Friday, September 2, 2011

Summer in NY: Ithaca is Gorges

Wine tasting on Cayuga Lake
Taughannock Falls, Ithaca
After my two week stay in Rochester, Jaap flew into New York for another two weeks together. I wanted to spend some quality time with my parents, so we decided to take a little vacation to the Finger Lakes region. 
Of all the places that we have traveled to, I still think my home of upstate New York is one of the most beautiful regions I have ever seen. I'm lucky to have grown up in the Hudson Valley and the Catskills. I studied in Ithaca, which is part of the Finger Lakes Region in western New York. It's home to many gorges, wineries, and tons of hippies. I love going back and enjoying it all over again. 

We went Ithaca to enjoy mostly nature, some light hiking, and of course wine tasting. The Finger Lakes are home to over 200 wineries and they are 'somewhat known' for their white wine varieties, especially Riesling. 
Picnic lunch at Goose Watch Winery
We visited some wineries on Cayuga Lake (near Ithaca) the first day. The weather was not so nice so we weren't able to do any hiking. But, Deb and Bob came down from Rochester to meet us for dinner. That was a nice treat!
The Gorge
On our second day we drove to Watkins Glen on Seneca Lake. The weather improved and we were able to do nice stroll up the gorge. It's an easy climb with great views of waterfalls. I love this place. We used to come camping here when I was little and I'm happy that Jaap got to see it. It brings back lots of good memories.
Watkins Glen
And now for the good wineries...We visited some nice ones on Cayuga Lake the first day, but the wine at our new favorite place, Chateau Lafayette Reneau, was far superior. This place allows you to sample all 18 of their wines. Fun for us! I'm glad Pop was the designated driver that day. Jaap and I were able to enjoy all 18. :)
Me & Pop sampling at Atwater Vineyards
View of Seneca Lake at Chateau Lafayette Reneau
Jaap's happy about his wine purchases.
Cascadilla Gorge, Ithaca
The last day of our trip we spent a little more time at some other gorges in Ithaca. My favorite gorge is Cascadilla, but unfortunately part of the trail is closed. It starts near downtown Ithaca and the hike takes you up to Cornell Univeristy's campus. We still got to enjoy some of it even though the water was running not as strong as usual. 
Before heading back home to Newburgh, we walked up to Taughannock Falls. The falls are running light, but still a beautiful walk. Ithaca was gorges. I wish I could rewind and do this trip all over again with my parents and Jaap, but on to the next adventure!

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