Saturday, March 03, 2012

The Big Rock Rolls to LA

Early Saturday morning, the 3rd of March, Dave headed towards LA to see LACMA's "Levitated Mass" take a stroll.  The rock, weighing in at 340 tons, has garnered a lot of press lately (with the best articles in the Los Angeles Times), and always one for a novel experience, I talked my husband in to going and see this beast.

It is HUGE.  Gigantor.  Massive.

We followed the map to where it was supposed to be.  Not there.  Just a few souls hitting lonely tennis balls on the local tennis courts.  We decided to drive the route backwards to see where it could be.

When we started to see intersections with their light signals turned to one side (we still don't know how they did THAT) and temporary stop signs, we knew we were getting close.  The rock, or Levitated Mass, as it is formally known was supposed to move during the night and park during the day.

Twenty-two southern California cities,  105 miles, 11 days,  294 foot-long truck.

But apparently this beast blew the transmissions of two trucks as it was going up hills last night.

It shows only two trucks in the schematic I found at the LA Times.  But we saw two trucks up front, and three trucks in the back pushing and pulling this beast of a load up the hill.

This blue truck was attached by a steel cable to the red truck in front.

The Levitated Mass, suspended from massive girders.

And here are two of the trucks in the rear, pushing by using these bars.  The grinding and growling noises of the trucks emphasized the effort that was being exerted.

A few tree branches here and there attested to the height and size of this conveyance.

I guess having truck troubles in the middle of the night paid off for us, because we got to see this outfit in action. Twice.  We watched it once, near the intersection of the 57 freeway and Pathfinder Road, then got onto the freeway, looped around ahead of it and watched it again.  Dave noted that as long as we made the effort, we might as well see it as much as we want to.

After it passed by, we got back onto the freeway and zipped home.

I remember once when I was a young mother hearing another, more experienced mother, tell about how one day she gathered up all her children and had taken them to watch a building being imploded.  I determined then to try and take in all of the offbeat experiences I could manage.  This ranks right up there. 


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Donna said...

Wow! Great footage and shots! We don't get regular tv where we live, so had to search and find out the "why". Interesting story to be a part of and a good story for telling for years to come. It's good to have that goal of getting to see as many unique to our lifetime events as possible.

Artax said...

That is pretty awesome. I wonder if this is how they got the rocks from Wales to Stonehenge.

Judy said...

Outstanding reporting, my friend. It looks like they'll be putting you on the LACMA staff soon! We're going to have to go see it in all its (unmoving) glory after it is installed.

The Barb Chronicles said...

Where exactly is this beast of a rock going to end up? I can't believe how big that thing is. very cool.

Krista said...

Wacky. Imagine coming up with an idea and then waiting four decades before it comes to fruition. I would have wanted to see it in motion, too. Glad you got a look!