"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

August 16, 2017

Aug. 13 - Cayuga Lake, NY

Crowbar Point - Anchorage

“Advise from a LAKE – Be Clear, Make Positive Ripples, Look Beneath the Surface, Stay Calm, Shore Up Friendships, Take Time to Reflex, Be Full of Life” – Ilan Shamir

We haven't spent the night at anchor since May 9...that's a long time, a very long time. There aren't a lot of places shallow enough along the shore of Cayuga Lake to anchor and even fewer that offer protection from the wind, but we did find a spot close to Crowbar Point. We don't usually like being out on the water on a Sunday, but the weather was perfect and we hated to pass up the chance to spend the night on the hook and Stan was itchin' to fish for lake salmon. The lake was busy, but it was fun to watch all the sailboats and by the time we were ready to anchor most people were heading home.

Just a few of the beautiful homes on the lake
Activities on the lake 
We've gotten a little spoiled since we've been in Ithaca. The marina is very peaceful...no wakes, no road noises, no wind or current rocking the boat, which means we have no little boat noises, no squeaky line noises and no sailboat shroud banging in the distance to wake us up...nights are completely quiet. We enjoy the gentle rocking we get when we anchor...and we enjoyed it this time too, but the wind picked up a little more than we expected during the night, making the new blinds and things hanging on the wall bang around. Noises we haven't heard in awhile. So unfortunately we didn't sleep as well as we'd liked...like I said we're very spoiled. 

View of the anchorage from our door
Stan returning to the boat
Even with less sleep it felt amazing to wake up to a beautiful, cool morning over looking the lake. Stan left early to fish and I enjoyed coffee on the flybridge. Stan's been learning a lot about fishing on Cayuga Lake, although the big trout and salmon still elude him. I have no doubt Stan will get one before we head home in October and all his work to catch one will only make the fish taste better when he does get one. In the mean time we enjoyed a salmon a friend on the dock gave us. They are definitely good eats. 

The best thing about the noises waking us up was seeing this amazing moon rising. This isn't my picture...but believe me, this is just what it looked like. So pretty!
Our anchorage
Lake salmon...the one we were given and the one Stan caught. Hopefully we'll have a big one of our own to take a picture of soon.
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Instragram or Google+.

August 15, 2017

Finger Lakes Wineries and Breweries (Part II)

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“Take your pleasure seriously." —Charles Eames

Three Brothers Wineries has 3 wineries (Stony Lonesome Wine Cellars, Passion Feet Wine Barn & Bagg Dare Wine Co.) and a microbrewery (War Horse Brewing Co.) all on site. Each with a uniquely themed tasting room. They have an expansive selection of hand-crafted wine, microbrews, hard cider and sodas…so there's something for everyone who visits.
War Horse Brewing Company brews hard cider, custom ales, lagers, seasonal beers and house-made sodas. The decor of this tasting room honors those who've served and fought for our freedom. We felt like we were on the set of MASH.

Goose Watch Winery began production in 1997. It sits on a hill overlooking Cayuga Lake, with a tasting room in a beautifully restored century old barn surrounded by vineyards, nut trees, gardens and breathtaking views. We enjoyed the winery, but unfortunately the view wasn’t as pretty as it could have been…since the weather was a little dreary the day we were there.  
We bought a bottle of 2016 Rosé of Pinot Noir, we enjoyed a glass at the winery and took the rest home. The wine is described as having notes of strawberry, cherry, honeysuckle & vanilla aromas. With flavors that expand on the palate to tangerine and lime, balanced nicely by a vein of minerality and a bright acidity...who writes this stuff? The wine was very good, but I had a hard time making out all those flavors.
Treleaven Wines - The winery began in 1984 when the family grain farm was converted into a vineyard. They promote themselves as your backyard. It's the perfect place to enjoy the summer sun, a bottle of your favorite wine and a picnic while listening to live music and taking in the beautiful grounds of the vineyard. They offer live music 2-3 nights a week. We enjoyed the vineyards Silver Lining Chardonnay, it was crisp and refreshing with notes of melon and citrus. 
I saw this sign at one of the wineries we visited...thought it was pretty cute.
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Instragram or Google+.

August 14, 2017

Aug. 12 – Great Gully Falls, Union Springs, NY

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

"And then I learned adventures are the best way to learn." —Unknown

Stan needed, wait, make that wanted, some different fishing supplies so we took a road trip up the lake to Bass Pro Shop outside of Auburn. We could have taken a shorter, more direct route, but what the fun in that? We drove up the west side of the lake so we could have lunch at O'Malley's. 

