Last fall, while Chris and I were on our first annual date weekend in Shenandoah, we started to think about what our big trip for 2018 could be. One of us (I think it was Chris and Chris thinks it was me… so who knows??) came up with the idea of doing a trip around all five of the Great Lakes. We considered the idea of camping on the United States and Canada sides of each lake, but ultimately decided to stay stateside as the boys don’t have passports and we didn’t want to go through the hassle of getting them and going through customs.
One day Chris mentioned extending the trip beyond the Great Lakes and going a bit further south to Illinois before heading back home. Chris’s parents are from Illinois and Chris grew up spending summers with his grandparents in his parents’ hometown. He’s always wanted to show me and the boys the area, so it seemed like the perfect time to do it since we were so close.
After months of research and planning (thank you, Chris!), we established our route and booked all the campgrounds! This was our final itinerary:
The one place we’ve been to every year since we started camping is Lake George. We have thoroughly enjoyed our stays at Adirondack Camping Village (here and here), however they close for the season after Labor Day and our trip was planned for late September. So we were forced to pick another campground in the Lake George area. I figured if we couldn’t stay at our favorite spot outside of the village, I wanted to stay somewhere closer to the village . We weren’t sure we would fit at Lake George Battleground Campground so we settled on King Phillips Campground.
In late August, we packed up the camper and headed north to Niagara Falls. We left on Friday evening and stayed at Arrowhead Marina and RV Park in Schenectady, New York. It broke up the trip — which is helpful with kids — and let us get to our final destination a little earlier the next day. We got there around 6 P.M., set up, ate dinner, and checked out the campground a little bit. Our site was not ideal but it was fine for our short stay. Our fire pit was on the opposite side of where it should be. You can see how close the RVs are to each other in the background of some of the pictures. Our neighbor’s electric hookup is right next to our picnic table.
In August, we headed up to Glimmerglass State Park in Cooperstown, New York. Glimmerglass State Park overlooks the northern tip of Ostego Lake, which is the “Glimmerglass” of James Fenimore Cooper’s Leatherstocking Tales. It is a fairly small camping facility with only 37 sites.
We left for Glimmerglass on Friday after Chris got out of work, so we didn’t get there until 7ish. We set up the camper and explored the park a little bit — Carter was very excited there was a basketball hoop — before calling it a night.
We got back from Maine on Sunday night. Wynn & Judy returned home from their camping trip on Thursday night and we were off on our first family adventure in the new camper on Saturday morning.
This trip was originally supposed to be for Chris, Carter, and Judy to go on, but since Judy just got back from a trip and we were all eager to use the new camper, we made it a family trip instead. Originally, they were scheduled to camp at Wilmington Notch Campground, but the new camper was too long to stay there, so we booked a site at Cranberry Lake Campground in Clifton, New York instead.
In May, we headed up to Haines Falls, New York and camped at North-South Lake Campground. It’s only about an hour north of us so we were able to leave after Carter’s tee -ball game on Saturday and still get there with plenty of time to enjoy the day!
In August, we headed back up to Cayuga Lake State Park to go to Empire Farm Days again. This time, we brought Benjamin and Jackson with us. Since the five of us were all going this year, Wynn stayed at a separate campsite and tent camped. Read More »