Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Three adventures in three days!

This past weekend saw three adventures and several firsts for me. One of the adventures was short, was one long, and one was medium sized. I'll share the story of each below. 

On Saturday, my brother and I set out for the Plattekill service station on the New York State Thruway, to visit the Roy Rogers restaurant for the final time, since it's closing next week. It has become a tradition for us that every adventure that ends up on the west side of the Hudson River ends with lunch or dinner there. 

Along the way, however, we got caught in a brief but intense thunderstorm, with pouring rain and sun at the same time. 

I recorded the entire storm, minus the first few seconds it took me to get the camera on. 
The rest of the trip was mostly dry, a couple sprinkles here and there. 
Unfortunately they are going to tear down the entire building and start fresh, but it won't have any good food. That's actually a problem for me as when we travel long distances I have to eat on the road due to my medicine schedule, and I had relied on the food in the service stations. Not sure yet how I will overcome that hurdle. All of the stations on the NYS Thruway are going to have this happen, and I'm NOT happy about it at all. 

I took some pictures of the inside of the building too. 
I don't know if the historical markers will remain but I hope so. I have them all photo documented at least. Every station except Ramapo and I think one out by the Pennsylvania line in the northern tier have one. 
I've traveled from Maine to Illinois and New York has...had...the best rest areas of any state. I hope the new ones are better than the concepts shown, I know the food options will be significantly worse. 
On the way home, you can see the sky was also very foreboding. What may not show is that the river had two very different looks to it. I don't know why, but I wonder if that's where the water switches between salt water and fresh water. The area where that happens changes on a daily basis but it's usually further south than Poughkeepsie. 

Driving down Route 9 we got caught in another storm, this one longer. 
For most people, this is not good, but I LOVE riding in the rain. And it doesn't happen all that often, so this was a lot of fun for me. 
I really like this shot...my camera has the functionality to take pictures while also taking a video but I rarely use it. This is the only one I took during either video and it's one of my favorite photos of the day, go figure. I need to use that feature more often. 
The storm ended pretty quickly, but it was raining on and off the rest of the night. I went to bed Saturday night listening to thunder and rain on my window. 

Sunday morning was planned to be an actual adventure- Saturday was really just an eventful food run - but it turned out being more interesting than I expected. 
More clouds, but it was mostly dry. Note the clouds hanging low on the mountain. 
Sun rays coming through always looks good
the IMSA Sports Car series raced at Lime Rock Park in Connecticut on Saturday, which is actually only about an hour and a half away from home. On Sunday I saw 4 of their haulers headed home, this is the best picture I got however.
We got off I-84 and onto 684, which was new territory for me. 684 actually ends in Brewster, just beyond where we got off.
This is in Brewster, NY, en route to the adventure
A brief glimpse of Peach Lake
Now in North Salem NY, the northernmost town in Westchester County, which I had never visited before. 
And here's our destination, Balanced Rock. 
It's a big rock on top of little rocks.
This barn built in 1869 was awesome. They should have had that open for tours. I love old barns.

The rock HAD to have been man placed in my opinion. The middle rock supporting it has a noticeable groove in that appears to be a sign of working on it. It's been there so long no one knows how long, it's always been there as long as anyone knows. 
These bridges always bothered my mom on our sometimes twice a month trips to Connecticut we used to take when my NASCAR dealer was open, never saw them from below before, in Brewster.
This is the view on top of them.
Then we went to East Fishkill for the Rotary Club car show, the 6th one they held but the first I heard about. The turnout was small, the forecast called for rain so a lot of people stayed home.
This is a first for me, the first of three firsts I experienced that day. This truck is a 1945 model. During the war, civilian vehicle production ended in early 1942, everything went to the war effort. However, a small number of trucks and an even smaller number of cars were built for essential use, mostly home front military needs and farming, food production and the like. That's what this one was, owned by a farmer in 45, and on only it's 4th owner since new. I had never seen any of the rare war era civilian cars before, at least in person so that was a thrill, and made it my favorite at the show. The truck would not have had chrome hubcaps when new, all chromium went to the war effort. 
I may be known as El Camino Billy, but I love Rancheros as well, and this was a particularly nice one, a 1973 model. When I was young we had a 1974 Torino wagon, which was essentially the same vehicle aft of the doors. (Both Rancheros and El Caminos were created by cutting the back off a wagon)
After we left the car show, we decided to go to Matamoras, Pennsylvania, for a free standing Roy Rogers! We decided to compare the taste since we remembered it so well from the day before. This is the location we'll be going to from now on. It won't be as often since it's about an hour away, but it will happen. Along the way we happened upon a car fire in the opposite direction on 84. It's not the first car fire I've seen, but the most smoky. I wasn't able to get a picture of the vehicle on fire, it was a white pickup truck. 

