We really liked this region of New York State. In ancient times, glaciers followed the course of river valleys in this hilly area. The ice cut deeper channels and when it receded it left its debris at the southern ends of the valleys effectively forming natural dams. These cuts then filled up with water forming long, narrow, and deep lakes that somewhat have the appearance of fingers. The views from the hilltops are spectacular. The very deep lakes help to provide an environment very good for the growing of grapes. There are many vineyards in the area which are a tourist draw as well.
We hiked the gorge of Watkins Glen Stare Park with its many waterfalls. The trail leads you behind a couple of them. If we were doing it over, we would have started on the upper end and walked down instead of hiking up the gorge – there are over 800 steps going up the trail. We drove over the short way to Watkins Glen International raceway. We couldn’t get in the grounds as a car club had rented the facility for the day. This coming weekend will be NASCAR at the Glen, one of only two road circuits that NASCAR runs.
We drove on over to Taughannock Falls. Shown below left is what they would have looked like with a full creek of water flowing over them. The drop is even taller than at Niagara. At the right is what we saw in this summer’s dry conditions.
We then toured Ithaca a bit including Cornell University, high above Cayuga’s waters. The Finger Lakes area is one we could see returning to some day and spending more time exploring.
Our pictures from the Finger Lakes are at: https://picasaweb.google.com/116107386675555024952/FingerLakes