Month: October 2011

Skyline Drive … or Not ???

We set out today to take the Skyline Drive through Shenandoah National Park. After driving 2 hours, we reached the park entrance, and were told the Park was CLOSED due to the freakishly early October snow storm!!! Holding back tears of disappointment – we’d planned this since last year, we thanked the nice lady Park Ranger, and went in search of another route to Charlottesville, Virginia. We drove on, convincing ourselves there was always next year.

After driving through the countryside, we came upon another entrance to Skyline Drive. Lou said, “what the heck,” and turned in. Yay!!!! They had opened the southern part of the drive about 30 minutes before. So, we got to do the bottom half. While we missed peak foliage, it was still beautiful with snow on the ground – and it wasn’t crowded. We even saw a couple of deer grazing by the side of the road.

Here are some of today’s photographs. Internet connection at our B&B is terrible, so I won’t be able to give you the history of Skyline Drive (I’m sure you’re disappointed!). Monticello is on the agenda tomorrow.

Gettysburg in the Snow

We had set today aside to spend visiting Gettysburg for a more in depth look than we had back in June.  Even though yesterday’s snow storm caused some of the roads on the Battlefield Tour to be closed, we had a good visit.  The Visitor’s Center and Museum is very well done and it’s easy to spend a couple hours seeing just part of it.

Tomorrow we head to Shenandoah National Park and will do the Skyline Drive, hoping to see more fall colors and even some wildlife.

Photos from today:

What’s All That White Stuff??? *&%#@*

This photo is from our drive yesterday through New Hampshire, and into Connecticut.  We never did see a Moose.

We had a light dusting of snow, but it was nice and sunny – a pleasant drive.  That was yesterday – Friday.  Today was a different story.

As we passed this ski resort, Lou made the comment, “you wouldn’t want to miss the turn at the bottom of the trail …”

We spent the night in Waterbury, Connecticut, and headed out this morning at about 9am – it was cold, but not snowing.

It was clear, but slightly overcast as we passed through Poughkeepsie, NY.

After crossing the Pennsylvania border, we started to see these “Storm Warning Signs”

They weren’t kidding … it started to snow heavily.  The temperature was showing 32 (F) outside the car, and then it dropped to 30.

Snow plows were out, and most people were driving slowly – with the exception of the occasional wild Canadian (or New Yorker, or name any other state – we saw it today).  The road was okay as long as it was straight, and you didn’t try to zip across the slush – we probably averaged 30mph for several hours.  Here’s a photo of one of the jack-knifed trucks we saw – along with numerous cars  spun out into the median and sides of the road:

This is about the time we started the conversation about how to make sure we were in All Wheel Drive, or 4-Wheel Drive, when we remembered the Toyota is only front wheel drive.  Oops, that’s right – last snow storm we were in we had a rental SUV – with 4-wheel drive!

We thought we were almost out of it, when traffic came to a standstill for almost 30 minutes.  Here’s the culprit – a tree down on the interstate.  We later heard on the news that downed trees were a real issue because they still had their leaves, and this snow was wet and heavy.

It snowed heavily all the way into Gettysburg, and our closest call came when a car spun out in front of us on the entrance ramp to the Turnpike.  But, Lou remained calm and got us through the day safe and sound.  We’re scheduled to stay in Gettysburg tomorrow, and things look better for later in the week, so we’ll watch closely and modify our travel plans if need be.  (My brother did point out that the objective of being a Snowbird is to get South BEFORE the snow hits!)

Made it to Connecticut

A leisurely drive today from New Hampshire to Connecticut.  Saw a fair amount of snow on the ground.

Here are a few more photos of the Grand View Mountain Resort – we’re back to Hampton Inns for the next few nights.

Goodbye to Camden

We had a nice dinner with Emily & Ben last nite, and headed out this morning on our journey to Florida. First stop was the L.L.Bean store in Freeport … replacing basics that we wore out over the summer (every one of my tops has at least one spot on it!!! You’d think I was a messy eater.).

Finally – we saw some fall colors. Rumor has it that Hurricane/Almost Storm Irene wreaked havoc with the trees in New England, but we did see some good color on our drive today. We left Freeport (which is about an hour and a half from Camden), and drove for a few hours to Whitefield New Hampshire. Here are some photos from the trip (click to see the gallery):

And, just a couple from later this afternoon. We’re staying at the Mountain View Grand Resort – same place we spent a night on the way up.