Just got back from a 2 week trip through NY state and since I had so much helpful advice in planning this trip from the forums last year, I thought I would pass along the results of our trip in hopes that it could help others in planning travel to NY..
We had two families in our group, mine and my brother in laws. We have the rig below and my BIL has a 26ft TT and 1500 series Dodge pickup.
In general our route was Lansing MI ---> Niagara Falls Canada ---> Cooperstown NY ---> Lake George NY ---> Geneva NY (Finger lakes) and back home.
I will got through each stop and each leg of travel, you can glean what you wish.
We started Friday evening the 21st traveling 45 miles to meet my BIL's family in Lansing. Had dinner at the Flying J on the way. Made some final trips preparations that evening and left for Niagara 8am Saturday the 22nd. 319 mile trip to http://www.riversideparkcampgrd.com/ . We crossed into Canada at Port Huron MI. quickly with no issues.
Riverside Park is on the Niagara Falls Parkway about 9 miles from the falls. Right on a bike path that runs from the falls to Fort Erie. The park reminded me of a late 60s motor lodge. They had a small 10 room motel & maybe 60 campsites. There were maybe 30 or so seasonal sites and it seemed that the seasonal folks knew each other well. Everyone was very friendly. We had one of the few full hook up sites. The sites by them self were ok, little tight and awkward to get into, but the highlight was that the backed up to two huge maple trees where our fire ring was. We were also very close to a huge willow tree that the kids spent a great deal of time climbing, and also a soccer field to play in. The park looked a little dated, but was very clean and in great condition.
We spent a day at the falls, and took the trip on the Maid of the Mist and also went on the Journey Behind the Falls. We thought both were well worth the fees they charged. Having been on the US and Canada side of the falls, I would agree the view is better from the Canada side. My daughter and I had just been on the US side for a mission trip in June, and had visited Goat Island and the American side of the falls, so we did not go there this time. We found the balance of the Canadian side (especially the downtown area) to be very expensive. Seemed like you were walking through an over-priced carnival. One highlight was a small place called Brick City, which was a large Lego exhibit. Cost about $6 to get in and one of the features was a 10ft long model of the Golden Gate bridge and a similar sized model of the Falls.
Another highlight of the Canada side was a diner on Lundy's Lane called The Flying Saucer restaurant. The kitchen was very slow the night we were there, but the food was great and the had a menu with endless choices.
We spent another day at http://www.marinelandcanada.com/ . This was part marine park , part amusement park. We went to two of the three shows and rode most of the rides. They actually have the largest steel roller coaster in the world (length I think). If you have kids, I would highly recommend going there.
On Tuesday my wife, kids and I went to visit some friends we had made on the US side during our mission trip in June. We crossed at the Rainbow bridge in both directions with no issues. We also made a stop at The Twist of the Mist, which is an ice cream stand on the US side. Great stuff, give it a try.
We had some rain in the evenings and a little during the day, but nothing that altered our plans.
We left Wednesday morning for a 250 mile trip to Cooperstown. We took the Niagara Parkway to Fort Erie and crossed at the Peace bridge quickly with no issues. Trip was uneventful as we were on I-90 most of the way. Yahoo maps did make us run some side streets through Buffalo. We got off the Thruway at exit 30 and had a 25 mile trip of hilly 2 lane the rest of the way into http://www.cooperstowncamping.com/ .
This campground is under new ownership by some really nice folks who gave up the rush of California living to own a campground. They are doing a great deal of work to the place. The sites are pretty good sized and are grouped in clusters with separation between them. We were on two sites in a group of 3. The third was a seasonal. The odd thing was these were pull-in sites. You pulled into them and sill had enough room to get your TV unhooked, and out of the way.
The sites were a little muddy, but this area is part of that which got hit with flooding late June. The CG is on NY-31 about a mile south of NY-10. If you go there, be sure to stop at the diner at the corner of 31 &10. Besides having great food, they had really good pie. I think the name was K&C's or something like that.
It was a 10 mile drive down Rt-10 into Cooperstown. We went past Glimmer Glass State park. It looked very nice, but we did not have time to go there. We spent a day at Cooperstown doing the Hall of Fame and walking the shops. If you like Baseball, you have to go there at least once. One store had a sign in the window that said "We have the baseball cards your mom gave away".. Parking in Cooperstown was not easy. When you come in from the east side of town like we did you see a sign for parking information, but never find such information. We ended up parking in a private lot for the day about 5 blocks from the Hall for $15, We found out the next day that there is free parking with a shuttle about 2 miles south of town on Rt-28. We were there the Thursday before the induction, so that added to the craziness.
On another day we stopped at http://www.flycreekcidermill.com/. Last mill left on Fly Creek. Had a lot of good stuff to eat and great cider. The press is dual powered by the water turbine and also a 1924 Waterloo Boy engine that was purchased new by the owners. The only press cider in Sept-Dec, but you can tour the equipment and watch a video about how it all works. They have really good fudge too.
We did not get a chance to go to Howe Caverns, but would plan on going there, if I went back to that area.
We left Saturday morning for the 118 mile trip to http://www.lakegeorgeescape.com/main.htm .
Very fun trip as it was all 2 lane back roads, except for the last 30 miles up I-87. Once again yahoo maps ran us through some tight city streets, but it was a great drive.
