New England Vacation – Day 3
If you missed out on days 1 and 2, you can catch up here:
Day 3 of our vacation saw us at a hardware store in Ithaca at 7:30 in the morning desparately searching for a part to fix Harland’s tripod which had malfunctioned. Harland takes the majority of his pics with his camera on a tripod so it was truly an urgent matter. We finally found a part that would work, Yay!! Back to the car we went to attach it to the tripod,
and we headed out for the day.
As we drove down the road we would see signs at the entrance of every town with the date the town was founded.
These were some head-turning dates for our eyes. Most of the towns in Kansas were founded post-Civil War.
About 8:30am that morning, we arrived at our first stop for the day, Buttermilk Falls, just southwest of Ithaca. Buttermilk Creek descends about 500 feet through a series of waterfalls and cascades in a narrow valley. We stopped at one of the upper falls near Lake Treman.
Harland settled in alongside Buttermilk creek to take pics. I decided though that the other side of the creek looked like a better vantage point. With my camera backpack strapped on and carrying my tripod in one hand and video camera in the other, I walked downstream a ways but didn’t find a good place to cross. Oh, what I wouldn’t have given for my manure boots back in Kansas. Resigned to taking a hike, I walked up the trail, across a bridge, over a dam, back on the trail, then back off the trail again when it didn’t go the direction I wanted. Then I carefully picked my way down a steep rocky hill through the woods and brush (hey, I grew up in Missouri – I know how to bushwhack!) finally breaking out of the woods on the opposite creek bank from Harland. What I won’t do for a good vantage point.
I set up my tripod and camera and got to work. First, some stills:
Then I took a short video:
Harland did some bushwhacking too and joined me on my side of the creek.
When we had thoroughly documented the falls, we packed up our gear and retraced our steps in reverse back to the car. You know, when you go down a really steep hill, you have to go back up it again on the way back, carrying the same heavy gear. We paused several times on our climb to pant like dogs before finally reaching the top. The rest of the trail was relatively level and soon we returned to Black Beauty, our rental car. We drank a lot of water (it was hot that day), read the sign near the restroom about the local rabid raccoons (hmm, nice to know), used the restroom, and then got back in the car and turned on the air conditioning full blast.
We headed down the road, ate lunch somewhere along the way, and then made for our next stop, Robert Treman State park were we toured an old grain mill and visited the waterfall behind it that used to power the mill.
First we toured the mill:
The mill used to be filled with machinery driven by water power from the nearby creek. Some of the machinery is still there.
In the old days New York was a big wheat growing state, and each year after harvest, farmers would take their wheat to their local mill to be ground into flour. It was kind of a vacation for farmers and they would camp out nearby and socialize with other folks.
Anyway, we wandered about the mill looking at the old equipment and little details caught my eye, like sunlight through the windows,
and old hand-forged nails in the floor.
Hand forged nails are easy to spot because they have square heads, not round.
Don’t you love old time ways of fixing things? Got a hole in the floor? Just nail down a piece of sheet metal.
Love the old seating:
Looks like the above bench came out of an old train station doesn’t it?
After touring the mill, Harland took a seat outside on the porch overlooking the creek that used to provide water power to the mill.
We didn’t rest for long though as the falls beckoned.
First I took some pics:
Then I took a short video:
I finished documenting the waterfall, but by that time I had lost track of Harland. We had little or no cell signal when we were in the northeast, so calling or texting him didn’t work. So I found a place in the shade and waited.
But then I noticed some lovely mushrooms sprouting in the lawn. I changed my camera lens, and threw myself on the ground to commune with the two inch high fungi:
Look, a Mama and baby!
Finally Harland appeared and we headed back to Beauty where we unloaded our gear, turned on the air full blast, and headed out on the road.
At 4:30pm we stopped at a rest stop on the highway near Preble, NY.
I don’t know about you, but we don’t have rest-stops that resemble courthouses where we live. Very nice.
We kept driving, passing through Syracuse and finally stopping for the night at Oswego, NY. After we checked in, we walked to the downtown area looking for a place to have supper. We finally settled on a Thai food place. We both ordered meals that were supposed to be “mild” and not to spicy. My meal was delish, but Harland’s was red hot. I shared mine with him and afterwards we walked back to our lodging place for the night where we rested our weary heads and were soon asleep.
Up next: Day 4. We work our way north into upstate New York. Along the way I dip my toes into Lake Ontario, we get a couple of huge cones at an old ice cream shop, and eat supper at an Italian restaurant. Our trip was quickly becoming an opportunity to eat every variety of food and as much of it as possible.