Used to be a ‘new’ Jersey Girl   : now A Colorado Girl

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Trip to the Finger Lakes Day 1, Part 2: Watkins Glen State Park and Gorgeous Gorge

Actually, the name of the park is Watkins Glen State Park and Gorge. I added the the gorgeous part because it is. Truly Gorge-ous. If you are ever in the area, this is not to be missed! I can imagine in high tourist season the trail is very crowded and probably impossible to take photos without throngs of people. We had a lovely leisurely “stroll” (or should I say climb?) on this cloudy autumn day. Let me show you what it was like.

You entered the trail through a hole in the cliff. A sign at the beginning warned of over 800 steps ahead and promised 19 waterfalls. It didn’t lie.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The first bridge, Sentry Bridge, at the beginning of the trail after going through the hole in the cliff and up the first set of stairs.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The weather, although cloudy, was not cold. I was glad it wasn’t raining as the path was wet and slippery enough, especially where leaves had fallen. The trail immediately headed up and didn’t stop for one mile.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Little spills of water filled up pools with walls carved smooth by centuries.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


The first big waterfall was Cavern Cascade.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Here is Rick to give you some perspective of scale.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


This photo is taken standing at the side of the waterfall looking back down the canyon.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The canyon was narrow as it twisted its way up and up. The rock walls towered above our heads, cutting out whatever feeble sunlight was available.  Water seeped from the rock surface above and sprinkled down upon us as we walked underneath, making the trail slippery in spots. I found myself sheltering the camera lens from the watery drips from above fairly often. Onward up the seemingly endless stairs we went.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Around every turn in the trail were scenes to delight the senses.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


The best waterfall was saved for last: Rainbow Falls and its Glen of Pools. Shangri-La immediately came to my mind.


Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Water just poured off the face of the cliff in a delicate shower. Imagine had it been raining!

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

These were taken behind it.

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


At the top!

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


Instead of making our way back down all those 800 or so slippery stairs, we decided to take the rim trail back along the top of the gorge.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


The woods were beautiful!

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey


And last, I leave you with the view looking down from the suspension bridge over the gorge. See the trail to the left? It’s a long way down! Hope you’re not afraid of heights!

 

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

After making our way back down to the car, we drove up the west side of Seneca Lake to stop for wine tasting and a late lunch at Glenora Vineyards. Their wines were very good, both the reds and the whites. Unfortunately the lunch in their restaurant was not very good. Very disappointing, but we did order their cheese sampler of local farmstead cheeses to take back to our room with us for our dinner which turned out to be good, but I still think Rick can make better cheeses than some of them! The goat cheese which came from Lively Run Goat Dairy (which we had passed near Trumansburg) was the best of all. Had I known when we passed the sign pointing down a side road that they were open to visits we would have stopped!

Another wine tasting (a disappointing one), then we headed back to our room at the Arbor House, thereby concluding your tour of Day 1. Did you have fun? Do your legs ache?

Comments:

I am absolutely speechless! The leaves on the rocks look like someone sprinkled confetti on them.  You and Rick are the luckiest people to be able to find these places and we are so lucky you share them with us.  I’m too old and do not have the stamina I’m sure is needed but because of you I can climb the stairs over and over and keep enjoying.

Thanks so much,
Marie

Marie, so glad you enjoyed the trip! I’m not sure it’s something I would want to do every day (climbing all those stairs) but like you said, I can climb the stairs over and over without the physical effort!

I’m overwhelmed by your beautiful photos!

Mary, thank you so much! However, it’s the place that is beautiful so all credit goes to Mother Nature!

I’m ready to MOVE there!  Thanks for sharing about somewhere I didn’t even know existed!

Yes, my legs ache just thinking about it!  Really beautiful!

Elizabeth, me too!

Jan, the after effects of all that climbing were not as bad as I thought they were going to be!

Wow! Every image is completely stunning and beautiful. Can’t imagine this place could ever be more beautiful than right now in the fall.

Wow!!!

hehe heh ... word verification is “higher.”

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