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On the Road With Atlantic British - Spring Shakedown

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Posted On: Jun 9, 2017 By: Dave Bobeck Category: Land Rover News

As all of our loyal readers will know, our Inside sales team leader, Eric “extension 231” Riston can only sit at his desk and take calls for so long. Every year, as the snow starts to melt and white gives way to green, signaling the imminent end to the infamous, Land Rover-eating Albany road-salt season, Eric begins to develop a twitch. If left unaddressed, it may cause him to enter a catatonic state, making him useless on the phones. The only thing that can cure this condition is the rumble of a healthy Land Rover V8 engine, and the promise of an open stretch of highway, either the blacktop kind or the “Vermont divided” kind.

 

Vermont Divided Highway

With that out of the way, we bring you to the first 2017 installment of “On the Road” with Atlantic British. Take it away, Eric.

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With Memorial Day upon us, and the summer rally season fast approaching, it was time to pull the 'On the Road' Discovery 2 out of its winter slumber and give it a good shakedown run.

As a bit of background, this trip was inspired by a whistle stop tour to Bar Harbor, Maine last August. A Rover friend of mine was running a summer camp on a lake in the Bar Harbor area and asked me to come visit for a weekend. So I loaded my kayak on my Mini Countryman (the shame – Ed.) and looked for the most interesting non-highway route. That route led me north of Mount Washington on Route 302 through the small town of Bethlehem, New Hampshire - where I passed the most interesting little cottages for rent.

In March we had a warm spell that made me think of summer and that I needed to plan a trip. The cottages popped in my head, and what a great weekend-away destination they would make. A quick jaunt over to “the Google” - "cottages Bethlehem NH" produced instant results, with pics and everything. Within 24 hours we are all paid up and booked into a cozy “Style 5” for the holiday weekend. Admittedly it was only then that it hit me, this would be a perfect Rover shakedown run; just under four hours away, and a great mix of roads along the way.

 

NH Cottages

 

Finally the weekend arrived. I packed the OTR Discovery, fired up the motor and headed in the direction of NH. As Land Rover trips go, it was completely uneventful. Yeah, OK, the radio stopped working for a bit and the wipers needed replacing, but all-in-all we just effortlessly burbled along the ‘blue roads’ of three different states. One thing about living in the Northeast US, you're never far from a twisty road with great views. We arrived at the cottages in the mid afternoon and were warmly welcomed by Rhonda, who has owned the place for 27 years. She gave me the key and some directions and we were off to find our home for the weekend. Walking into our neat little cabin, built in 1937, was like stepping into a kids’ fairy tale book - stone fireplace, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom all in 500 square feet. It was perfect!

Once settled in, we spent our days exploring the local area and visiting various points of interest. ‘Playing tourist’ is what I like to call it. The Cog Railway up Mount Washington on a clear day was delightful, and I'd recommend that ride to anyone. Following the cog railway, we drove the Kancamagus Highway, an amazing Scenic Byway with breathtaking views. We stopped for lunch at Moat Mountain Brewery. The owner is a fellow Rover owner, so it's great to support him.

D2 out on the Road

 

Mt. Washington view

One thing I've learned in life is to always read hand written signs by the side of the road. Sometimes it's a kid’s lemonade stand that also has most amazing brownies. This time it was a sign for “Rek-Lis Brewery, now open”. Rek-Lis is a brewery in a backyard garden shed - they make some really great beer, and can host a maximum of six patrons at a time.

The return trip was mostly uneventful, the miles just ticked away as they always do in a Rover. As the summer fun gets in full swing and the odometer turns, pay attention to the little things along the road and make notes of places to look up and come back to. Life is an adventure if you choose to live it. Look us up and come back to this space for more On the Road adventures, and hopefully I'll see you at an off-road event sometime soon.

Cheers,

Eric

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