Then, an unexpected ice patch sent his 2009 Tacoma barreling into an iron pole.
Wills was rounding a corner of an unplowed dirt road when he lost control over the rear end of his truck. As the back end swung out, Wills attempted to over correct and regain control - but by the time he was straight again, it was too late. Without time to turn onto the second turn of the meandering access road, he was headed off the road, through the sage brush, and into an iron pole.
Wills braced and slammed it head-on. The crunching and twisting of metal and plastic could be heard as the vehicle came to an abrupt stop. As the snow fell around him, he held still - attempting to process the moment. After ripping the keys out of the ignition, he threw open the door and ran to the front of the truck.
The front end of the Tacoma had wrapped around the pole, demolishing bumper, frame, radiator, and engine casing. The carnage was heart breaking. Days later, once the snow had settled, a tow truck was able to recover the vehicle and bring it to a collision shop, where it was deemed totaled.
With all of the damage the vehicle took, miraculously, the River Quiver mounted on top of the shell of the truck, not only stayed in-tact, but had barely move an inch from the force of the impact. Furthermore, the 3 rods stowed in the quiver: the 4,5, and 6 weight were in perfect shape and completely unharmed.
“I couldn’t me more grateful to have that Riversmith on my truck in that event,” said Donaldson. “To have to replace a truck was enough an endeavor - I’m glad to not be replacing fly rods too.”
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