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Storm Chase Vehicle

1999 Honda CR-V EX
 
- Currently has 454,000 km on it with no sign of slowing down or letting up. I'm confident that I'll be able to take it up to a half million, no problem.
 
- Bought brand new without ever taking it out for a test drive. 3 weeks after I drove it off the lot, I was drilling holes in the roof to mount my equipment.
 
- Has been featured in numerous TV specials and news clips worldwide, including Discovery Channel, The Weather Network, MSNBC
 
- Has been extensively featured in my TV series "Angry Planet" which has been broadcast in over 100 countries on Pivot TV, The Travel Channel, OLN, City TV, The Weather Channel, Halogen TV and more.
 
- The vehicle has survived 12 hurricanes & tropical storms, including hurricanes Sandy and Katrina.
 
- It survived being inside a tornado in 2003. I had to drive with the wind to decrease the force of the debris impacts. Sustaining only one small dent!
 
- The hood is dimpled by the force of tennis ball sized hail stones that smashed the front windshield.
 
- During hurricane Rita, it drove through flood water so deep, it was coming up over the hood. No snorkel required.
 
- The engine did fill with sea water during hurricane Ike in Galveston. We had to wring out the air filter, then pull the spark plugs & take a piece of the windshield washer hose and use it like a straw and suck the salt water out of the engine cylinders. When we got it started, a geyser of water shot out the tailpipe. It drove from Texas back to Toronto, no problem.
 
- I've driven it to the top of Mount Washington in New Hampshire, home of the "Worst weather in the world"
 
- It has been 14,110 feet up the side of Pikes Peak in Colorado.
 
- In 2012, I drove the Honda across Canada, filming winter weather for the "Stormhunters' show on The Weather Network. The trip was 35 days and covered 17,000 km. We drove from Toronto to Vancouver, then up to Dawson City Yukon, where we got onto the treacherous Dempster Highway. It was 2 days (each way) of driving on a remote dirt road in the middle of winter, across the Arctic Circle. We then drove onto the ice road in Inuvik en route to Tuktoyaktuk, the farthest north you can drive to in Canada. Most of the ice road was on the frozen Mackenzie River, but for the last portion, we were driving on the frozen Arctic Ocean!
 
- It has been rear ended 3 times and is none the worse for wear. 2 of those times the CR-V required no repairs. The same cannot be said for the other vehicles involved.
 
- It was broken into once and I managed to chase the would-be thief several blocks before finally catching him.
 
- The car has made appearances in The Driver Magazine, National Geographic News, The National Post, Explore Magazine, The Globe & Mail, and many more.
 
- It spent a week on display at the Ontario Science Centre museum as part of the "Nature Unleashed" exhibit. It was also on display in 2016 during the "Wild Weather' exhibit.
 
 
 

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The Honda CR-V under the northern lights in Tuktoyaktuk in the Northwest Territories.
Making a splash during a newspaper photo shoot.

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On Mount Washington in New Hampshire, home of the "World's Worst Weather"
After Hurricane Katrina in Gulfport, Mississippi.

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While filming episodes of "Angry Planet" we had to cram all this gear into the CR-V, plus 2 people. It all fit.
Heavy snow squalls in Ontario.

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Road Closed? Oh, so NOW you tell me!
This time, the snow was little too deep, even for the Honda.

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The CR-V is amazing, but sometimes, it still needs a helping hand.
Snow, sand... Whatever.

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The inside has been customized for storm chasing with video equipment, 2-way radios, GPS and mobile internet feeds.

Here is the view to the navigator's position.

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During Hurricane Ike, in Galveston, Texas - The Gulf of Mexico started rising up and flooding the island.
The CR-V was able to bash through it. Remember, that's salt water!

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Eventually, the flooding got too deep and the engine pulled in sea water. We used the washer fluid line to suck the salt water from the cylinders. It worked! and I was able to drive it back to Toronto!
This giant wave at Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia during Hurricane Noel came crashing down on me and the Honda about one second after this photo was taken. We both survived.

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There's nowhere I wouldn't take this vehicle. Here it is in Hyder, Alaska in mid-winter.
The badlands of South Dakota.

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I always said that the car belonged in a museum and for a week, it was! We it is on display at the Ontario Science Centre
Yep, that's the Arctic Circle, along the notoriously dangerous Dempster Highway in the Yukon.

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Welcome to the Northwest Territories. I drove here from Toronto, filming several episodes of "Stormhunters" for The Weather Network.
The sign says "Enter Ocean" !! Yep, this is the northern end of the ice roads on the Beaufort Sea... We're parked on the Arctic Ocean!

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Check the GPS display... That's no mistake, we're driving on the Arctic Ocean.
Sunset in Tuktoyaktuk, the farthest north you can drive to in Canada.

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Dazzling northern lights in Dawson City, Yukon.
More amazing northern lights.

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Back onto the ice road.
Devil's tower, Wyoming. Made famous by the film "Close Encounters of the Third Kind".

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Hurricane Isabel in North Carolina.
Going LIVE to the world via a news broadcast truck in the middle of a flooded park during Hurricane Isabel.

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Thin air. At the summit of Pike's Peak, Colorado. Altitude = 14,110 feet. The CR-V had no problems with it.
The storage space below the rear floor is filled with my fuses, relays, and a deep cycle battery that feeds the electronics and lights.