Oldcat and the Ironman (and women!) Competition

Trip Start Jul 13, 2013
Trip End Aug 12, 2013

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Flag of United States  , New York
Sunday, July 28, 2013

We awoke to the slight pitter patter of a small rain shower on the roof and worried that we would be driving in rain all day, but thankfully that didn't happen. The temperature was 64 when we got up, a little warmer than it has been the last several days.

Since today is Sunday, we took time this morning for our Sunday morning devotional. Today’s verse was 1 Corinthians 13:8 which is "Love never fails—never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end." The lesson was especially good for today because we had been talking a few minutes before we sat down to look at the book how blessed we have been to have each other all these years and how love seems to deepen more with time if you are very, very lucky. Kelly S—you would have cried, so it is just as well you weren’t here! Looking at the previous lesson that is for July 27, we were tickled to see that we had done that one three different times on other Sundays as we traveled. The first was in 1997 when we were in Minto, Yukon Territory on our way to Dawson City and then on to Alaska. The second was in 2003 in Frankenmuth, MI on one of our tours to Michigan. The third was in 2006 in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. The lesson that day was from 2 Corinthians 4:16 and Ephesians 4:23. We have thoroughly enjoyed using this book as we have traveled through the years.

Since we wanted to follow at least a few of oldcat’s recommendations as to our tour in this area, we hurried our “get ready” and were rolling out of camp at 8:05 heading up the road to the Adirondack General Store for breakfast. The temperature was only 66 as we left the campground and there was mist swirling through the trees as we traveled. Our drive this morning was beautiful—huge evergreens, many hardwoods, and meadows that looked as if they should have moose grazing in them along with tons of wildflowers. Although the trees are much bigger here than we are used to at home, the drive still reminded us of driving along the Blueridge Parkway in North Carolina and Virginia. Magnificent! Our drive took us through Pottersville, NY whose claim to fame apparently is the fact that the National Christmas Tree came from there in 1964!

It seems that we were enjoying the scenery and the drive so very much that we missed our turnoff to The Adirondack General Store. Well, suffice it to say, there was general agitation along with some under the breath muttering from the two in the front seat…and Geeps said, “Recalculating,” several times in a nasty toned little voice before we were back on track. (Oldcat’s name may have been somewhat besmirched a time or two also, but that is another story!) We finally managed to arrive at our destination at 9:00 which was one of the points on oldcat’s scavenger hunt. Wow! What a meal! Betty C., we took care of your wish for us to have “anything maple” this morning! John had a full breakfast and I made the mistake of NOT ordering a short stack of pancakes rather than the full thing! As we staggered out of the place 45 minutes later, I doubt that either of us thought we would ever eat again. By the way, oldcat, we didn’t stop at Oscar’s Smoke House but we did pick up some items from the General Store from there, so we think that counts on your “must do” list also.

Leaving the scene of the crime, we continued driving East Shore Drive to the third and final stop on this scavenger hunt. This was an absolutely gorgeous drive even if the sky was overcast. We can’t even imagine what it must look like in the Fall. A few miles down the road, we stopped at Sand Point Beach where oldcat and his bride have spent time off and on for many years. This consisted of several little yellow cottages clustered on a beach on Schroon Lake. We even went across the street to see if we could say hello to a friend of oldcat’s and pass along his greetings. His friend wasn’t at home, but we left a note on his door giving him the good wishes of his friend back in Tennessee.

From Sand Point Beach we continued our trek northward. At one point we discussed driving into Canada to spend the night at a campground there just because we were close and to say we did it. After looking at maps we decided that if we went there we would probably want to stay two nights so that we could tour Montreal and since neither of us were necessarily pushing to do that, we decided that we would continue to Wilmington, NY and a campground we had already picked out…a drive that should have taken us about 45 minutes to get to. Well, you know the old saying about the best laid plans of mice and men…

Two and a half hours and numerous detours later—we were finally there…sort of. And therein lies a tale: Who knew (apparently thousands!) that the Lake Placid Ironman Competition was happening today on the road that we needed to travel?? Wow! According to a brochure, more than 2,500 athletes from 19 countries and 45 states participate not to mention all the support staff…and families…and friends that want to be there for their athlete…AND everyone else that just wants to see it happen! The competition is this: a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, culminating in a 26.2 mile run!!! We have NEVER seen so many people along a narrow two way road (half of which is closed for the bikers and runners) and so many detours! Wow again! We don’t know how many highway patrol officers there are in New York State, but of them had to be on the road between Keene, Lake Placid, and Wilmington where we finally ended up. We are amazed at the physical and mental prowess that the men and women who competed today must have—it boggles the mind.

