It was a little chilly last night when the sun went down and the moon came up, but good for sleeping. We seem to wake up naturally around 7:00 most days and sleeping until 8:00 is “sleeping in” for us. We had an easy departure because there was not much to do to get ready to leave. We stopped for gas right outside the campground and were on the road at 9:30. Auggie was ready to go.
Are we there yet?
It would be a little longer drive today of 203 miles with lots of wind and hills.
We had a cross-breeze, so we had a more “sporty” drive, but definitely more scenic. We entered New York around 10:00 and headed east towards the 1st of the Finger Lakes–Chautaugua and the bridge that crosses it.
Once we crossed the bridge, we were driving on a scenic section of I-86 from the lake to the Allegany State Park and the Allegany Indian Reservation. The hills and wind would do a number on our gas mileage today.
New York has quite a few of these areas along this highway.
The highway followed the northern boundary of the Allegany State Park, crossing over the Allegany Reservoir and River.
There was no evidence that we were driving through the Allegany Indian Reservation other than these highway signs with English names and their Indian translation on them.
Then, in the valley, this appeared. It was the Seneca Allegany Casino in the middle of nowhere.
We crossed the Allegany River multiple times as the highway criss-crossed through the valley.
Soon the highway climbed out of the valley and we rode on top of the bluffs for quite awhile.
Over the hills and through the hollows we went. Some of the unusual things we encountered on our drive were the Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz Memorial Bridge and the Zippo Lighter Museum. We were listening to more of our book-on-tape and were already halfway through it. The trees on the hillsides deflected a lot of the the wind, but we felt it when we hit some of the open, exposed areas. After lunch on the road, we finally approached the Finger Lakes Region.
The Finger Lakes are a region in western New York State. The ares is named for its series of 11 long, thin, glacial lakes and is also known for its wineries. The surrounding area is marked by high gorges and waterfalls. The lakes are halfway between Niagara Falls and New York City. We got off the Interstate and took Highway 414. At the bottom of the exit ramp was the entrance to the Corning Glass Museum. It was a busy place! I guess we’ll save that for another trip. Following highway 414, we cut through the countryside through small towns towards Watkins Glen.
Little did we know that we would have a 7% grade down a hill into town.
From the top of the hill we got a glimpse of Seneca Lake. There were lots of boats on the lake today–especially sailboats making the most of the wind.
We had temps in the low 70’s all day, but as we neared Watkins Glen, the thermometer reached 80. Down, down, down we went–stopping at the stoplight in town at the bottom of the hill. We had to drive through town to get to our campground and being a Saturday, the traffic was crazy! Where were all these people going? It wasn’t much fun pulling the trailer through town.
Watkins Glen State Park is located right in the center of town and is on our list of places to see.
We reached our campground–Clute Memorial Park Campground at 1:30. The campsites are spacious and grassy where we are located. Other sites are a little more cramped.
The campground is situated in the center of town on the southern shore of Lake Seneca across from the Warren W. Clute Memorial Park.
After checking in and setting up, we took site A3 and relaxed a little after the drive.
Then Bob, Auggie, and I took a walk across the street to the park. The park has a nice beach, although the office suggested that we not go swimming due to the flooding they had last week causing poor water quality. Boating was also discouraged due to the debris that ended up in the lake.
Auggie enjoyed our little walk–sniffing and rooting around in this tree to his heart’s content. He sticks his nose into any open crevice he can find.
He finally sat down and took a rest from all the activity. We sat and watched all the boat activity on the lake. It was a beautiful day to be out on the water.
Back at the camper, Auggie got a bath and haircut. I sat outside for awhile watching the campers come and go. We watched the Breeder’s Cup Classic at Saratoga Racetrack in NY on TV before dinner. Bob grilled chicken and after dinner the three of us took a walk around the campground to check it out. There are a lot of people here this weekend. We are spending 3 nights here because we have a lot of sightseeing to do. We will get an early start tomorrow so we can make the most of our time here.