This is the second column about my road trip in 1969 through the western U.S. and Canada with my 6-month old Samoyed puppy, Jude. Last week was about our time in “Big Sky” Wyoming; this week it’s about Colorado’s magnificent Rocky Mountain National Park. (From which we almost didn’t get out alive!) But first, I better explain my title.

“Deep Throat” was a 1972 film which Wikipedia describes as “The forefront of porn’s Golden Age of porn.” (Porn had a Golden Age?) But Deep Throat was also the nickname given by famed reporter Bob Woodward of the Washington Post for FBI Deputy Director Mark Felt, the Watergate whistle blower whose information ultimately caused Nixon to resign. At Rocky Mountain Park, it’s very possible I had dinner with Felt and his wife as I will explain later.

As for the road trip into the country for this city boy, I didn’t prepare very well. For example, at the chilly Grand Canyon campground everyone’s fire pit was going so I chopped a few tree limbs not realizing wood had to be dead to catch fire. Frustrated, I doused the limbs with lighter fluid but when I lit the match the mini-explosion startled the entire campground. (I flashed a lame smile.)

I also didn’t buy tire chains because I discovered snow storms in May were so rare. At Rocky Mountain Park, when Jude and I arrived we found a campsite next to a fancy motor home. At sunset I took Jude into the quaint town outside the park when I noticed the air suddenly got very cold and eerily still. (Spoiler alert: “The calm before the storm” is true!)

After dinner, Jude and I went to bed but when I awoke the next morning the van was nearly buried in snow. Almost all the cars were gone while the rest were fleeing as fast as they could. Seeing snow for the first time, Jude dashed out of the van as though he was “Buck” in Jack London’s “Call of the Wild.”

Panicked, I wiped the windshield and eventually corralled Buck from frolicking in the snow. However, once we got onto the already icy highway the van skidded so badly I envisioned crashing over the guard rails and falling 8,000 feet below. Suddenly, a car behind me honked and signaled to pull over.

A worried young couple got out asking if I needed help with my chains until I sheepishly admitted I didn’t have any. They helped move all the weight in the van toward the rear to hopefully gain some traction. But to get out of the park we actually had to go higher and the snow flurries were so strong I was essentially driving blind. Finally, we reached the peak and began the slow descent as the snowfall lightened little by little until it eventually turned to rain.

In Denver I found a Motel 6 where I sneaked Jude in like he was a fugitive from “America’s Most Wanted Dog.” Almost magically the next morning’s sunrise was glorious as the TV news reported the historic May storm had moved out of the region and fair weather was predicted for the rest of the week.

With Jude hanging his head out the window, we drove back to Rocky Mountain Park which, blanketed in snow, was even more beautiful. It was almost empty but the motor home was still there so I parked in the campsite next to it. The wife was delighted to see Jude and I were safe and invited us to dinner with the caveat that her husband, whom she noted was 3rd in command in the FBI, didn’t like hippies. (But he being a dog lover, she insisted he would adore Jude.)

In fact we had a delicious dinner and Jude was the star of the evening. He obediently didn’t beg for food until after we ate when he got a ton of scraps. Smitten with Jude, the handsome but stern FBI official seemingly cut me some slack, “You aren’t really a hippy, you’re more of an outdoorsman.” Looking forward to dessert, I nodded in agreement.

Cut to 2005, when Mark Felt, 90 and frail, admitted publicly he was indeed Deep Throat. When the newscast described him as having been “3rd in command at the FBI,” a light bulb switched on in my brain. Though it had been thirty-six years, that was exactly how the woman had described her husband.

In preparing for this column, three weeks ago I found Felt’s daughter on Facebook and messaged, “Did your parents own a motor home?” If she ever responds and it’s “yes” it means I had dinner with the most famous whistle blower in U.S. history. To think, I never would have met him if Jude hadn’t let me tag along.

Due to a management decision, starting March 12, Laughing Matters has been cut back to every other Friday. Jack is at: facebook.com/jackneworth, twitter.com/jackneworth and jackdailypress@aol.com