Bear Naked Growler

Bear Naked Growler

IMG_0091camper packed and ready to go!

Beautiful weather greeted us on Wednesday May 9th. With camper completely loaded and all essentials packed we struck out transversing western Maine. New Hampshire’s White Mountains were a little challenging but the F150 made easy work of them. We crossed into Vermont at noon. At the state Welcome Center we took a break for lunch and to take in the scenery. But trouble was a head…

An hour into Vermont we came across a lot of construction. As we passed through Montpelier, my TPMS system started screaming! “What the hell is that!” A quick glance exposed the issue. It was clear I had a leak in a tire …and I just passed a gas station! (30’ campers DON’T turn on a dime). Crap! “Quick dear, look for a safe place for us to pull over!” There wasn’t any. 40…36 …33…29, air pressure was going down… and fast! 20… 15… “Can I pull in there?!” “No!” was the reply. 10… 6… “How about there?” Yes!

I parked at Riverside Tavern, home of the Bear Naked Growler, as the last couple of pounds of air escaped the tire. Well, if you are going to have a flat, why not at a tavern. A quick call to Good Sams and we will be back on the road in short time.

Bear Naked Growler (Riverside Tavern) and 2 beers

Uh… not exactly. Good Sams said there would be a 3 hour wait! Okay…”What kind of beer do you serve?…”

4 hours later, the repairman arrived. He had reasons why he was held up but that didn’t ease the pain of the wait. It took all of 10 minutes to jack up the trailer, take off and replace with the spare and pick up his tools. Frustrating ,,,but we used the time wisely. During the 4 hours, we went for our walk, patronized the bar and took a nap.

IMG_0098Nailed it! How does a nail do this in a tire?

On to New York! We finally arrived in Malone sometime after 10:30 PM but technology is not perfect. It took another half an hour to find the Walmart. (If I wasn’t looking for it, I am sure we would have ran into it within 5 minutes! Thank you GPS). Matters were complicated because my truck was running on empty.

After resupplying our camper, fixing the flat (now our spare), eating breakfast and having my morning coffee, we were ready to strike out for Canada. A plus to staying at a Walmart, I was able to get the flat fixed in quick time but I still needed gas. Hauling a huge tin can through a built up town is always a challenge but I figure people look out for us (after all, we are LARGE). I was able to squeeze into a corner filling station in downtown Malone before heading north.

It was a warm 72 as we left the USA but we ran into showers in Canada. (Even a downpour in Ottawa, which makes traveling in traffic interesting). For the most part the roads in Canada are better than New England ones, so the ride to North Bay was uneventful. Except the cold! There were patches of snow in sheltered areas and ice chunks flowing down the rivers. Wow! And the temperature went to 30 that night. The next day wasn’t any better …highs barely got to 40! (Note to Mother Nature – IT IS ALMOST SUMMER!)

Lake Superior is huge and very cold. Needless to say, passing back in the USA at Sault St Marie (pronounced “sue saint marie”) temps remained cold. Large ice chunks dotted the shoreline, clearly remnants from a cold winter. So our next stay, a Walmart in Marquette, MI, promised to be a chilly one as well. Even though we have seen a fair amount of campers, the camping season hasn’t started and neither has summer vacation. Traffic was light.

We finally arrived at our first destination …Knife Island Campground in Duluth! If I had only bought a Bear Naked Growler back in Vermont to celebrate the accomplishment …

camper front


STAY TUNED! More “tales from the campah”! Coming soon.


Yellowstone NP

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One thought on “Bear Naked Growler

  1. Glad to see you made it through the flat! Can’t think of a better place to have to wait it out!! Safe travels and I will be ready your way to Yellowstone!


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