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

May 29, 2018

May 25-26 - Cheshire, CT

"...you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child, or a parent." –Barbara Pierce Bush

We love our new home in Ithaca. We like being close to our family, we enjoy all the activities in the area, we really like the temperature here in the summer, no biting bugs and there are so many places to explore. Did I mention the grandkids live close...we really love that. The only down side is not running into old cruising friends on the water. The only way to see them now is to visit them by car, so this past weekend we drove up to Connecticut to visit the crew of Amici. We haven't seen them since last April.

No trip to New England would be complete without lobster and Ted made sure we had plenty of lobster to eat...in fact they probably were the biggest lobsters we've ever seen. Our whole weekend was fantastic...great conversations, great food...great friends. 
Pizza is a big thing in New Haven, CT. Their style is Neapolitan pizza, locally known as apizza. It originated at the Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana and is now served in many other pizza restaurants in the area, most notably Sally's Apizza and Modern Apizza. We went to Pepe's for lunch today and we've eaten at Modern's when we were here years ago...hard to say which is the best.
Our selection for lunch today were white clam pie and a margarita pizza...they were huge and very good.
We met some other cruising friends at Stony Creek Brewery in Brandford in the afternoon...we had fun catching up with them, but it was very crowded since it was such a beautiful day. Summer has arrived in New England and everyone was out enjoying sun.
Circle of Friends - Susie, Stan, Noel, Robin, Ted and Sally
Before we headed back to the boat on Sunday we stopped at Lock 12 Historical Park in Cheshire, it's part of a multi-use trail that was once the Farmington Canal. The canal was also known as the New Haven and Northampton Canal, which was a private canal built in the early 19th century to provide water transportation from New Haven into the interior of Connecticut, Massachusetts and beyond. The canal only operated from 1828 to 1848, then trains became the preferred form of transportation. At that time it was it was converted to a railroad. Lock 12 is the only restored lock remaining today, but the Farmington Canal Heritage Greenway covers a route of approximately 84 miles from  New Haven, CT to Northampton, MA. Over half has been developed as a paved trail for non-motorized recreation and commuting. 

May 28, 2018

May 23-24 - West Branch Angler Resort

“You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.” —Beverly Sills
Stan loves to fish, so we decided to take a few days and stay at the West Branch Angler Resort, about 80 miles south of Ithaca. The lodge sits on the bank of the West Branch of the Delaware river, located on the New York Pennsylvania border. We had two beautiful days exploring the countryside...one on foot and the other drifting down the river. 
Although Stan didn’t catch anything (everywhere has a new learning curve), we had a wonderful time. The weather was perfect and the scenery was pretty. We couldn't have asked for anything more.
Looking towards our cabin (we are the middle cabin) 
The inside of our cabin 
The views from our porch 
The River Run Restaurant at the lodge 
The view from the restaurant deck
Stan fished from the river bank the first day 
The second day we rented a drift boat and floated down the river from Stilesville to the resort 
Some of the sights along the river 
Our boat...at the end of the day.
Here's a video of small section of the river. 

May 22, 2018

May 18 - Hammondsports, NY

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”  – Eleanor Roosevelt

Since it was a nice day we decided to take a drive over to Keuka Lake and check out the little town of Hammondsport. This cute little village sits at the south end of Keuka (Q ka) Lake, which is two lakes west of Cayuga Lake. Keuka Lake is one of the few Y-shaped lakes in the world and considered by many to be the most scenic of the Finger Lakes...we definitely thought it was amazingly picturesque. Hammondsport was voted "Coolest Small Town in America" by readers of Budget Travel. It too is very picturesque with historic homes and buildings. The town square is filled with restaurants, boutiques, art galleries and antique shops. There are several museums in the area and many wineries that have wonderful views of the lake.

We spent the morning wandering through the shops along the square and exploring the waterfront before we had lunch. Then we spent a few hours enjoying The Finger Lakes Boating Museum. The museum traces the history of boat-building in the Finger Lakes dating back over 100 years. It's located in several historic buildings that were once part of the original Taylor Wine Company. Later in the afternoon we drove up the west side of the lake enjoying the views and a few local wineries.

Hammondsport, New York
Depot Park in Hammondsport on Keuka Lake
Looking up the lake from Depot Park
Finger Lake Boating Museum
Views of the lake from the western shore
A little Methodist Church we found on our drive to Hammondsport...everything in this area of the country is so beautiful.

May 20, 2018

May 17 - Cascadilla Gorge Trail

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

Upstate New York...so many lakes, so many cute towns, so many wineries, so many waterfalls, so many trails and so many beautiful places to explore. A beautiful day means we go out and play, so today we rode our bikes up to the Cascadilla Gorge (in town) and enjoyed the gorgeous hike that follows the gorge along Cornell's Campus.

May 18, 2018

Taughannock State Park

“I would rather own little and see the world than own the world and see little of it.” ― Alexander Sattler

Taughannock Falls State Park is a 750-acre park located on the western shore of Cayuga Lake. It was created in 1925 and many improvements were made in the 1930s. The park's namesake waterfall is one of the outstanding natural attractions of the Northeast. Taughannock Falls plunges 215 feet past rocky cliffs that tower nearly 400 feet above the gorge. Gorge and rim trails offer spectacular views from above the falls and from below at the end of the gorge trail. Campsites and cabins overlook Cayuga Lake, with marina, boat launch and beach nearby. A multi-use trail for hiking and cross-country skiing, winds past sledding slopes and natural skating ponds. The park offers organized activities including tours through the gorge and summer concerts along the lakefront.

There are a few stories on what the name Taughannock means. One translation suggests that the name is derived from a combination of Iroquois and Algonquin terms meaning "great fall in the woods". An alternate theory suggests that the name may refer to a Lenni Lenape (Delaware) chief named Taughannock who died near the falls during a battle.

The Taughannock Creek was used as a source of power for mills and a gun factory in the early 19th century. In the 1870s, steamboats, railroads and Victorian hotels were built in the region to serve tourists who traveled to view the falls, one of them was the Inn at Taughannock.

Taughnnock Creek looking towards the falls
Taughnnock Creek looking towards the lake 
In addition to Taughannock Falls, two additional waterfalls are located along Taughannock Creek within the park. A 20-foot cascade, known as Little or Lower Falls, is located downstream of Taughannock Falls, while the 100-foot Upper Falls are found upstream of Taughannock Falls.
Taughnnock Falls last winter
Taughnnock Falls during the spring melt
Taughnnock Falls this week
The park near the lake
The marina
Looking through the park to the Inn at Taughnnock (where we had a fantastic Mother's Day brunch)
Park map (click on photo to enlarge)