The Camper’s Friend – NOT

Wheel full 70px Ahh, the delightful sights, sounds and smells of a tent site among the pines in the North Country.  The lush green boughs, the wind rustling through the needles, the plip-plip-plip of wonderfully aromatic pine gum dripping onto  your barely used MSR Hubba Hubba tent all night…



Wheel full 70px Hey, wait a minute!  What’s this “plip-plip-plip” stuff?  Well…


The Enemy

Wheel full 70px This pine gum is stickier than Crazy Glue and has a particular affinity for ripstop nylon.  I used about half of my first aid kit alcohol swabs this morning cleaning the tent, which would have otherwise glued itself to itself in a small red nylon mass had I simply packed it up.

Wheel full 70px Next time I am at a campground in the piney woods I will find the site in an adjacent meadow.  I can go sit under the trees any time I want.

Wheel full 70px Lesson learned.

Another great Nova Scotia bike shop

Wheel full 70px I took the Surly into Manser’s Bike Shop [linkie] in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia yesterday for a check up and some adjustments.


Wheel full 70px Jordan, the shop’s mechanic, went over the bike from front to rear, tightening a loose quick release on the front wheel, custom bending a fender bracket that was causing occasional rubbing, properly torquing the headset, and making some needed adjustments to the front and rear derailleurs.  The bike has never shifted as smoothly as after him doing this.

Wheel full 70px All told, he probably spent an hour working on the bike, all the while chatting with me about my trip, Surly bikes, Brooks saddles, and other stuff.  The shop was busy, too.  He handled a couple of customers and dealt with several phone calls while I was there.  I was, if you haven’t figured it out already, really impressed.

Wheel full 70px I won’t tell you what he charged me; I’ll just note that I must have gotten the long-distance bike rider discount rate.  A Five-Star experience!


Wheel full 70px Yarmouth is a nifty little city, with a great historic downtown.  I had some non-trip related business here that took a bunch of time out of the remainder of my day, but I’d come back here as a tourist and hang out for a few days in a heartbeat.