Jellystone Park of the Finger Lakes is where we stayed. A well maintained, pretty campground with 100 sites, cabins and tent camping.
We were in Site 99 a gravel pull through with full hook-ups. The patch of grass was a little wider than normal and we had a fire ring and picnic table. The WiFi was spotty. We paid $25.00 a night with our Passport America discount.
The full moon was beautiful over the lake.
Just outside of Bath in Avoca, NY we found the Caboose Motel, which of course made us think of our son-in-law Steve. You can sleep in your own train car, they do have a regular motel as well and it is all for sale if anyone is interested.
We made a stop in Corning, NY, home of Corningware, and the Corning Museum of Glass, (bottom picture). They offer tours, demonstrations and glass making workshops.
There were a few Roadside Oddities, as well as a very cool Trompe-l'oeil painted wall. The bricks and lettering look so real, but it is just a flat wall.
The Clock Tower was built in memory of Erastus Corning, by his descendants in 1883. The town of Corning was named after him. He was a prominent businessman and politician.
The Little Joe Tower is a monument to Corning's technological innovation. It was built in 1912, representing a giant step forward in thermometer tubing production technology. By using a process called "Vertical Draw", hot glass was pulled up 196-feet by cable, creating a continuous tube. It was then cooled and cut to the length needed.
Today, thermometer tubing is done by a "Horizontal Draw" method, so Little Joe is no longer in use for glass making, but makes a nice historical piece.
The image of "Little Joe" at the top of the tower was taken from a sketch made by an itinerant painter who visited a glass factory in Pittsburgh.
The symbol has undergone a series of graphic modifications and today is a Corning trademark.
Next to the tower is a beautiful bronze sculpture of a Glass Blower.
Twain died in 1910 and the family plot in the Woodlawn Cemetery includes a memorial to Olivia, who passed away overseas. The additional graves are their children and the Langdon family.
We saw the Twain home when we visited Hartford, CT back in June.
|Death is the starlit strip between the companionship of yesterday and the reunion of tomorrow. Mark Twain
There are Waterfalls everywhere.
|L: Aunt Sarah's Falls ~~~~~ R: She-qua-ga Falls
The "She-qua-ga" waterfall is 165-feet tall and right in town. The word means "Tumbling Waters". There is a sketch of the falls in the Louvre, made around 1820 by Louis Philippe, who was later the King of France.
The Ithaca Falls, in Ithaca, NY are just a short walk from the road. The falls are 150-feet tall with a width of 175-feet. They are at the end of a small park that is in the process of being rebuilt. The trees along the river have amazing root systems. The tunnel in the bottom right picture is what is left of this areas industrial past. This was once the site of many mills and factories. In 1828 a stone dam was built just above the falls to direct water to the mills. From 1880 to 1987 the Ihaca Gun Company's factory was just south of the falls. In the late 1990's testing of the soil found high level's of lead from shotgun testing. A major lead clean-up effort took place from 2002-2004, with additional soil being removed as late as 2015. The factory was destroyed and luxury apartments are planned for the site. Not sure that is where we would want to live!
The Taughannock Falls are in the state park named for them. The park is on Cayuga Lake and offers hiking, camping, boating and swimming. The falls drop a dramatic 215-feet into a wooded gorge.
There is a trail that takes you to the base of the falls, but once again Nancy's back issues prevented us from doing that. But you have a beautiful view from the overlook at the Visitor Center.
We had two different sites during our week stay. The first two nights were in a grassy pull through with water and electric hook-ups. The sites are narrow, this one is right next to the playground. Second site was a gravel pull through with full hook-ups. Both sites had a picnic table and fire ring.
|L: first site ~~~ R: second site
The New York, Peter "Wolf" Toth Indian carving is in Dunkirk, NY. This was the 7th carving on the "Trail of Whispering Giants". His name is Ong-Gwe-Ohn-Weh. Carved in 1973 from an Elm tree, he stands 10-feet tall.
While searching out the Indian carving we came across the Dunkirk Lighthouse.
At that time the Victorian keepers house was also built. Bricks from the original keepers house formed the foundation for the new house. The square tower was built around the old tower so it would be more compatible with the keeper's house.
Also in Westfield, NY we found a statue of President Lincoln and 12-year old, Grace Beddell. While campaigning for office Lincoln received a letter from Grace that advised him to let his whiskers grow, as it would improve his personal appearance. In the letter she said "all the ladies like whiskers and they would tease their husbands to vote for you and then you would be president." Lincoln vised Westfield and Grace received a kiss and a thank you from him.
Just outside of Westfield we came across this really cool garage - now Nancy wants a garage so she can paint it like this!
Portland, NY has a bronze statue of Brad Anderson and his beloved dog Marmaduke.
