Ontario in the Fall

Weekend fun with Ryan, we got the Rover out to do Rover things… 😀  I have been yearning to get out and hit a trail, although at the same time, I know it won’t be what I enjoyed in Colorado (frankly nowhere else in the world measures up), BUT Ontario and its plethora of lakes and forests has lots to offer.

I took the opportunity to head out with my youngest (Ryan) to explore Puzzle Lake Provincial Park.  And I have to say we were not disappointed.


The area is an outdoorsmen’s heaven… there is no shortage of small lakes, trails and fishing spots.  Oh and there are tons of primitive camping locations!!  Absolutely beautiful.  On our outing, we found an old farm-house to explore plus we made it to the lake – which had several campsites and a canoe launch.  AND the views were nice…

So the drive… as this is the start of fall the leaves were getting ready to turn and fall… which made for some nice scenery along the drive.  And along the trail too.

The trail.. .the Rovery bits… 😉  Well it was not as challenging as some of the other trails we’ve done, however it was not a fire road either.  I would rate it as a 2 out of 5 only because of the water.  There was a significant amount of water and this added some level of ‘stress’ as each spot had to be surveyed to ensure it was passable.  Some were considerably deep too…

Overall the road / drive and scenery added up to a great day!  If you are in the area of Kingston / Ottawa I would recommend taking a drive out this way.  Even bring your kayak or canoe and BBQ make a day or weekend of the trip.

I know we will be back here again!!

Safety DONE! The experience…

So… as I have already said the Rover is Canadian!!  😀  But I wanted to shout out to a few locals and Ottawatonians that helped get the Rover here…

There were some difficulties with the MTO and the decisions made by the inspecting tech, but that is a difficult thing to pin down.  The Rover was picked up for a couple of things as I described before… but in my ‘laymens’ mind only one item was necessary.  AND the others were not.  Either way it is done!!

First of thank you to @Adam Chappell and the guys at Diesel Rover… they were quick to repair an issue I had and made my life easy!!  I would highly recommend this shop and Adam to any Rover owner.  I would not hesitate to go here again.

Second was Madeley Automotive – where Brian and his team were amazing!!  They did what had to be done and know how to treat my Rover and customers.  The work they did was exacty what I needed and very good work.  I will be frequenting this shop as needed, for future Rover needs.  Oh and they are local, so I can easily access the shop!

Despite a rough MTO safety, the experience brought me to these 2 great shops!!  I am glad I met both Adam and Brian.

MTO Saftey… ugh!

So here we are getting the Rover ready for its Canadian citizenship ;).  I was not too worried, had a couple of issues that I thought might be trouble…  guess I should have worried more.

My list from the inspection…

  • Lights out (marker, brake, etc)
  • Tires have slices in side wall (thank you Colorado Rockies)
  • Steering knuckle touching the passenger tire sidewall
  • Rear Radius arms bushings cracked and worn

Well, SHOCKED and DISMAYED… especially because my new tires are now garbage 😦 also was not expecting the thousands of dollars that needed to be spent.  Est. bill with this was approx 2 – 3 thousand.


So my Rover training kicked in… I can do this.  😀

I ordered the bushings from LR Parts in the UK, 8 Euro per bushing, not too bad and shipping was 25.00 CDN.  So good start.  Parts arrived… well looks like I messed up the order or they did… either way didn’t have the right parts.  😦  Off to the computer again… ordered the correct bushings.

But I had already removed the radius arms, so… off the shop to have the bushings I did have, pressed in – **trouble ahead**.  The bushings were ‘difficult’ to press out according to the shop, 200.00 to have 4 bushings pressed out – HOLLY COW!!  And I have 2 more to do when the new ones arrive…. eek!

Next issue… the steering knuckle on passengers side.


So it with some discussion on the forums (love the Rover community, lots of great ppl with experience / knowledge they are willing to share)… the consensus is that the knuckle is bent.  SO in order to pass the safety I have to fix this – first choice is to use wheel adapters.  Which I happen to have.  BUT these adapters were cheap and ‘wobble’ at medium speed (not happy). Next thought… tires are too wide – on to get new tires.  1400.00 later… tadda! new tires on aaaannnnddd


better – sorta AND I lost 1″ of tire height 😦  BUT still not right.  Now with some more discussion with Lincoln from Albuquerque, the thought is the knuckle must be out of whack…. I’m going to have to get some quotes for the labor to replace the knuckle. BUT I have the part (thank you Ebay) and only 60.00 with shipping.


