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Published: July 18th 2013
Kerry's shortcut road
with fresh oil and chips
17 July, 2013
Kerry found a shortcut. I could stop there, but you know I won’t. Kerry studied the map before leaving Jonestown, PA, and decided to take a shortcut to get to Watkins Glen, NY. We turned off the interstate onto a pretty country road. A mile later we saw a sign “fresh oil and chips.” Okay, so they’re working on the road surface, no big deal. The next sign says 10% grade next 2 miles. Hmm. Here we go again. We wound and curved and climbed and dove through some really beautiful farm country in the Susquehanna River Valley area. The downhill grades varied from 9% to 11% and the hairpin turns go without saying. Of course for every downhill there is an equal or steeper uphill. When we finally crossed the Susquehanna River and got onto a genuine US highway, you could actually hear Kerry unclench.
We then drove north through Williamsport, PA, home of the Little League World Series. Actually that’s in South Williamsport, but we drove through that, too. It was lovely country with farms and hills and valleys, all very green. Into Corning, NY, past the Museum of Glass, to Watkins Glen State
Park. We caught a view of Seneca Lake as we were coming into town. The park is very nice, but the campsites with electricity were all taken. That’s okay, we can dry camp. We set up and went to see the gorge made by the Glen Creek and ancient glaciers with its 19 waterfalls, and, unfortunately, 880 steps. I couldn’t make it past the first 100 (if that far) and we had to turn back. I did see a couple of waterfalls, but we were both disappointed we couldn’t see more. Back at the campground, temps were in the upper 80’s and we had no A/C. By bedtime it hadn’t cooled off much, but we had windows and vents all open to catch any breeze. It was cool enough to get to sleep and eventually was quite comfortable.
Today we drove up the west side of Seneca Lake, one of New York’s Finger Lakes. There were wineries and grapevines everywhere. Now and then we’d get a glimpse of the lake, but the air was pretty hazy all day. At Seneca Falls we stopped at the Women’s Rights National Historic Site. We continued north through Oswego, where we got our
first sight of Lake Ontario. We are camped next to the Black River in Dexter, NY. The Black River is nearly black from the tannin in the water and empties in the Black River Bay and then into Lake Ontario, where it is crystal clear.
We had dinner with friends, Cindy and Alex, then went out in their boat into the river and bay and nearly to the Lake. It was so nice out, with the breeze blowing and the water spray. We came back in due to threatening looking weather. We then had a nice visit on their porch overlooking the river.
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