Anderson was born in Jamestown, NY and created the comic strip Marmaduke in 1954 and continued to draw it until his death at age 91 in 2015. The statue was created by sculptor Don Sottile, who met with Anderson to design the sculpture. Anderson wanted it to be playful with Marmaduke interrupting his work.
|Scary Lucy ~ Artist Dave Poulin ~ 2009
Lucille Ball was born in Jamestown, NY and grew up in Celoron, NY. She lived in many places as a child including Wynadotte, MI for a short time. Both Jamestown and Celoron have memorials to her. In Celoron there are two statues, "Scary Lucy" and "Lovely Lucy", as they are called by the locals. The first one was hated so much by everyone in town, they petitioned to have it removed and have another one created. They got their second wish, both statues are in the Lucille Ball Memorial Park. You can tell which one they hated - it really doesn't even look like her.
Lovely Lucy is so much better!
|Lovely Lucy ~ Artist Carolyn Palmer ~ 2016
In Jamestown, NY there are murals as well as a museum. The mural of Lucy, Desi, Ethel and Fred is claimed to be the World's Largest I Love Lucy Mural. The image is from an episode from the show titled "California, Here we Come".
The museum not only holds memorabilia from Lucy's life but other comedians as well and they host a comedy show here.
The Lakeview Cemetery in Jamestown is where she is laid to rest. There are hearts painted on the road that lead you to the Ball family plot. The sidewalk leading up to her tombstone also has a heart on it.
One days adventure took us into Pennsylvania to see the Kinzua Dam and Kinzua Bridge State Park.
They are just outside of Warren, PA.
The Kinzua Dam was built from 1960 -1965. It is on the Allegheny River and at 1,877-feet long and 179-feet at it's highest it is one of the largest dams east of the Mississippi River.
The 339-acre Kinzua Bridge State Park is home to a 600-foot pedestrian walkway. It was made from what is left of what was once the longest and tallest railroad structure. The railway was 2,053-feet long and 301-feet high. It was partially destroyed by a tornado in 2003. You can walk out on the skywalk and also view the area from two overlooks.
|Views through the freestanding binoculars at the overlooks
As bigger locomotives and longer trains came into use these tracks needed to be sturdier. So 18-years later the iron structure was dismantled and rebuilt with steel latticework. It was quite a task. It took up to 150 men, working 10-hour shifts to complete the job in 105 days. Workers manned two 180-foot movable platforms called travelers. They were anchored at each end of the viaduct. Workers on the platforms reconstructed one tower and then moved to the next. When the teams met in the middle, the job was done.
Freight traffic stopped in 1959 and the area became a state park in 1970. From 1987 to 2002 passenger trains traveled these tracks. In June of 2002 inspections determined the structure need repairs and it was closed to all traffic including foot traffic. Repairs began in February 2003 but on July 21, 2003 an F1 tornado, with wind speeds of 73-112 miles per hour, struck the side of the viaduct. Eleven towers from the center of the bridge were torn from their concrete bases and thrown to the valley floor, where they lay today.
|The viaduct was taller than the statue of liberty -
you can build your own track!
As you can all imagine Nancy was not thrilled with walking out to the end of the skywalk. In fact she stopped about a quarter of the way and went back to solid ground. Once again her stubornness paid off and she forced herself to go all the way. Les did have to take all the pictures as there was no way she was going close to the edge!
You do have quite the view of the surrounding valley, the river and the destruction left from the tornado.
Of course there is a glass floor - who came up with this idea? Les and Mielikki were very brave and stood on it. Nancy got her feet to the edge of it while sitting down!
She did like it much better under the platform and enjoyed taking pictures there.
The park is free and the skywalk and overlooks are handicap accessible.
Once back on solid ground we enjoyed a snack from the Little Sister's Big Rig food truck. Fried corn on the cob and a hot dog.
The best part of this stop was spending a day with Trish and Carolyn. They are both Licensed Reiki Teachers from the International Center for Reiki Training where Nancy worked in Michigan. It was such a relaxing day just hanging out and catching up.
Till we meet again...
Happy Trails to You!
Tips and things we have learned along the way.
~ Communication made easier
When we pull into a new campground Nancy usually guides Les into our site. Especially when we have a back-in site. Every camper goes through this and it is always entertaining to watch, we know we are just as funny as everyone else. While we generally do a pretty good job with hand motions, it can be confusing as to what exactly the instructions are. Do you want me to go left or right? Straighten the wheels or turn them? You get the point.
There are a couple of ways to make this easier. First off you can simply use your cell phones and the driver can have theirs on hands free, of course you need cell coverage for this and some places just don't have it.
Walkie Talkies help to take the guess work out of it all and you don't need cell coverage. We do not own a pair yet but we are seriously considering it. There is a wide variety available online and in just about any store. They come in all shapes, sizes and colors and range anywhere from $40 to over $100.
There is also an App for that! Yep, you can turn your iPhone or Android phone into a Walkie Talkie, you do need to have internet access for them to work so if you are out of range that could be a problem.
For iPhones there is the free Zello App.
There are a number of other apps on Google Play, Two Way Walkie Talkie, Voxer, TiKL Touch Talk and MotoTalk are just a few.