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Eric Meier’s Top Upstate New York Dream Drive: NY Route 97

New York State Route 97 at Lordsville
Eric Meier/Townsquare Media

I received my copy of AAA’s Car and Driver magazine yesterday.  One of the articles was a list of thier choices for the top 3 Dream Drives in New York State.  They included Route 30 thought the Adirondacks, Route 22 from the Bronx to the Canadian border in Clinton County and US 6 across the mid Hudson Valley.

A great list and I’ve driven portions of all of those roads.  But there was a major omission to that list: NY Route 97.  97 runs from Hancock to Port Jervis along the Delaware River.  It passes through small towns, rolling hills and the infamous Hawk’s Nest, where the roadway curves around steep embankments above the Delaware river.

The route hugs the border with Pennsylvania and one of the highlights to me was several one-lane bridges that cross between the states.  The most interesting of these crossings is the Roebling Aqueduct Bridge which used to carry water as a bypass to the Delaware river but has now been converted to vehicle traffic.  Driving over a river on a depressed roadway is quite an experience.

Arriving in Port Jervis, a spot you can’t miss is the Tri-Point Monument.  The marker denotes the point where New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey meet.  It’s not easy to get to, hidden in the back of a cemetery and under the I-84 overpass.  But if you find it, you can stand on it and claim you were in all thee states at the same time.

My latest trip on NY 97 was in autumn, when I captured this photo that optimizes the Route 97 experience.

Route 97 autumn
Eric Meier/Townsquare Media

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