2012 Trip 6: Yuuuup...the're teardroppers

Rollins Pond SP - Aug 2012

Headed out Friday morning, bit of an extra long weekend. Back to Rollins Pond, as the lure of a site directly on the water is truly most appealing. It is a nice drive to the Adirondacks, as it is mostly on secondary highways through quite scenic countryside.
The most noticeable sight once we cross the border is green grass. Green everywhere actually. This area has clearly gotten more rain than Ottawa and surrounding areas have. No yellow grass or scorched earth anywhere, the lushness is nice to see. Spotted this restored pickup towing a big 5th wheel... very old school looking.

Stopped in Tupper Lake for supplies and poked around a few of the shops. Right from the outset we are certainly making it a relaxed trip. We enjoy looking around little towns, the sights and the sometimes unique and interesting shops and this trip primarily hardware stores.  Wandered through a classic hardware store, which I discovered from talking to a gentleman there, that it has been in business in the same location since 1920, and is in the 3rd generation of family ownership. Picked up groceries at another old time store in Tupper, the IGA. A good spot, with a nice deli offering all sorts of homemade goodies. I picked up a couple of deli items, including some baked beans which truly did look homemade.

Finally arrived at our site around 3pm. The campground is pretty full, as it probably usually is. Rolled by two older guys walking along the road, they took a look at us, the Alto, and just as we passed, one of them pronounced "Yuuuup, the're teardroppers". Hence the byline to this post. Classic. Our site is nice, right on the water with a nice little beach. Most sites at Rollins can be a little tight and open, which our is, but the fact that you can walk 20 feet to the water and plop down a chair on your own little slice of sand beach, more that makes up for being close to your fellow campers. We were able to back the Alto in at a nice angle to expose the door side to the water.

There is a simply lovely onshore breeze blowing through the site as we get set up. This was heavenly to feel, as for almost the past 2 months, it has been stinking hot in the city, and any breeze feels as if it is coming right out of an oven. Set up quick, then sat on the beach and enjoyed the lake. There is a nice vintage Airstream across the road from us. It must be pretty old, as the number over the front window is 1500, assuming of course that is a production number. It is in great shape, and my pure guess would put it as being a late 60's model. These trailers are truly iconic... such a distinctive shape and truly in a league of their own.

Dinner is a batch of sliders. For those not in the know, these are simply little hamburgers. The beauty of them is in their size. Being tiny, you can have 2 or 3, and dress each of them up to be a different taste experiences. Big spoonful of beans, a cold beer, and you have a tasty Friday night camp meal. Picked up a six of an IPA called Red Hook. The name caught my eye, and then a read of the can revealed them to be a probably pretty quirky company. The contents did not disappoint.

Right after dinner, we could hear in the distance the sound of the ice cream truck that makes the rounds of the sites every evening. We could not resist. Nice couple running this little enterprise, and he asked us right away if we came through Tupper, as he had seen us parked alongside the road, and thought the Alto was quite cool. Dale gave him a quick looksee while I got the cones. We each got a single scoop, which turned out to be the size of a softball. I have no idea just where a second scoop would go...

Walked down to the beach, watched the sunset, and enjoyed our cones. A short time later, the ducks arrived. We could see them a little off shore to the right of us, and it soon became clear that they had made course adjustment and were heading straight for us... almost a gaggle of them. Sure enough, they soon established a beachhead, and made their way right to our chairs... all of them well focussed on our cones. This must be a regular routine for the ducks around here, as there was no hesitation in approaching us. Unable to resist, I offered up a chunk of cone. How could you not? How often do you have a duck, or group of them for that matter, 6 inches from your feet. Naturally, this was probably a mistake, as they became quite adamant they wanted the entire cone. Well behaved mind you, just insistant. Dale got a little intimidated by this, and soon beat a retreat a little bit aways. It then popped into my head that this was a good opportunity for a vid, as the whole scene became pretty funny. Up close, with a massive bill dominating their head, it is pretty funny.Settled in to read the paper, listening to a playlist, to wind down the day.

