Thursday, August 13, 2020
Happy Birthday to my Dad who is enjoying a more glorious view than me.
We slept until 8. The Penn Wells Hotel is like stepping back in time. There is a radiator in the room (andthankfully a window air conditione, pipes along the high ceilings, separate faucets for hot and cold water in the bathroom sink, and you know it is an old building when there is a fall-out shelter insignia on the door.
We had taken the tiny elevator up last night. The pre-Covid sign said limit 4; that must be without any luggage. For kicks, we took the stairs down. As in Britain’s old “Faulty Towers” hotels, as we and our Hungarian travel mates call them, there is a fire door at the bottom of each stairway, before you take one additional step down onto a landing, taking a quarter turn to descend to next floor. We were in Room 310, on the 3rd floor. Yet, in keeping with European customs, we went down three flights of stairs to get to the lobby, which is considered the ground floor, not the first floor.
Breakfast was Covid modified, a small selection of cereal packets, yogurt, pastries, coffee, and tea. I could sense the grand parties that had occurred in this dining room, the nostalgic music playing overhead set the tone.
Wellsboro is a lovely small town with many large Victorian homes and its two main streets still lined with gas lamps. The downtown seems thriving with businesses and restaurants. It looked to be a lovely town in which to reside, nestled in the mountains.
Our main destination today, besides the Delaware River, was The Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. We visited the east rim at Leonard Harrison State Park.
I struggle to find words to describe the beauty and the views of mountains layered one behind and beside each other, with a cloud here and there, all changing the shades of green. Far below at the canyon floor, we could hear the river water traveling over rocks. In between were turkey vultures playing in the air currents, on the lookout for breakfast.
We walked to the overlooks, then took a 1-mile hike down into the woods to another overlook. The view was peaceful and relaxing.
On the road again, we enjoyed seeing the small towns, farms, and the diverse views as we traveled east on US 6. Around 1:00, we both began to get hungry and we both were craving BBQ. We kept our eye open for a while with no luck. Gregg suggested I Google BBQ in the next little town.
Much to our delight, Old School BBQ next to an old school house in Wyalosing, aka the middle of nowhere, came up. They had me at brisket. Google Maps have us a breathtaking scenic tour to get there. We were not disappointed. The grill master specializes in Texas brisket. Seriously, no knife needed, it just fell apart on the fork. His baked beans and red skin potatoes were amazing, too! Four thumbs up!
What better to chase BBQ with than … ice cream! Driving to Dalton to eat at Manning Farm Dairy, we listened to a Pregel webinar on frozen desserts. I felt like I was back at the Ice Cream 101 course, geeking out.
You know it is fresh ice cream when you see the cows in the barn next to the creamery. It was delicious and a nice texture. Gregg got “Barnyard Gravy” – vanilla ice cream with peanut butter ripples and chocolate covered pretzels. I had Almond Joy and Mocha chip.
Having just listened to the webinar and topics like emulsifiers and stabilizers, it was interesting to notice how the ice cream looked a little gummy (but did not reflect that in mouth-feel.)
Forty minutes later, we were at another farm to try their ice cream. Creamworks Dairy in Waymart was very unique – all their products were sold on the honor system – packaged ice cream, milk, corn, and more.
We have seen maple items for sale today so I picked Maple Walnut. Gregg picked Turtle Tracks. Yum!
With about 40 miles left to travel Pennsylvania’s segment of US Route 6, we stopped to see Shohola Falls. A narrow road wound through the woods and came out at a parking lot by spillway. What? They call THAT a waterfall?
We got out and followed the arrow pointing towards a trail which, delightfully led us to a “real” set of waterfalls. I love the sound of the falling water. We hiked a bit to get a better view. It was worth the stop.
Mile marker 400, the final marker, was our next stop! We found it in Matamoras, PA, not too far from the bridge going over the Delaware River. Ironically, it was on Pennsylvania Avenue and by an ice cream shop! And within view was a Turkey Hill gas station (we toured the Turkey Hill ice cream Experience on our other PA vacation a few weeks ago.)
It was tempting to get ice cream to celebrate until we realized it was “just” Perry’s ice cream. We’d had our fill of ice cream for the day so we passed. Tomorrow is another day. And, incidentally, I think at least four creameries are on the schedule. Yes, we are obsessed with ice cream!
Since the first creamery on our schedule doesn’t open until noon, we got a hotel in Milford, about two hours north of our first stop tomorrow. It is nice to have an early evening in the room for me to blog and Gregg to catch up on some things.