Lake George Escape is an amazing park. Except for some hassle getting in the drive, during a rush, everything was great. They had free putt putt for the kids (course is not great and only 9 holes, but the price was right). The park is huge, something like 700 sites. We were on full hook up sites #84 & 86 that on there own were not that great, but they backed up to the athletic field so we had some extra room to the rear. Once again we had some large pine trees that kept the kids busy climbing.
We took the hour long trip that the CG offered. It cost $7 and was a bunch of fun.
We also took a short rafting trip on the Sacandaga River through this company http://www.wildwaters.net/ . We were only on the river a little over an hour, but it was a lot of fun and they allowed kids as young as 5 years old. We bought the discount coupons at the CG.
We also took a hour long cruise on Lake George through this company http://www.lakegeorgesteamboat.com/ . We bought discount coupons at the CG. We rode on the steamboat Minne-Ha-Ha and it was very fun. They also offered a 4 1/2 hour trip that toured the entire lake and lunch/dinner cruises.
We also took the trip up Prospect Mountain http://www.ohwy.com/ny/p/prmtveme.htm which offered some great views.
We spent some time walking downtown Lake George and played some mini-golf to fill in the blanks.
We had rain one evening, but it did not alter any of our plans. We left Wednesday morning for the 220 mile trip to http://www.campingfriend.com/CheerfulValleyCampground/ / Mostly freeway here, except for cutting the corner from Saratoga Springs to Johnstown. While on the Thruway we went through some rain that would have made Noah proud.
Cheerful Valley is probably the prettiest CG I have ever seen with regard to the piece of property it sits on. I have never seen a CG where the grass was so thick and lush. We had two huge lots on a corner, that allowed us to be awning to awning in a large V.. We spent one day at http://www.roselandwaterpark.com/ . we had beautiful weather and it was very fun. We stopped at a couple of wineries on our way back to camp.
One day we drove the back roads to Ithaca and back. Went down the Eastern side of Seneca Lake and back up the West side of Cayuga Lake. We ate lunch at Joe's Restaurant in Ithaca, very good food. We also waked through the shops in downtown Ithaca, not worth the time in my view, especially when you have shops with stuff you don't want the kids to see.
On the way to Ithaca we stopped and spent a couple of hours at http://www.taughannock.com/. We started at the scenic lookout and also hiked up the trail to the falls. We played in the river instead of walking the trail, kids had a blast. We stopped at several wineries on the way back from Ithaca as well.
Also spent some time at the http://www.premiumoutlets.com/outlets/outlet.asp?id=9 . Probably one of the nicest outlet malls I have been to.
We left Saturday morning for the 497 mile trip home. Took about 11 hours. Entry into Canada took about 20 minutes at the Lewiston Bridge. Entry into the US at Sarnia took about an hour, with a 20 minute wait at the Canadian toll gate and the balance at US customs. All in all, we never talked to a border guard for more than 5 minutes, mostly just waited our turn. Only once, coming back into the Us the last time did they actually look at our TV and look in our TT.
Diesel fuel totaled about $590 US for the entire trip, and that included about 1440 miles of towing. Not sure how many miles we drove outside of towing. I was lucky to only have to get fuel once in Canada. It was sky high. I was 30 miles short of avoiding it all together. Also spent about $586 on CG fees.
The truck did great. The Cummins made mincemeat of the hills going up and the Jake Brake tamed them coming down. Also amazingly enough, we were able to safely make the trip with both of our TTs riding on properly inflated Carlisle tires and using normal WD hitches with friction sway bars.
I would post photos, but we took about 350 of them.. If you have any specific questions about the trip, send me a PM.
we were at Cooperstown the same day as you! We were finishing our 2 week trip, we had been to the Adirondacks, VT, NH, and ME, and this was our last stop. I was completely frustrated by the lack of information on parking in Cooperstown. You'd think that with an attraction that big, you'd have well placed signs as you come in to town letting folks know that limited, on-street parking is all that's available, and then some direction as to other options. It wasn't until we were leaving for the day that I saw that the First Baptist Church on Elm St. had parking all day for $5.... live and learn, but I think Cooperstown and the Hall of Fame could partner to make this an easier trip for folks.
We liked the Hall of Fame, but I need to go back. I had to leave twice to move my car... oh well. We camped at the Unadilla KOA down near I88, just because it was an easier exit toward home for us. We really liked this campground, btw. Well managed.
2011 Honda Pilot
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Eat at Mary's Hot Tamales - Magnolia Ave, Knoxville, TN!
We tried the church too, but it was full already when we got there..
I agree, they make it a little difficult..
As for "Pete Rose - 4256 steroid free hits and still not in the Hall of Fame!" I am a big fan of his. I made comment to my nephew when looking at some Rose stuff in one of the stores, that even though they wouldn't let him in the Hall of Fame, his name is all over the place...
As for "Pete Rose - 4256 steroid free hits and still not in the Hall of Fame!"
I have a shirt with this on it, and I wore it to the Hall of Fame, got my picture with it next to the "All Time Hit Leaders" board and "All Time Games Played" board, on both of which he's #1. I got a few comments on my shirt, most folks seem to think that the problem is more personal between Rose and Selig, and that nothing will change until Selig is out, which could be true. I just hope he gets in before he dies. And while they're at it, let Shoeless Joe in. good grief.