Robert Moses State Park, Massena, NY.
Robert Moses State Park is located on the banks of the St. Lawrence River near to Massena, NY. (Location). I was traveling to this state park in order to enjoy and photograph the activities of the St. Lawrence County Historical Association Civil War Weekend. I was detained in Ottawa on family-related business so did not arrive at the park until dusk and the park office closed just before I arrived. I had brought my tent expecting that I would not have too much trouble finding an available spot to pitch the small tent. There isn’t a whole lot of bright public lighting at Robert Moses State Park and only a few signs to point visitors in the direction of camping spots. Not a problem in daylight, but can be a bit of a problem after dark :-).
The park itself is spacious and partially on the mainland and partially on Barnhart Island. It has a nice beach and marina area on Barnhart Island. The main check-in office and a small Nature Center are also at the beach. Since I was there for the Civil War Re-enactment and not for swimming, I didn’t spend any time on the beach or at the marina. With a bit of direction from other campers I was able to find a number of tenting sites to choose from and with my headlamp on I had no problem setting up the tent. For this trip, I was using my North Face Talus 33 tent (my review of the tent).Â In the morning, I found a number of fuzzy white caterpillars had crawled up between the tent and the fly so, before packing the tent back into its stuff sack, I turned it upside down and gave it a good shaking. A park ranger whom I spoke to couldn’t identify the caterpillar species but did mention that some park personnel had had a skin reaction when handling this type of caterpillar a previous year. I react badly to Poison Ivy but, thankfully, didn’t have any reaction to these caterpillars even though I was moving them around to try to get a better angle for a picture. Lucky me, this time! 🙂
The re-enactment itself was being held in the picnic area of the park and getting there from my camping spot was quite easy.Â Roads in the park are paved and there is lots of wildlife to see alongside the road early in the morning. While at the park, I saw some white-tailed deer and a number of bird species including Hairy Woodpeckers and a couple of small flocks of wild Turkeys.
Heading home after the events of the re-enactment, I crossed the bridge to get off of Barnhart Island and then passed through the tunnel that passes under the Eisenhower Lock. Not a good idea to think about how much water and how big a ship might be above you as you travel through the tunnel :-).
There was a good-sized tanker scheduled to pass through the lock about the time that I was leaving Robert Moses State Park so, once I was through the tunnel, I stopped in at the Dwight D. Eisenhower Visitor Center and waited for the Thalassa Desgagnes to arrive (Eisenhower Lock images here)