Project Vintage Thunder

The latest on Project Vintage Thunder, by Airstream Life magazine. Sponsored by George M Sutton RV, Reese hitch, Dometic USA, PPG Paint, Axis Products, GSM Vehicles, and Zip-Dee. Vintage Thunder is an "honest" RV refurbishment and travelogue. We tell you what really happens ...

Monday, May 30, 2005

Watkins Glen, NY

It's a beautiful day in Watkins Glen, NY. Or should I say, it's a beautiful day except during the three or four times each day when little rain showers have dropped by. Nonetheless, we have fallen in love with this area.

Watkins Glen State Park sits near the southern end of Seneca Lake, one of the eleven finger lakes in central New York. The park itself is a one mile steep climb from the center of town, but with a speed limit of just 25 MPH it was really no trouble at all pulling the Argosy. The park's central feature is a truly spectacular gorge, with over a dozen waterfalls and a 3 mile walking trail (roundtrip). The trail even goes under a waterfall at some point.

The area is loaded with things to do: wineries, little ice cream shops, antique stores, lake recreation, river fishing, and hiking. Best of all -- and for no reason we can determine -- there are absolutely no mosquitoes. Being Memorial Day weekend in the northeast, that's a minor miracle.

The other big draw of the area is Corning NY, which is anchored by the world-class Corning Museum of Glass (CMOG). Before you roll your eyes and think, "How dull," you need to know that the CMOG is a fantastic visit: part entertainment, part science museum, part hands-on workshop, part art museum. There's something for everyone. With a 5-year-old in tow, we spent four hours in CMOG and nobody in our group was ever bored.

Back at the State Park, we drew quite a bit of attention from the Memorial Day campers with our deep blue-green camper amidst the sea of white boxes. We stuck out, that's for sure, but in a nice way. Everyone was amazed at the paint job. As we towed through the park, fingers were pointed and (with the windows rolled down) we heard many passing comments, " ... never seen one of those ..", "...those Airstreams are really cool ...", and "... a lot of money ..." It's true, Vintage Thunder looks like a million bucks, but a couple that came by for a tour was amazed to find out that it cost less than their white-box SOB trailer. Now they want to go check out the nearest Airstream dealer.


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