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

August Updates

"I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity." -Albert Einstein

August has flown by and the fall weather has already arrived. We've had a pretty mild summer temperature wise. Unfortunately those temperatures were kept in check by all the scattered rain showers we've had. It seems like we get a little sun and a little rain everyday.

We filled as many nice days as we could this month with activities. We took the boat to the farmers market when we could, we went to the Glorious Garlic Festival in Geneva, did a little hiking and enjoyed a few picnics. On rainy days I painted and Stan played the guitar...all wonderful activities we love.

Enfield Falls
One of the prettiest places to hike is only a few miles from our marina. Robert H. Treman State Park offers some nice trails that lead to 12 waterfalls. This time we started at the upper entrance to the park. We took the upper rim trail to these stairs and then followed the gorge trail back to our car.
A look at the gorge trail from the top of the stairs that lead down to the river.
Our first  glimpse at Lucifer Falls.
At the bottom of Lucifer Falls.
Part of the upper Gorge Trail. (The Devil's Kitchen)
Our picnic area.
On our way home from the Ithaca Farmers Market.
We also like taking our boat up to the Boatyard Grill for dinner. It's our favorite place to eat around here.
We enjoyed a beautiful Sunday at the Glorious Garlic Festival where we tasted garlic, listened to music and had lunch.
We have always loved watching the hot air balloon, but this is the first time we've seen one this close.
Every day brings a different view from our deck...all beautiful.

Aug. 31 - Exploring Six Mile Creek

“Why fit in when you were born to stand out” —Dr. Seuss

We took advantage of a beautiful day to explore an area of Ithaca we haven't been to since 2017. We parked at Mulholland Wildflower Preserve and hiked up to what is called the second dam on Six Mile Creek. The water was very muddy and moving quickly from all the rain we've had. Once at the bottom of the dam we backtracked to a trail that took us to the top of the dam and the reservoir. At the top of the dam we found a great spot along the cliff to enjoy our picnic.
The bottom of the dam.
Part of the trail to the top of the dam.
The view of the top of the dam.
Our lunch spot.
Our lunch...homemade chicken salad, cheese, crackers, wine and cake.
The muddy reservoir above the second dam. This is where we saw kids swimming the first time we were here. One of our views during lunch.
Some of the interesting things we saw along the trail.
After lunch we made our way back to our car to leave our picnic basket and then explored the creek north of Giles St. We've been in the area for years and didn't realize this beautiful waterfall existed just a mile from downtown. 

Wells Falls, also known as the Businessman’s Lunch Falls, is 65 feet tall and drops in a series of four drops. Of these, the largest is a 30-foot man-made dam. It's located directly adjacent to an abandoned power plant. The Van Nattas Pumping Station was built in 1893 on the site of an old flour mill. It provided water for the city both for drinking and for fire stations. Over the years, the site grew as new pumps were added so it could create electricity. Since the 1940s, the station has sat abandoned next to Wells Falls creating one of the most unique waterfalls in New York.

The top of Wells Falls.
Hiking down the hill to the bottom of the falls.
Looking over the cliff to the road that leads to the falls. 
Looking back at the cliff where I took the photo above. We took this road back to Gile St. It was a bit easier than the route we took coming down.
The bottom of Wells Falls.

Aug. 17-20 Cayuga Lake Vacation

"The Lake....where families go to make memories." -Author Unknown
We spent this year's last family lake vacation at a nice house just south of Seneca Falls on Cayuga Lake. The weather was beautiful, but a bit too windy to spend time on the boat riding on the raft...no problem we found other things to do. We spent our first full day taking the boat through part of the Cayuga–Seneca Canal. This part of the New York canal system connects the Erie Canal to Cayuga Lake and Seneca Lake. It was built in 1818. Since we were already in Cayuga Lake we took everyone through C2 and C3 that leads to the town of Seneca Falls. These locks are a set of locks called a staircase or flight. We were lifted up a total of 49' from the Seneca River to Van Cleef Lake. Check out this old blog post to see how a lock works. We wandered around town a little and then had lunch before we headed back to the house.

The house
This house had a great movie and game room above the garage. The perfect place for a family movie night.
The kids get to the marina around lunch each time we rent a house. So we have a little time to fill before we can check in. This time we had lunch on the boat then rode bikes along the trails by the marina and played in the park.
After playing we stopped at the Sheldrake Point Winery to enjoy a little wine and a beautiful day.
We spent a lot of time at the house just hanging out together, relaxing, playing games, eating and celebrating Hattie's 4th birthday.
The view from the front porch was nice in the evening and in the morning.
On our way to Seneca Falls.
These boards are at each lock to inform boaters of their elevation and how far it is to the next lock.
Heading into lock C2. It lifted us up 24.5'.
Once inside we put a line around a cable so we could stay close to the side of the lock.

Once inside and ready the Lock Master closes the door and the water begins to fill the lock.
Going up!
Once we were through the two locks we were in Van Cleef Lake and right in the heart of Seneca Falls.
Everyone had a great time on the way home.
Graham was the captain most of the way back.
Our second full day was beautiful...but very windy. Kyle and Graham explored in the kayaks before we tried to have fun on the runabout. It was just too rough, so we played at home.
The waterfront was pretty and we had plenty of room to play, but it wasn't very nice for swimming. Luckily the weather was cool and we really didn't want to swim. 
Our traditional last night fire and s'mores. It's our way of saying goodbye to summer.