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Thread: STL-Montreal

  1. #1

    Default STL-Montreal

    End of day 3 in Apalachin, NY (a little west of Binghamton). Just back to the hotel from one of the best ice cream stands I have ever been to - the Big Dipper, on a frontage road to the Southern Tier Expressway, about half a mile from the Apalachin Exit. Very good ice cream at very good prices. Obviously very popular with the locals. I highly recommend a stop if you happen to be traveling through on the Highway).

    Day 1 was a speed sot, starting after lunch, from St. Louis to a stop near Dayton. Just a straight shot on I-70. Highlight: Collapsing into bed after finishing the drive.

    Day 2 was to Erie, PA with stops at Cuyahoga Valley NP (thanks for the pointer Buck!) - just a couple quick walks that a four-year-old could handle, along with a picnic lunch. We then stopped at Presque Isle after getting lost taking the "scenic" route through Erie. That's three of the five Great Lake I have waded in now. (only Huron and Ontario to go). Highlight: Walk to and picnic lunch at Brandywine Falls.

    Day 3 was I-86 through Southern NY, with a detour to Ithaca and Taughannock Falls - walked the latter twice as daughter had fallen asleep in the car. My wife wanted a bit of a break and stayed with her in the car (with doors open) while i took the walk to the Falls. Then we flipped roles, but daughter woke up in 5 minutes, so we followed along and caught up to her at the Falls proper. Very pretty, as there had been rain the last few nights - supposedly it is usually pretty anemic in the Summer. The main walk is a very easy walk up a pretty gorge, probably a bit less than a mile. Highlight: (Tie). Taughannock falls and Big Dipper Ice Cream stand.

    Ithaca seemed a nice enough college town, but the town itself was overshadowed for me by the trip to the falls.

    Looking to do Cooperstown tomorrow and end in Southern VT - our first time to NE aside from a trip to Boston by plane to visit a friend.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Nice to hear from you!


    Glad the trip is off to a nice start and thanks for checking in!


  3. #3

    Default Day 4 - Cooperstown and Brattleboro


    Thanks for the encouragement. I hope this will be of interest to someone at some point.

    Anyway, I wrote a long report, but my computer ate it. Short version:

    Cooperstown: if you are even a casual fan of the game, then, by all means go. It is worth it. The artifacts just bring those stories and memories alive again.


    1) The Top of the Hill Grill has some of the best pulled pork I have ever eaten. And I have eaten, as my gut can attest, more than my fair share. Stop here. Do not be distracted by the large menu. Go straight to the barbecue.

    2) Brattleboro has a sort of pleasant, youthful, energetic buzz. It served to me as an interesting contrast to Ithaca. Of the two, based on way too short an experience in each case, I would take Brattleboro hands down. I just feel comfortable here. I have high hopes for the next couple of days in Vermont.

    Observation: I found myself a bit annoyed at the NY practice of numbering exits sequentially rather than by mile marker. I thought the mile-marker practice was universal in the U.S. - it is certainly more convenient, IMHO. I seem to recall from my yoputh that NV used to use a sequential exit numbering system, but that it was changed many years ago.

    Anyway, thanks for letting me ramble,


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    The Top of the Hill Grill has some of the best pulled pork I have ever eaten.
    Better than Super Smokers?

  5. #5


    It distresses me to say so, but it was at least as good as Super Smokers or Pappy's Smokehouse. The former pitmaster of Super Smokers left a couple years back to open up Pappy's in Midtown St. Louis, which, unfortunately for my waistline, is within walking distance of my place of employment.

  6. #6


    My God, it all went so quickly. Vermont to Montreal to Niagara Falls, and now in our last stop before getting back home to St Louis. Things I have learned this trip:

    1. The 500 mile/day guideline is a good, good idea. I haven't pushed beyond it, and it has helped tremendously.

    2. That being said, I still packed too much into this trip. Stl-Vermont and back would have been a great two week trip.

    3. I love Vermont. We *are* going back in the next few years.

    4. I love Montreal. This was my second time there and we got out of the Old Town/Downtown scene. We got to the Plateau for a bit (will be back for more next trip) and spent an afternoon/evening in Outremont (my new favorite neighborhood). Next time, I would like to get to Westmount a bit too (maybe base out of there next time if I can find something close enough to the Metro).

    5. I do not like Niagara Falls. Oh, the falls themselves are wonderful, but the kitsch of Clifton Hill and the marketing of almost everything just annoy me to no end. Next time I am passing through the area, I will stop by to see th e Falls, maybe catch a ride on the Maid of the Mist, and get out of town - may take a look at Niagara-on-the=Lake next time.

    6. Four-year-olds are adaptable. I worried about how she would handle a two-week trip, but she was just fine. It makes me feel better about our (still-nebulously-) planned six- to eight-week trip to France next Summer.

    7. Don't overplan. My best memories of this trip, at this point, were just times when I wandered, soaking in the atmosphere of a place: wandering through Outremont, sipping a coffee and looking at Niagara Falls, or wandering through Brattleboro or browsing a bookstore in Montpelier.

    I am already making notes for our next couple of trips up this way.


  7. Default

    Thanks for the tip about the Big Dipper ice cream. We'll be passing that way on our road trip starting October 1, just about the right time of day for ice cream. It's just little nuggets of information like this that makes reading all the trip reports worthwhile.

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