive.
In fairness, it’s worth noting we do know a thing or two about truck-related misadventures.