After Pennsylvania, we spent a week camping in the Finger lakes area of New York. The Finger lakes get their name because they are long and skinny like fingers and look like the shape of a hand on a map. Carved by glaciers, there are eleven of various sizes and are located in the western part of the state. We camped near Cayuga Lake which is the second biggest of the Finger lakes. Our site was located in a secluded area out in the country with plenty of space to wander around the fields and ponds of the RV park and enjoy open views. Above is a picture from the top of the park looking down on our side of the campground. You can see just a tiny bit of Cayuga Lake. This is a beautiful area that we visited some years ago before our days of RVing. At that time, we flew from California to Buffalo, rented a car and then drove around visiting several of the lakes and seeing many waterfalls the area is known for.
We had one of our first glimpses of Cayuga Lake when we visited the Busy Bee Market and Cafe for breakfast one morning. The views of the lake were so nice. Cayuga is the longest of the Finger lakes at a little under 40 miles. There are homes along parts of it and it is such a scenic location that you can’t help thinking how great it would be to live there. I was especially taken with this cute little boat house sitting on the edge near a dock. It had one comfy room full of chairs and couches that looked out on the water.
Here is another photo of the lake, a restful and relaxing spot.
One day we took a short drive to Taughannock Falls State Park located next to Cayuga. The centerpiece of the park are the falls, which drop 215 feet inside the huge 400 foot gorge. The name Taughannock comes from the Native American Algonquin language meaning “full of trees.” We first viewed the waterfall from the overlook. You can really see how immense the canyon walls are from this viewpoint. Far below are the tiny dots of people near the front of the waterfall. After driving down to the main area of the park, we would be walking to that area next.
From the main parking area you can either walk on a path through the woods for a mile or on the wide stream bed of Taughannock Creek to the falls. Near the beginning of the walk are small falls flowing over large blocks of rock creating a pretty cascade.
As you walk you will see a variety of rock formations in the stream bed like in the picture below.
You could access the creek at different points on the main trail, so if you got tired of walking on the rock or through the water you could get back on the trail. Here is a view of the creek bordered by towering cliffs on one side. It was great to see so many people enjoying the water on this warm summer day.
The very large pool at the base of the falls would be a great swimming area, but is off limits as large pieces from the surrounding cliffs could fall at any time and cause injuries which has actually happened. The waterfall is hard to photograph because it is in shadow, but I did my best.
After our trek to the falls, we hung around in the park by the lake. I really enjoyed the massive stone benches like the one I am resting on, created from the slabs of rock so prevalent at the park.
I hope you enjoyed a look at this part of New York State. In the next blog, more on our Finger Lakes visit!