This morning we’re leaving the lovely Oakwood in Arlington VA and making our way to Niagara Falls.
It is a long route that takes goes through Maryland. Pennsylvania and finally the length of New York state. Forecast to take about 7 hours and although still a little cold the sky is clear, Before we leave there’s on address we need to see and that is the White House. Just to the north of the Washington ‘stick’ Monument it is central and we reckon we’ll just park close and have a quick look. Last time we were here Barack Obama was still in residence, Trump only just being announced as the next President.
We were approaching in heavy weekday traffic and then stop – and out the front all lights and sirens and no movement. Creeping finally we snagged a perk a few streets away, Angus, Jemmz and McKay stalk off to see what there is to see. One correcting direction from the Secret Service and they get out front – not at Lafayette Square which is usually open but way back at H Street. Must be something happening because even this far away you can see people moving up at the house maybe 20- metres away. Still quite stunning.
Going north to start the journey there’s a couple of cryptic messages on the LED boards and then – stop. Seems the I‑70 is stopped so we’re all furiously checking Waze and Google for clues and this is a monster stoppage. Alternatives take extra hours to get off the Interstate – there may have been unorthodox U turn options – but we’re off again. This time we pass through Gettysburg and stop in to see some of the hundreds of monuments and a major cemetery to the Civil War Conflict. There were over 50 000 casualties from both sides at this location of this far ranging war so this is hallowed ground. The sky is solid grey and the wind is cuttingly cold.
But onward – the van is advising that, indeed, we’re touching freezing (that’s 32 in their money). So the snow starts and it is pretty and fleeting so we refuel and have dinner at Wendy’s in Mansfield PA. Only 3 hours to go. No problem. Of course as we decide to go in we notice a school bus with 30 teenagers in the queue in front of us.
Back on the road the snow thickens. The roads rising slowly and we’re doggedly following a truck cutting through the snow for our suddenly fragile front-wheel-drive van. It gets slower and deeper and deeper and there’s no towns. One exit sign and we quickly debate about pressing on or seeking shelter. There may be none. Agggh! Off we go.
The snow off the highway is 100-150 mm thick and offers no traction as we slide to the stop sign. GPS offers potential hotel and we found our life-saving Cohocton Valley Inn. It is run by a lady, Kim, who thankfully answers the phone and rushes out to make us cosy for the night. We are so grateful for Kim who saved our bacon tonight.
Unfortunately this means we won’t be making it to Niagara tonight, only two hours short but better safe than sorry. Thankfully our dear friend Rebekah has rung ahead to tell the Giacomo in Niagara that we’ll not be there this evening,
Since we arrived at the Inn it has been snowing solidly. We are very relieved that we are safe in our comfy Moose Flannel sheeted beds tonight. Goodnight.
Angus | Finding a hotel in Cohocton in a snowstorm
Rosie | It snowing, oh so pretty - okay, that’s enough, it can stop now.
Jemmz | The Waffle House followed closely by the White House.
McKay | The White House - seeing it up close ish.
O’Regan | The Waffle House burger.