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June 21 – First Day of Summer

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax.” —Mark Black

The first day of summer in Ithaca was perfect…sunshine, low humidity and 75º. We started our morning with breakfast on the flybridge, just the way I like it…with a view of the peaceful harbor, the park and the beautiful green hills that surround Ithaca. Our marina is very quiet during the week since most people who have their boats here for the season live in the area and are only here on the weekends…although there are a few exceptions like us. 

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June 20 – Lucifer Falls

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“The only value we have as human beings is the risks we’re willing to take.” ―Earnest Hemingway
We woke to a beautiful day, so after breakfast on the flybridge, we decided to pack a lunch and head to Robert H.Terman State Park. We parked in the lower section of the park and took the Gorge Trail 2.25 miles up to Lucifer Falls and the old grits mill. Along the way we passed 12 waterfalls, including the magnificent Lucifer Falls that cascades beside a stone staircase and down 115 feet of rock face. The paved trail and stonewalls along the Gorge Trail were built between 1933 and 1942 by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).

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June 19 – We’re Back

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” ―Anaïs Nin

We’re back on the boat. We had a great week in Texas visiting with parents, kids, grandkids, siblings, cousins and friends. It was filled with hugs and kisses, lots of meals out and relaxing mornings on the back deck of Texas Pearl
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Weekend Updates

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“You can’t come back if you never go away.” —Unknown

Getting around to blogging gets difficult when you stay busy and on the go. We enjoyed Friday in Ithaca getting to know our dock mates and taking in a little of the annual Ithaca Festival…arts and crafts, food, music and a parade. Ithaca is a real eclectic town, so people watching is definitely a fun activity. People watching at the evening parade was more fun than the parade itself, but we gave up before the parade ended so we could have a nice dinner at Maxie’s. Everyone we’ve met in town has recommended it and didn’t disappoint. It’s definitely a place we’ll go back to. 
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Snow in June

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

If you look across our marina you might think it’s snowing…snow in June? The June snows are white and fluffy, but warm and cottony rather than cold and crystalline. The snows of June consist of “cotton” from the cottonwood trees: small bits of cotton-like fibers enclosing a small green cottonwood seed. It’s the trees distribution agent, allowing the seeds to be dispersed as they are blown in the wind. 

Sometimes, especially near a stand of cottonwoods, there can be a flurry of cotton that resembles a light snow storm. But to this Texas girl the piles of fluff along the edges of the grass remind me of cotton. Like the bits of cotton that blow out of the cotton pickers and module builders in August and pile up along the road. 

The cotton blizzard typically lasts only a few weeks, and all is gone by July. They can be a nuisance sometimes clogging up waterways, filters, collecting inches deep in gutters, and turning into clumps of fibrous mass in the rain. These piles can sometimes be difficult to clear away.

These trees are Eastern Cottonwood, also called Eastern Poplar. Cottonwoods are some of the oldest known trees in existence. They are in the Willow family and like willows are fast growers. Their wood is generally weak and they are rather short lived as trees go, living usually only about eighty years or so. But due to their rapid growth they can provide quick shade in parks and recreational areas.


June 1 – Fall Creek Gorge Hike

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest.” – Pema Chödrön

Ithaca promotes itself as having 150 waterfalls within ten miles of town…we’ve seen 13 so far. So blog followers, you might get tired of seeing waterfalls this summer, but I hope not. Today we rode our bikes up to Ithaca Falls and the Fall Creek Gorge. In the early 1800’s, half-dozen mills were operating near Ithaca Falls and you can see their ruins along the south bank of the creek. The plunge pool of Ithaca Falls is famous among anglers for lake-run trout and salmon. 
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May 31 – Cascadilla Gorge Hike

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.” ―Bill Bryso

It was a beautiful morning (it did rain this afternoon), so after Stan tried his luck at fishing again, we road our bikes to the trail head of the Cascadilla Gorge. This gorge is located in downtown Ithaca and is one of the most picturesque gorges in the Finger Lakes Region. The Cascadilla Gorge Trail connects the downtown area with the Cornell Campus. The trail ascends over 400 feet, carving through bedrock – shale, siltstone and sandstone – exposing sedimentary rocks that were deposited 400 million years ago. You can see ripple marks on the rock surface, which once was the muddy floor of an ancient ocean.
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May 30 – Ithaca, NY

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” – Socrates

Sorry it’s been awhile since I’ve posted. We’ve been settling into our summer home…meeting the neighbors, cleaning the boat, doing laundry, doing a little exploring and hiding from the rain. Mostly hiding from the rain. 

We got to explore the Ithaca Farmers Market on Saturday (pics when the weather is nicer). There’s a nice bike trail that runs from our marina in Allan H. Treman Park to the market at Steamboat Landing, but when the weather is nice we can go by dinghy. The market seemed wonderful but a little slow this weekend since it was wet and cold. I think we’ll enjoy having the market so close…lots of great booths and entertainment. 
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May 26 – Ithaca, NY

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

The Finger Lakes Region of New York State covers 9,000 square miles. It’s a wonderland of deep gorges, cascading waterfalls, sparkling lakes, and acres of forests, farms and vineyards. It includes miles of spectacular shoreline on 11 glacial lakes and one Great Lake. The 11 Finger Lakes from east to west are: Otisco Lake, Skaneateles Lake, Owasco Lake, Cayuga Lake, Seneca Lake, Keuka Lake, Canandaigua Lake, Honeoye Lake, Canadice Lake, Hemlock Lake, Conesus Lake.

The Finger Lakes are long and narrow, and mostly run north to south. The lakes’ shapes reminded early mapmakers of human fingers, and through the years the name stuck. Cayuga (435 feet deep) at 38 miles long and almost 67 square mile in total area is the largest. Seneca Lake at 618 feet deep is the deepest of the lakes is among the deepest in the United States; its bottom is well below sea level.  

The lakes originated as a series of northward-flowing streams, but southward movement of glaciers from the Hudson Bay area widened, deepened, and accentuated the existing river valleys. Glacial debris left behind by the receding ice, acted as dams, allowing lakes to form.  

The Finger Lakes area is New York’s largest wine producing region, with over 100 wineries and vineyards located around Seneca, Cayuga, Canandaigua, Keuka, Conesus, and Hemlock Lakes. Because of the lakes’ great depth, they provide a lake effect to the lush vineyards that border their shores. Retaining lingering summer warmth in the winter and winters cold in the spring (no wonder it’s still so cold here), the grapes are protected from disastrous spring frost during shoot growth and early frost before the harvest. The main grape varieties grown are Chardonnay, Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Vidal Blanc, and Seyval Blanc.

As soon as it warms up a bit and the rain slacks off we’ll be visiting some of the wineries in the area and finding some of the waterfalls that are so abundant around Ithaca.

Wineries in the Finger Lake region 

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May 25 – Home in Ithaca

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” ―Ralph Waldo Emerson

We did our last Eric Canal lock and one on the Cayuga-Seneca Canal today, then we cruised down Cayuga Lake to arrive in our summer slip in Ithaca…all in the rain, OF COURSE. We’re beginning to think the sun doesn’t shine around here very often. We’re getting excited about our summer in Ithaca, although it’ll be a little different than the way we usually spend our summer. We look forward to hiking, fishing, wine tasting, exploring up state New York and spending time with family in Pennsylvania. Stay tune for exciting new adventures.
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