I’ll keep more information coming as the saga continues….

Made it to Kingston…

So after the some 1500 mile trip from Colorado to our new home in Kingston, Ontario… we are slowing settling in.  The Rover was a champ, had some minor issues, but we’ll get to those.  Over all super happy with the move.

So you may be wondering what the ‘minor’ issue was, well I had the crew at Pikes Peak Rovers change my pinion seal on the rear diff and I replaced the upstream O2 sensors.  Well both of those jobs didn’t go as planned – pinion seal leaked after the first 500 miles, and the NGK sensors were garbage (note to self, only use Bosch).  So the outcome was truck ran rough and threw codes… as well as getting a free under coating (silver lining is that the undercoating is necessary in Ontario 😉 ).

Couple other points… man the Rover gets TERRIBLE mileage!  This may be partly my fault for all the accessories I’ve added but 13.8 mpg is not super  AND  here in Canada at 1.36 a liter WOW!!  Gonna have to plan my drives.

Super happy to be back in Canada and looking forward to the new adventures.

Moving – off to Kingston, Ontario

So, after 4 wonderful years in Colorado it is time to move back home. Gonna miss the Rockies and all its glorious beauty. BUT welcome the nice scenery of Ontario and the great lakes. Already been out MTBing and there is always an adventure near by (well, not as near by OR adventurous as Colorado admittedly…).

The trip was some 1700 miles of family adventures :).  The Rover despite the horrible mileage and the noisy safari rack, was cooperative.  There was only one issue… had the Rover looked at by Pikes Peak Rover and the rear differential pinion seal was leaking slightly.  SO preventative maintenance – I had it ‘fixed’.

After 400 miles, gear oil everywhere… 😦  Called and chatted with Eric, might be the flange vs. the seal that was replaced.  Since the differentials were only 6 mo. old, I called Bill at GBR to address the issue.  He was quick to reply – even though he was on holidays (thanks Bill).  Again nothing to be done at the moment…  but he did run through some of the common issues that could be checked.  Long story short – oil leaked the entire 1700 miles.

Along the trip I figured I’d look to the Ottawa Land Rover group for a good Rover mechanic.  Had several replies from Facebook, what a great resource and the community is so supportive!!  I had the name of a shop/mechanic and within hours a phone call – WOW!  Adam at Diesel Rovers was great.

After only a week in Kingston, made the trek to Diesel Rover and had the repair done… and truck looked over.  Glad to say Rover is tip-top and ‘leak free’ for now.

Now to unpack and seek out the new and interesting locations.

MTB Kingston’s club house in the background with the Rover and bike posing.

Looking forward to sharing the adventures as they happen…  till then – Live your own adventure!!


Overlanding Upgrades 3rd Project – Steering

Why the steering

  • what will this mode do for the rig
  • parts, companies selected
  • I bought all the parts for this upgrade months ago 🙂 however it took me till I was moving to get it done. In the end there was not a lot gained from the upgrade… save the more sturdy parts and better bushings.
  • The Rover drives relatively the same, but I have more confidence is the strength of the drag link etc if I go off road where the rocks are big and clearance is close…
  • I chose to go with Terrafirma, as their stuff was more cost effective than some of the others, but may have given up slightly on the on build quality. But at 350.00 dollars, vs. the others (Rovertyme, Rockworks… etc) it was worth it. I would recommend that you do an assessment of your needs, as I will likely not be in the situation where I will need to worry too much about these parts.
  • I am pretty happy with he build to date… the Rover performs very well for her class and keeps up with those big fancy Jeeps 😀 – mostly. Right now the only issue I have run across is the width. The Jeeps line is wider and therefore I need to be wary of those lines… but it also frees the Rover up for picking her own line and making some of the trail obstacles slightly easier… 😀
  • Well hope this was interesting… till next project or adventure!