O'Malley's a log cabin that is located about halfway up the lake and offers a great view with your meal. Everyone has recommended it and our meal was very nice, sitting on the deck overlooking the lake. From there we enjoyed the drive north to the Bass Pro Shop...another fishing pole and a new spinning reel for Stan and a shirt for me. Fishing poles...like boats and tools...all you need is just one more. 
The view from our table on the front deck of O'Malley's
From Auburn we drove down the lake on the eastern side, stopping in Union Springs to look at a marina that was recommended for winter storage. Our last stop of the day was at the Great Gully Falls trail. It's a pretty easy hike up the creek to an 18’ falls. Half the trail is through the creek, so we were glad we had hiking sandals. We both enjoy hikes like this one…we like getting our feet wet. Our only complaint was there were too many other people around enjoying the hike. The falls had a little water and the creek was very low, which made the hike even easier. I could see this could be a dangerous place when the water is heavy. The best things about the trail are the swimming holes and the fact you can walk behind the falls.

The lower falls and swimming hole...as you can see there isn't a lot of water this time of year.
The trail
The upper falls
Can you see me behind the falls taking pictures?
Same shot with different shutter speeds
View from behind the falls
My favorite shot of the day
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Instragram or Google+.

August 12, 2017

Aug. 9 - Saratoga Springs, NY

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars.” —Henry Van Dyke

Our friends in Oneonta called us Sunday to tell us they were going to the races in Saratoga Springs on Wednesday...they wanted to know if we'd like to join them. Of course we wanted to! We're always up for a new adventure. We drove over to Oneonta on Tuesday and enjoyed an evening in Cooperstown. We wandered around town, look at a few of the famous baseball places, did a tasting at Cooperstown Distillery and had a wonderful dinner at the Hawkeye Bar & Grill in the Otesaga Hotel. On Wednesday we spent a great day at the races in Saratoga Springs. I'll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

Cooperstown Distillery
Otesaga Resort Hotel was built in 1909 and is full of charm and gracious hospitality of a bygone era. It's located on the southern shore of Otsego Lake and offers fantastic views from its dinning rooms and luxurious guest rooms. 
We enjoyed a great meal in a fantastic setting on an evening with perfect temperatures...it made for an impeccable ending to a wonderful day.  
Our dinner at the Hawkeye over looking the lake
The view of Otsego Lake from our table. This lake is the source of the Susquehanna River, which runs all the way to the Chesapeake Bay.
Oklahoma Training Track is located across the street from Saratoga Race Course. It's where the trainers bring their horses for spring training before the races start in July. The jockeys, trainers, horses and stable hands live here during the race season. We were lucky to get a behind the scenes look at things since we were with George and Maryann.
Saratoga Race Track opened in 1863 and has been the home of the Travers Stakes since 1864, the oldest major thoroughbred horse race in the United States. The racecourse has been in use almost every year since 1864, with only a handful of exceptions. The Saratoga meet originally lasted only four days, but has been lengthened gradually over the years and now runs for 40 racing days traditionally ending on Labor Day.
The racetrack offers viewing of the races from luxury suits, the club house, general grandstands, restaurants and picnic areas. (click on picture to enlarge)
The picnic areas offer a relaxed way to enjoy the races...there is entertainment, arts and crafts booths, a playground and food and drink venders.
We had a table in the Club House; where we enjoyed a nice lunch and had a great place to relax between races. This is the view from the Club House of the grounds.
Prior to each race, a bell is hand rung at exactly 17 minutes prior to scheduled post time for each race to call the jockeys to the paddock. Patrons can get close up views of the horses being led to the paddock as the path from the stables runs through the picnic grounds.
The Paddock is a small, fenced area that holds horses for saddling and exercising before the race starts. We had special access to the area because Maryann and George are breeders. It really gave us an up close look at the horses and it was fun to watch the jockeys, owners and breeders. It made the experience so much better.
A look at the Paddock. This is Sea Hero - an American-bred Thoroughbred racehorse best known for winning the 1993 Kentucky Derby and Travers Stakes. Since 2011, Sea Hero has been the oldest living winner of the Kentucky Derby.
George and Stan waiting to place a bet. We won a few and lost a few and had a great time. Maryann was the big winner.

There are three separate tracks in the main course at Saratoga Race Course:
  • a main dirt track which is 1 1⁄8-mile (9-furlong)
  • a 1-mile (8-furlong) turf track, known officially as the Mellon Turf Course
  • an inner turf track which is 7 furlong 
Thursday morning we hung around Waterhill Farms with Maryann and George...there's always a little work to be done and we enjoy helping out.
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Instragram or Google+.