Watkins Glen / Corning, NY
8/4/16 to 8/6/16
Watkins Glen was a place we heard of but never visited. So we decided to check it out. It's about 250 miles from Hershey to Watkins Glen. So I figured around 4 to 5 hours. The weather was good and we were traveling around 60 mph. Everything was going well until we got close to Binghamton, NY. I don't know what kind of construction they were doing but traffic was backed up to a standstill near town. We would creep along and then stop for 15 or 20 minutes. Creep along and stop again. This went on and on until we got through the city. It added 3 hours to our trip! I even called the campground and told them I would be late and not to give our site away. We finally got to the campground around 7:00 pm.
We stayed at Pinecreek Campground in Newfield, NY. We were not too excited about this place. After the great Hershey Park Campground, this place was not very nice. We had a hard time getting in our assigned site, there was a tree right across the road which made it hard to back in. (I'm still not a pro at backing up) The showers and bathrooms were terrible. Although we have a shower in the trailer, sometimes it's nice to use the campgrounds. You can take longer showers and there's usually more water pressure. Oh well, we were here for 3 nights.
Friday 8/5/16 The next day we headed to Watkins Glen State Park. Wow, this place is nice. Within two miles, the glen's stream descends 400 feet past 200-foot cliffs, generating 19 waterfalls along its course. The gorge path winds over and under waterfalls and through the spray of Cavern Cascade. It would have been a lot better if it hasn't been so dry this year and there was more water flowing. Also, the place is crowded so it's hard to get a picture without people in it. The Gorge Trail is a 2-1/2 mile loop with 850 stairs through the gorge. You can start at the Main Entrance or the Upper Entrance. If you don't want to make the loop there's a shuttle bus that runs between both entrances. The shuttle fee is $5.00. As we started the trail there was a small group of people with a guide that gives a free narrated tour so we followed her. She talked mostly about how the glen was formed and answered any questions. She ended the tour about half way up so we continued on. We took the Gorge Trail from the Main Entrance uphill to the Upper Entrance and then went on the South Rim Trail back. This gave us a view from both inside and on top of the Gorge. All in all, it's a great place to visit. Worth seeing but I'd probably suggest seeing it in the spring (more water) or fall. (for the leaves).
Saturday 8/6/16 The next day we headed to Corning, New York. The headquarters of Fortune 500 company Corning Incorporated, formerly Corning Glass Works, a manufacturer of glass and ceramic products for industrial, scientific and technical uses, like the glass front on your iPhone. It's also home to the Corning Museum of Glass, which houses one of the world's most comprehensive collections of glass objects from antiquity to the present. Corning is only 30 miles from Watkins Glen so we decided to check it out. When I heard "Glass Museum" I wasn't too excited, thinking I would be walking around looking at different vases and decorative glass. But it was so much more than that. Yes, we did walk around and look at decorative glass but they also had live demos on glass making, and my favorite part, The Innovation Center. This is where they show how glass changed the world. As in sheet glass for skyscrapers, automobile windshield glass, glass for the Hubble Telescope, fiber optics, the science behind Pyrex glass and so much more. You don't really think about how much glass is in your life until you visit this place. Going through the museum and looking at what artists can do with glass is amazing. We spent most of the day there.
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