Since the primary purpose of our trip to Morgantown was to attend the OU-WV football game, we didn’t do any notable sightseeing in Morgantown. The drive from Deep Creek was pleasant but without particular note. It is beautiful countryside, though, and we compared what we saw with what we’d been told about the beauty of the area and didn’t find it lacking one bit.
West Virginia University has a transportation arrangement similar to OU’s, except there are two different parking areas that provide bus transportation to Mountaineer Field. We parked at an outlying shopping center and climbed aboard one of the waiting buses. It is always wise to be prepared when doing this, meaning you should have your field glasses, gloves, blankets and other cold-weather gear – and of course, your game tickets.
That good advice comes from the voice of experience, of course. About half way to the field, I realized that I had left the game tickets in the car. The bus driver was very nice and let me ride back to the parking lot, grab my tickets, and head to the field again (without having to buy another bus ticket).
That generosity and good spirit continued throughout the evening. The Mountaineer Band put on an impressive marching musical display pre-game and half-time, even playing “Oklahoma” while forming the shape of our state. The Mountaineer fans were gracious and welcoming, and even the couple sitting beside me put up with my loud cheering for the Sooners.
Included in our trip to Maryland and the OU-West Virginia game was a beautiful day of sightseeing in Pennsylvania. By staying with family at their weekend home at Deep Creek Lake in western Maryland, we were in a great location to see several nearby locations of interest.
Fallingwater was designed on the basis of cantilevers so that some of the rooms and outdoor areas extend over the falls of Bear Run. The design concepts were based on “organic architecture” and the home encompasses elements to include the outside. Corner windows in the bedrooms open from the corner, giving an unimpeded view of the waterfalls below.
A swimming area in the stream can be accessed from a glass-enclosed area in the living room, and the driveway went from the bridge over the stream to the back side of the home and up the hill behind to a four-car carport (which is now enclosed and used as a small visitors’ auditorium). Quarters for the household help are also part of this second building.
We were in awe of Frank Lloyd Wright’s architectural genius once again. Native stone and steel features painted in his notorious Cherokee red help the structure fit the setting.
From Fallingwater we began the drive back, stopping at Ohiopyle State Park. The park is highlighted by the rushing waters of the Youghiogheny River. We enjoyed the impressive falls that extend along Highway 381. A narrow park area with several overlooks provides a pleasant resting spot and views of the falls.
The day trip from Deep Creek Lake to Fallingwater back through Ohiopyle to Deep Creek gave us a delightful taste of the area and a desire to return to take in several other destinations, including Kentuck Knob, another Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home. Maybe on our next trip…?
We really enjoy taking trips. We enjoy driving on some trips, seeing parts of the United States that we haven’t seen before – or sometimes reliving memories of past trips to the same destinations. When time isn’t of the essence, a driving trip is probably the most educational, at the least.
Sometimes, however, it pays to weigh the economics of flying or driving. When you drive, you really should consider the depreciation that the mileage may cause on your car and the cost of gasoline. And you have to add in the cost of lodging if your trip is more than a day trip.
As we planned our driving trip to Morgantown, WV for the OU-West Virginia football game, we began to re-think our plans. This would be approximately 2400 miles, 19 hours each way! Sure we could push it and spend only one night out, but driving for 9-10 hours for two days in a row would probably mean we couldn’t move for two days after that!
To break it down to two nights out would be much more reasonable, but of course, more expensive. We were guesstimating $90-$100 per night for lodging, so that would add $400 to our trip.
We also had decided to visit family in Columbia, MD. They also own a weekend place at Deep Creek Lake in western Maryland, only 50 miles from Morgantown, so they were looking forward to joining us for the football game, too.With all of that in mind, we decided we would see what it would cost to fly. Checking with American Airlines and Southwest Airlines, I found that the cost of flights was still more than the cost to drive. I then checked Kayak.com, to see if by any chance there might be a different carrier that would meet our needs.
I like checking flights and hotels through Kayak, because it provides a cost comparison of Hotwire, Priceline, Expedia, Cheapoair, and Travelocity. Generally they are pretty comparable, but occasionally one may have a discount that is better than the others.
This was definitely the right move, because Kayak showed fares on Delta Airlines that were notably cheaper than the others I had checked! I went directly to Delta’s website then, and made the reservations. We saved several hundred dollars, several days, and were set for a great trip of visiting, sightseeing, and cheering on the Sooners!