NFLD bike theft ruins Maine woman's trip

Here's Nelson's bike, before it was stolen and stripped down.
Here's Nelson's bike, before it was stolen and stripped down.

A Maine woman has to be thinking that, maybe, Canada isn’t so friendly after all.

Molly Nelson, a gutsy 47-year-old two weeks into a six-week tour of the Maritimes, Quebec, and Newfoundland and Labrador was in St. John’s, Newfoundland, when a thief took off with her Yamaha TW200.

Yes, you read that right. Someone was bold enough to go on a trip like this on a TW200, and was rewarded by having their bike ripped off. You could sort of partially blame Nelson for the theft because she left the keys in the ignition, but she says she leaves the keys in the machine all the time in Maine, and she expected Canadians to be just as honest.

The story has a half-happy ending, though. According to the Telegram newspaper, Nelson got her bike back, but not her gear. After she reported the theft to police and appeared on local television and radio asking the public for help recovering her machine, the bike turned up, stripped of its plates, luggage, and accessories, chained to a local man’s front fence.

The man denied having anything to do with the theft, and police said they didn’t have enough probable cause to search his residence for her stuff, even though Nelson says she’s sure he has it.

That means Nelson’s trip is off – she can’t do Labrador without being properly equipped. She’s sorting out the issues to get her bike back on the road, and she still thinks she should be able to tour Newfoundland, but for now, the trip she saved up for over two years has turned into a mess.


  1. I’m glad to hear that she got her bike back and will be able to move on with the help of the generous locals. I can think of worse places for this to have happened in.

    Kudos to for raising cash for her! You guys rock the rock! 🙂

  2. she is being taken care of, nl hospitality style.  im happy to say a bunch of members on my site have gotten together to get her geared up, repaired, and even threw in for some gas funds…pretty much everythning to get her back in shape to continue her trip.  she is even back on for riding the trailway and heading to labrador. 

  3. Gawd ..
    Is there no end to the horror of trying to bike across Newfoundland !
    Two attempts have both ended Orribly CMG.
    Is that rock a bottomless pit of disappointment ?
    Is there anyone here brave enough to chance a 3rd attempt ?

  4. Not smart leaving the keys in any unattended vehicle anytime! And the comment, “even though Nelson says she knows he has it…” There’s more going on here than we know about!

Join the conversation!