Finally made it to the Adirondacks! They have beckoned from the nearby Finger Lakes of Central NY but we could never detach from Ithaca long enough to visit. They started in earnest about 3 hours northeast of Ithaca, about 2 hours after Syracuse and I’m still trying to pinpoint what makes this region feel so different than the Finger lakes. More rugged, dense woods, dark wood and log cabins, sparkling lakes with the beach at road level. Ithaca is more bucolic farms and pastures high surrounded by wooded hills, above the deep narrow finger lakes, old gingerbread farm houses made of brick or stone, tidy farmsteads.
We stopped briefly in the rugged resort Adirondacks town in Speculator (gotta love that name) where we found a gorgeous little public park beside a small lake, dotted with yes, heavy wood log Adirondacks chairs and benches. (The real deal, not plastic knockoffs.) the park was named after the boxer Gene Tunney who had a trading camp in town.
We found a rustic mini mart with a long line for the one bathroom. I asked the bored looking clerk if there was another option and voila, we were at public bathrooms (line-free) a half block away. The leaves were far more colorful, with splashes of red and orange and purple. The roads we drive on to get to vermont were so backwoods that I checked my google maps to make sure it wasn’t set on “no highways.” There simply weren’t any or many.
On the way back to Ithaca, we drove backroads along the western shore of Lake George which was lovely and rustic…until we got to the resort town of Lake George, which was over touristed. Then we drove diagonally south east, stopping briefly in the pretty college town of Cazenovia. We met Myra and Mike at Salt Point Brewery which was having an October fest celebration, with outdoor dining, a band, beer, pizza, brats and an amazing sunset.