Woke up early, a carry over of work, but it seems that is the way we get when you are wired to get up for work every day. Fortunately, rolling over and going back to sleep seemed to work, to grab a couple of extra hours. Another nice nice day ahead of us. Read yesterday's paper, put on some stovetop expresso, a little breakfast, and that was pretty much the morning. Got the foldies ready to take a little cruise of the campgrounds, and make our way to the great camp store, just before the front gates. From where we are on Rollins, this is probably about 6 klm each way. A good little hike, considering the rolling hills along the way. It is great just cruising along on the foldies, this is a perfect campground for them, as all the roads are paved and they follow the shoreline. Lots of campers this weekend, both in Rollins and Fish Creek. Rollins is the non boating peaceful pond, while the bigger Fish Creek Pond is quite busy with all sorts of boaters, including the seriously annoying jet ski, the mosquito of the water...

The camp store is a classic Adriondacks store, filled with everything one could want or need to survive a weekend. The place is always hopping, clearly a gold mine. They cover all the bases, food, camp supplies, clothing, goodies for the kids and a deli/pizza counter for those simply unable to rustle together some grub. Pretty hot ride over here, so we took advantage of the big walk in beer fridge to cool off... Dale doing her best to fake interest in the beer while absorbing the cool temp.
Picked up a few things including cold Saranac Lake Root Beer (a popular local classic), then headed home on the foldies.
A nice swim cooled us of a bit when we got back to the site, but only a bit as the water was pretty much warm.

Several people dropped by asking us about our trailer, so we had an afternoon of chatting with all sorts of folks. This is kinda what camping is all about. Meeting and talking to your fellow camper. We have observed that Americans in their campgrounds are a lot more friendly and talkative than Canadians in theirs, a noticeable difference that we have seen over the years. The site beside us is empty, little wonder considering the slope it has, so a number of people have been using it to get to the water and beach. Nice conversations with all of them.

We had forgotten to pick up more milk, as we used a bunch of it in the morning to make coffee from the expresso, so we hopped in the car and took a quick drive in. This gave me the opportunity to try out my latest purchase, a 12 volt inverter. An inverter takes 12v right from the battery, or the lighter outlet, and converts it to 120v AC. I decided to pick up one of these for the times when we have non-electrical sites, and I need to charge the battery in the laptop, or any other device for that matter. Picked one up a Can Tire, a 300 watts unit, which will more than power the AC charger of a laptop. A half price sale made it mine for about $25. There are lots of more powerful ones on the market, but this will suit fine. Pretty simply to operate, plug it into the lighter outlet, plug in the charger, turn it on, and voila, you have AC. You have to monitor how much you use the inverter as it could suck all the energy right out of the battery, although according to the instructions, there is a low battery voltage alarm that will let you know this is happening, and if you ignore this, it will turn itself off. In the short time we were driving,it seemed to top up the battery quite nicely.

Sat on the beach, swam and sat on the beach even more, until the sun went down. Only then did we have a G&T and start to get the pizza ready for dinner.
Really nice evening, ate dinner at the picnic table and enjoyed the sunset afterglow. Retired into the Alto and just chilled. Weather reports on the NPR channel out of Tuppper Lake are calling for storms tomorrow.

Heavy overcast this morning and rain is looking pretty ominous. The radio is calling for a serious storm, high winds, heavy rain and hail. We decided to pack up and head home. No point hanging around if it is not going to be a nice day, particularly when we have to head home early Monday anyways. A big cloud rolled in a dropped a serious dump of rain for about a half hour, a confirmation of our decision to head out. It does not take us long to break camp and just before we left I took a stroll down the road to scope out some future site. The solar was not effective this weekend as it never seemed to get enough sun on this site. There are more sunny sites further down the road, so hopefully next year we can book on of those. Rollins is a great campground, even more so if you are on one of the beach sites. There truly is something awesome about walking right onto the beach and into the lake from your site... hard to beat that!


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