I Drove Edward Abbey’s Truck




“How to Avoid Pleurisy: 
Never make love to a girl named Candy on the tailgate of a half-ton Ford pickup during a chill rain in April out on Grandview Point in San Juan County, Utah.” 
–Edward Abbey

The auction of 4700-DN

Classic photographs
of Ed with his truck.
Copyright Jack Dykinga.

“I have come for two reasons. To get drunk and buy a truck.” Gail told a news reporter as she walked into the upscale Metropolitan Restaurant in Salt Lake City Utah on the evening of August 18, 1998. The truck in question was a battered and rusty 1973 blue Ford F-100 with a bluebook value of $500. The reason Gail wanted it was that it once belonged to Edward Abbey, author of “Desert Solitaire”, anarchist defender of wilderness. Ed’s widow Clarke Cartwright Abbey had attached a red silk carnation boutonniere to the hood and then laid the rest of the bouquet inside the jockey box before she donated the truck to the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA) to be the main attraction in a silent auction to raise money for the protection of Ed’s beloved redrock desert.

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