2015 Vacation: Thursday...the hills of Pennsylvania

Big drive today, so we were up early to catch the ferry. A woman in a shop told us the big ferry leaves on the half hour, so that was our target time. The lake was much calmer today, and our passing was relatively smooth.

Today is another of those A to B days, where the interstate is used to just chew up the miles. Along the way, in Akron, we stopped at a Camping World, which, truth be told, did influence the route today. Never been to one, so it became a way point in our journey. Nice drive, stopped for gas and a bit of breakfast for the road. Amazing how tasty a McD egg mcmuffin can be when you are sitting in a car cruising along the blacktop. Egg white fever.

Camping World was interesting. Perhaps I was a tad disappointed, as I had expectations it would be a touch more on the technical parts, and a little less on the kitchen accessory knick knacks. Dale however, managed to find a very nice little tripod ottoman for use with our camp chairs...who knew such a thing even existed?

As soon as we reached Pennsylvania, the terrain seemed to change. The hills of Pennsylvania are very much that. Hills, long hills, and lots of them. Cruising along the I70 & I77 was a breeze, you do not realize just how hilly it is until you glance over the guardrail and there is no ground in sight. That's because you are on a massive bridge that is spanning either a river, or simply going from top to top of rolling hills.  We used a few of the toll roads, beautiful pieces of engineering, but at a high price. The tolls were a bit pricey, and it seemed we would only go a short distance before we were once again coralled into yet another automated toll booth. Not a soul around, just a machine, controlling the gate, demanding to be fed coins. After a few of these, we were running out of coins, and small bills. At one booth, after reading the charges per axle, I wondered if it really knew how many axles we had. How would it know, what technology existed to count axles??? Determined to find out, I shortchanged "him/her" on the axles charge. How could it know? As it dutifully tallied up the loose change tossed into its gaping mouth, there seemed a pause, then it demanded the rest. Exactly the rest. I was staring down a digital eye, glowing at me, unwavering at the challenge. Soon, the human relented and deposited the extra requested, gate opened, no hard feelings.

Once on the secondary roads up to Ohiopyle SP the rolling hills made their presence known. Big long hills, up then down. Had to use the automatic transmission in manual mode, better for me to control the engine rpm, rather than the auto hunting for gears all the time. I also used the engine braking more often, remembering what Andy had said during his presentation a couple of days ago. Really helped me handle the downhill well.

The countryside is spectacular, lush rolling green...not sure how many times I have used the word "rolling", I suspect there may be many more. The park is well off the beaten trail, deep into the countryside. It is very dense with foilage, tons of trees, lots of canopy. Our campsite is nice, a bit too angled down for our taste, but we managed to find a good spot and set up. Because of the downward slope of the ground, the trailer tongue is quite high, not our favorite position, as it makes it a little shaky inside. The front stabilizer jacks are a huge help, and I cranked them a little extra tight to keep things stable.  Also the Anderson Leveler from Emily worked really well on the uneven site.

Went for a quick shower, and was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the comfort station. I generally judge a campsite somewhat on how good the stations are, which I think can be a good indicator. These were quite nice, clean, with great showers. Top marks from me. Pretty tired after the drive, and we hit the pit real early. Tomorrow is the long awaited tour of Falling Water. We both can't wait.


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