Getting to the campground office at 2:00 we thought that OUR battle was done. Not so fast, grasshopper—we paid for our site and then had to “circle the block” to get back on the other side of the highway where we were to go. Well, the block turned out to be a ten mile run on back roads to get where we were going…which was within sight distance of the campground office across the road! THEN (you new RVers, and you know who you are, should love the next part of this story…you old timers will sadly smile and say, “Been there, done that.”) when we finally pulled into our site for the night 45 minutes later (sigh) it wasn’t level (of course) but the power was good. The kicker was that the sewer dump was UPHILL in front of the water and electric hookups. I know this doesn’t make any sense to a non RVer, but trust me on this one; it is a pain to work around.

Oh well, all’s well that ends well. We are safely dumped (gives you mind pictures doesn’t it!?), leveled up, hooked up, have had a wonderful supper of Linguini and white clam sauce (not as good as yours Ernie, but pretty good) and have settled in for the evening. From our site we were able to watch the last hour and a half of the bikers ride past and cheer them on. We were amazed that many of them at this point in the bike run (after swimming the 2.4 miles, already had ridden 100 miles and were 12 miles from the finish line ,and with 26.2 miles of running to come) still had enough energy to make funny comments and thank folks for cheering them on. I expect they will be more tired than we are this evening. We really have had a good day. The only rain we had today was just a very light passing sprinkle or two and we have seen some fantastic scenery…and eaten WAY too much! Thanks (we think!) oldcat!

We drove 117 miles today.
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Chuck & Kris on

You are getting very close to our former home, Saranac Lake is only a hop skip and jump from where you are for the night. We actually used to work for the Ironman every year.
We will be in Schroon Lake next weekend. Sorry we will miss you by so few days.
Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy !!!!!

D. Crip on

You must be sending your fallish weather our way as it was a cool 62 here this morning and never got past 80 today. Supposedly down in the high 50's tonight! Feels like fall almost. Enjoy your tales.

Ed C on

You are bringing back some memories when I was younger. We used to go to upstate New York to vacation and visit family. It is truly beautiful country.
Be safe and have fun.

Camille on

We are enjoying your trip. Wish we were doing it too

Annette and Emmett Wright on


You have really had a nice trip. We have travelled many places, but nothing like what you have done. I do not knows warm if you remember us or not. We lived in Lake Providence and I placed Bunco with you and Susan. We live in FL now and really like it. It is warm here is why we like FL.

I hope that I hear from you.


dwlp.travelkids on

Kris and Chuck...we actually plan to head towards Saranac Lake sometime today! We had forgotten that you all came from up here...it is a lovely area. You have to be like us in that you miss the mountains from time to time where we all live now. It would have been a hoot if we had run into each other yesterday...like we could have picked each other out in the crowd of thousands! Be safe in your travels next week.

oldcat on

WOW! I am so glad you got to ADK General Store. I should have told you about the homemade pies they have there in the back because as your sign at home says, "Pie makes everything better". Thanks SO MUCH for including the pics of the store and SPB, they actually made my eyes a wee bit damp. While some of the cabins have been built in recent years the cabin we usually stay in there is one that I stayed in with my parents 60 years ago and there are several that are that old. VERY nostalgic to return there and see friends I have known for many years. Thanks again, you guys are the bestest!

dwlp.travelkids on

You are more than welcome. We had a good time doing it. As far as the pies are concerned, we DID see them and they looked delicious. Fortunately we were so full from breakfast we weren't tempted to get one!

Mary R. on

Have really been enjoying your daily blog. Thank you for the wonderful birthday card. Missed you at the party but know you were having a great time anyway.

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