We decided that we wouldn’t travel too far today as we were getting tired, and figured an early stop and a couple of days in a park would be just the ticket. We started out by 9:30 and decided to drive through Woodstock to see if it was as pretty as they say. It really is a beautiful little town, with a number of Bed and Breakfast’s in great looking older buildings. Unfortunately there was no place to park the 46 feet of truck and trailer anywhere in the town so we drove through.
At the end of the town there was a barricade across the road telling us that State Route 4 was closed and we couldn’t go any further west. We thought it would have been nice if they’d told us earlier, but we turned around and headed back the way we came. At least it gave us a chance to see Woodstock again.
We thought we’d look for a filling station and re-assess our plans. By the time we found one that had diesel, we had travelled back to just beyond where we started and pulled in. As I was filling up, I noticed a large illuminated sign announcing that route 4 was closed. Too bad it wasn’t 100 yards further down the road and we’d have been able to see it as we left the RV park.
We again took off south, and after ‘talking’ our way past the first access ramp, causing us to travel another 20 miles out of the way, we finally accessed the Interstate figuring we’d take any one of the next 3 East-West routes that would take us to Bennington Vt. This is where we wanted to stop for lunch and possibly visit their museum which houses a large selection of Grandma Moses paintings. As we neared each of the 3 turnoff ramps, we were faced with signs announcing that the route we wished to take was closed due to storm damage. So, Bennington was off the agenda for this trip. We stopped at a rest stop and tried to determine the status of the highways in the area, but unfortunately had no cell service, so no internet……
I really don’t like driving the Interstates as there’s really nothing to see from the highway, and by the time we’d run out of options in Vermont we were driving farther south and into Massachusetts looking for another scenic route to New York. The first one we came across was also closed, so we resigned ourselves to driving almost across the state to pick up Interstate 90 from Boston which was bound to be busy. As we travelled along Sylvia found a smaller route that at least went West and we figured we’d give it a try. After missing our first exit, we turned off into Northhampton, which is the home of Smith College. We ended up driving through a charming university town full of stately old houses and buildings. We also ended up on a very narrow highway that drove up and over the Green Mountains, into the Berkshire’s and finally into the Catskills. This is all rolling hills and fairly rural except for the city of Pittsville, where we passed through a large city (also the summer home of Robin Williams) with some spectacular mansions interspersed here and there.
By early afternoon we passed into New York state, and started to proceed north-west again on Route 20 which looked like it would be a decent road to our destination. On the map we had, it looked like the road skirted the city of Albany, but it turns out that it travels right through the center of town, even passing under Empire State Plaza.
This trip through town caused us to be in the midst of several school zones and university areas, right at the end of the school day. Needless to say it was a slow trip through Albany. Once we were out of the city itself, the pace picked up, and we were back on the rural up and down highways we’d seen all afternoon. When we reached the town of Altamont, there was a big sign saying that a low bridge was ahead with clearance of 12’8”, which is too low for our 5th wheel. So, I quickly turned off onto another road, and followed it for about 30 miles before heading back in the correct direction.
By the time we got to our destination of Cooperstown, NY it was almost 6:00, about 4 hours after we thought we’d be here. We were tired and only a little bit cranky. We were at least treated with a very friendly welcome and to a fantastic sunset which made up for most of the frustrations we faced in our travels.
This area is rolling farmland with small towns every 15 miles or so, and we’ll try exploring it tomorrow. It’s also Amish country, and the office at the RV park had Amish bakery goodies for sale including great cinnamon buns. We were tempted to buy enough to feed us for dinner, but settled for 5. I think we’ll have to split the extra one, as I don’t think I can convince Sylvia I deserve it.