You can even see it in the rearview mirror. Scary stuff, I hope everyone is ok. It was cleaned up by time we came back through, just a scortch mark left on the road. 
I love the open road.
The Delaware river, which contains the state line between New York and Pennsylvania, was extremely high. Right below this bridge is the Tri-State monument I visited and wrote about in March 2020. It may have been under water at this point.
As we got into PA, you could actually see the approaching rain storm.
This photo shows it much better.
And here's Roy Rogers. We were planning to eat inside, which would have been the first time we ate in a freestanding Roy Rogers since circa 1993 when the one 5 minutes from my house closed. Unfortunately they were short staffed and we couldn't go in, we had to eat in the car! 

Coming back over the bridge, those trees are actually in New Jersey, which meets New York and Pennsylvania right there under the bridge.
Nice clouds
This Jeep was from Hawaii! That's a very rare license plate to see...I think only the fourth time I've ever seen it. That averages once per decade! 

A few posts back I talked about the removal of the toll booths, here's an update.
Then we went BACK to the car show, making it the first time I've ever left a car show, went to a different state and then back to the show! Also we got off at the same exit in both directions on the same day, something I don't ever remember doing before.
While we were in Pennsylvania an El Camino showed up!
This 1933 Ford was the oldest car there.
I just really like this photo of a 2002 Pontiac Firebird.

The next day, my Mom and I took a ride! That's actually really rare these days although it used to be something we did a lot. Health problems for both of us got in the way. 
Most of our ride was spent in the back country roads of Rhinebeck, NY.

We even came to a fork in the road in the tiny Hamlet of Rock City.
Brooklyn Heights road...is not anywhere near Brooklyn. 

A deer crossed the road in front of us. Two did actually, This is the second one, the photo is out of order, sorry about that. 
Some cows

Rhinebeck has some really fancy houses
Then we went down Mill Road which was deceptively awesome. Pictures are not that great, I was not able to get as many nice shots as I usually do. I missed the waterfall you can see completely. You can see the Hudson River briefly below. 

The Landsman's Kill enters the Hudson via a waterfall under this bridge.

Then we drove into Bowdoin Park right in my home town but didn't get out. You can see the Hudson River again.

Thanks for reading! 


  1. Wow, Roy Rogers. Didn't know they were still around. Had one in the nearby mall but it closed like 30 years ago.

    1. We used to have a lot more but most of them closed in the 1990s, unfortunately.

  2. Love upstate scenery even if it's places I've never been.

    We drove through New York on Saturday -- one deluge after another, it was not fun. And it's raining right now. Pretty sick of it. At least the grass I planted has grown in the front yard.

    What kind of food is going to be at the rest stops? Pretty weird that they're removing all the fast food places, I would've guessed they were money-makers for the state but I guess not. Also I'm still not used to driving through where the toll booths once were without stopping.

    1. The main draw for the new food places is going to be Chick-Fil-A, Dunkin Donuts and something with a Panda in the logo. Dunkin Donuts is the only one I'll eat at, and it's not the best option for someone who has to worry about his blood sugar.

      This has been the wettest July in quite a while it seems like. Every day it either rains or looks like it's going to.

  3. I love that Weeping Willow tree!

  4. A. Any specific reason they will be removing food from these service stations? Seems like the idea spot for restaurants and fast food grab & go stands.

    B. Love the rain... but not the biggest fan of driving in it (especially the first rain in a long time).

    C. That 1945 truck is awesome. That Ranchero isn't too shabby either.

    D. Scary to think the river could be so high that the Tri-State monument is completely under water.

    E. My eyes suck, but if that's one of the "rainbow" Hawaii license plates... I see them every now and then. Maybe three to five times a year.

    F. Love these travel posts! Thanks Billy!

    1. They will have food, just not good food...We've had a TON of rain lately. Everything is high, but that was exceptionally high. While I have not seen the Delaware in that area all that often, it was probably double the highest level I've ever seen before. It was one of those plates. I would say you're closer but with Hawaii I am not sure that matters all that much :) Another travel post coming next week..

  5. Man, I wish they wouldn't tear down and re-do those service stations. They're nice-looking buildings, and I have lots of good memories of them going all the way back to childhood road trips. I'm pretty sure I've had a few Roy Rogers meals from that same Plattekill location.

    Regardless, nice work accomplishing so much in that three-day span, Billy!

  6. Hey, what's Balanced Rock? What do you think it is? :)

    Fun recap!