Sunday 18 June
Pat's parents are staying three weeks with us and we decided to go down to the States for a few days in our new Toyota. What with getting everybody ready we didn't leave until 11 o'clock but managed to make Morrisburg and the Saint Lawrence by lunch time. We had a snack by the side of the river. We crossed into the USA at Ogdensburg and then made out via Canton and Colton to Tupper Lake. Canton seems a very pleasant place - full of old houses built in a distinctive style. Past St. Lawrence University. The drive through the Adirondacks was present if not a little boring. Found quite a reasonable cabin and ate at Roy's restaurant where the service was slow and food excellent. Had a little drive around part of Long Lake.
Monday 19 June
Up early and after breakfast at Roy's we went on to Saranac Lake and Lake Placid to High Falls Gorge which we visited. The Ausable River falls through a series of granite and drops over three waterfalls for a total of 700 feet. There are two steel bridges and for part of the way the process is secured to the cliff face. Had a picnic lunch which we had previously purchased at Saranac Lake.
After lunch which we shared with the chipmunks we continued to Keesville where we visited Ausable chasm where the Ausable River flows through sandstone cliffs. Again very spectacular but unfortunately the boat ride part was not operating because of high water.
Spent the night in a pleasant motel at Keeseville. Good "Dome" restaurant overlooking the River. Went for a drive in the evening.
Tuesday 20 June
Up very early this morning so as to be at Port Kent in time to catch the 08. 00 ferry to Burlington. We made it with about 25 minutes to spare. The boat was the Champlain. Paul wasn't too happy although he brightened up when I took him to see the captain "Salty" turning the heel.
Drove right out of Burlington and took the old road through Montpelier (where I glanced at the Montpelier and Barre Railway shops) and Berre (where I saw a M & B Loco) to the Rock of Ages Granite Quarry. We had lunch at the picnic table by the visitor centre and had a little ride into the quarry which is supposed to be one of the largest granite quarries in the world. There is a locomotive (steam) on display. The diesel loco that runs into the Quarry is an old GE 44 tonner built in 1948.
From Barre we took the road through Marshfield to St. Johnsbury which is another pleasant town with big wide streets (although the lower town which we didn't see until the next day is a bit scruffy). Found a motel on the road leading to the north with the cabin backing onto a stream and the C. P. Line to St Johnsbury just over the road.
Had dinner in a very good restaurant. I had shish kabob
Wednesday 21 June
Breakfast in downtown St. Johnsbury and then a trip through a Maple Candy Factory that produces 2 tons of candy per day. Much of the maple sugar used comes from Canada. Crossed into New Hampshire and went to Bethlehem to the base station of the Mount Washington Cog Railway. The people weren't too sure when the next train would be and in view of the fact that the weather didn't look too certain we decided not to bother (cost $7.50 round-trip).
Had lunch beside a beautiful river where there was a very steep clear pool below a waterfall (I would think about 30 feet). Saw several trout.
Weather was beging to menace a bit on aour trip back through Crawford Notch and Conway to Meredith where we found a very good cabin besides Lake Winnipesaukee. We ate at Hart's turkey restaurant, one of the best meals I have ever had and extremely reasonable. We all had to leave something yet the bill was only $21.47 for the adults plus Paul's child's portion.
Thursday 22 June
Made our way towards Ruggles Mine near Grafton, not a great deal of interest except the very steep drive up to the mine itself.
Drove on through Lebanon and crossed the Connecticut River by a wooden bridge at Windsor. Finished up at Bellows Falls and Steamtown.
The collection of locomotives at Steamtown is fantastic. Some of them were in good condition and I very much enjoyed the school's "Repton"and the Tralee and Dingle 2 - 6 - 2 as well as 759 (Nickel Plate Berkshire), and the Union Pacific "Big Boy" just incredible size. Even Paul enjoyed it as he posed well against the LSWR Adams 0-4-4 T number 53.
The weather is closing in and there are likely to be problems from Hurricane Agnes. Have decided to head for Ottawa tomorrow.
Friday 23 June
Made our way up highways 93 and 89 to Burlington this morning. Very well-engineered and landscaped. When we reached Burlington the weather cleared so we decided to cross the ferry, again "Champlain", and stay another night near Saranac Lake.
However the weather became much worse as we approached Saranac Lake around 2 p.m., so we decided to head for home. Reached Ottawa at 1800 with only 2 pn breaks and the stop for Customs at Ogdensburg, from leaving Port Kent. I drove a total of 370 miles but finished up feeling surprisingly fresh.
A good trip which has enabled us to see a little of the USA.