A Big Snowfall / My Outlander ATV Gear Shift Finally Breaks

The day before yesterday we began to see weather reports calling for up to 25cm (10 inches) of snowfall overnight.  I suited up and used my roof rake (great product, by the way…) to clean off the yurts, sauna, cabin and dojo tent.

In the morning, it looked like we had clearly gotten a fair amount of snow, but it didn’t look that crazy at first.

Doesn’t look too bad from here.

I trudged out to the dojo tent and started up the ATV (I think I should name her – she’s earned it!) and after a few moments eased into some light ploughing.

Quickly I realized that we had had close to 20cm.  The ATV could barely push her way to the entrance of our driveway, and then got stuck as soon as I hit the combination of an uphill climb and the snow that the road plough had deposited on the surface.  With a little back and forth and raising the blade, I was able to get to the road surface where I attacked the entrance at a more oblique angle.

Returning to the cabin I managed to push away enough snow from the dojo tent to the cabin to ensure that we could still get vehicles right up to the cabin.

Oh to be young again!

After a break for lunch, Donna and Kenny came out to help clear around the vehicles and I spent the afternoon taking short trips back and forth in a herringbone pattern up the driveway betwixt the entrance and the dojo tent.  The banks needed to be pushed back significantly to allow our vehicles to continue getting in and out the remainder of the season.

Stuck in reverse?!

Fortune smiled on me, as once the bare minimum was complete, and I was about to really start clearing the surface, the shifter on the ATV suddenly became extremely sloppy and refused to move out of reverse.

Careful examination revealed that the stress of all my back and forth had finally caused the shifter to fail.  I believe this is a known weakness of the early Outlander models, I can’t speak to if Bombardier has addressed this or not.  It’s a pretty weak shifter to begin with, and the transmission is also very sticky and often requires extra effort to switch gears.

I was facing away from the dojo tent, and stuck in reverse, so I simply backed into the tent and retrieved my wrenches.

The side panel had already shook loose, so I moved it aside and with my wrench set, removed the pieces of the shifter.

No real surprise that this thing failed.

They’ll be off to get welded (and hopefully reinforced at the same time) and we’ll hopefully have the ATV back in action soon.

Just happy to be out in the sun.

With the ATV kaput, Donna and I cleared around the Echo and then I did some little chores before heading back inside and calling it a day.

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