New York to Nova Scotia
I red-eyed in from San Diego to New York, we stopped in Long Island to grab my BSA and Queens to grab Steve’s Triumph. The 68’ BSA Starfire stays in my parents shed. Steve just put his Triumph back together after blowing the engine for the second time. We loaded up the bikes and headed north. First stop was Neal Campbell’s Summer spot in New Hampshire. After a strenuously long day, we arrived at a Neal’s flower farm in Rye. Steve slept in the 1700’s era farm house while I chose to sleep in the flower garden. There was a new swell coming, but when we woke up, bright eye’d and bug bitten, it was still flat, so we went on a ride around New Hampshire and into Mass, stopping off visiting old friends and taking the back country roads. Steve lives in Brooklyn, and I live in San Diego, so the windy, tree walled forest roads are always a great break from the city/desert roads.
That afternoon we threw Neal and his longboard in the back of the truck and headed north for Maine. We wanted to ride through Acadia national park the next day. We got in, set up camp, had a couple beers with an old timer who just got back from a cross country trip with his wife in his sidecar and trailer in tow and called it a night. It rained through the night, and my lean-to tent gave me no break from the wrath of the northeast bug swarms. Again, bushy eye’d and bug bitten, we went for a ride through the park. We didn’t get far. Steve’s air filter was soaked so his bike kept loosing a piston. Once we got that working again, we rode for another couple of miles. The BSA started revving out as if I put race fuel in it and had wide open throttle, trying to set a speed record for a 250cc in a national park. I pulled over with Steve’s laughter to guide me to the shoulder. Un-known to me, Steve was dodging the trail of 1968 era British motorcycle parts strewn down the Acadia national park entrance. Foot pegs, rocker inspection caps, a spring or two, it’s dignity, all left on the hot pavement. All obstacles in Steve’s ride. The BSA was done for the day. We had a couple too many beers working on it in the campground throughout the night and in the morning we headed out for Nova Scotia.
Missing our ferry because of the time change we drove the entire route. Getting in just at golden hour, the swell had filled in to Nova and we got a fun 2-3ft logging session in Cow Bay. Steve drank beers on the beach while Neal and I traded off logging. We met up with Dean Petty at his spread in Cow bay, set up camp at dark on the back lawn and got some much needed sleep. Waking up to a barn on your right, a perfect a-frame out front and a right hand point up the street all in view, it was hard to take it all in at once. Steve’s bike was failing again so I rode solo as they trailed from Cow Bay to Halifax. Dean showed us around town for the day, skated a coupe of the cement parks in town and headed back to the house to get everyone’s bikes working right again. Dean got his CB “running,” and Steve got his bike “working” on the front lawn. We took a ride down to Lawrencetown to check the surf. It was blown out there so we trekked back to the house and surfed to point up the street. I shot as Neal and Dean traded off on their own personal right hand point playground until the sun completely set. Steve drank. We got back to the house where Dean BBQd some of the best chicken I’ve ever had and we crashed. The next morning we set off south, stopping in Portland, Maine, unloading the bikes, and taking a nice last 5 hour drive from Portland to Newburyport, Mass to finish off the trip.
Words by John O'Callaghan