Posts Tagged ‘canandaigua lake’

Take A Hike - Finger Lakes available at www.footprintpress.com includes FL Nat'l Forest & more.

Take A Hike – Finger Lakes available at

The Nature Conservancy will dedicate 107 forested acres on Nov. 28 that will become part of the conservancy’s West Hill Preserve. The preserve, which now totals 550 acres, is along Seman Road in the town of Naples, Ontario County, near the southern tip of Canandaigua Lake. Part of the Finger Lakes Trail passes through the property.

Folks from TD Bank, a U.S. banking enterprise owned by a financial corporation based in Toronto, will attend the dedication of the Hickory Ridge parcel. TD Bank has provided funds to pay for this acquisition and other Nature Conservancy work in the Finger Lakes, as a green-minded offset to the bank’s use of tree-consuming paper.

source: D&C

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Written by Marci Diehl, Democrat & Chronicle, link to original post
Finger Lakes Land Trust acquires new properties to conserve for nature walks, birding adventuresIt’s some of the most unspoiled, spectacularly beautiful and ecologically important land in the state. And if all goes according to plan, it will be accessible to the public for low-impact uses like hiking, kayaking, fishing and bird-watching.

Take A Paddle - Finger Lakes  available at www.footprintpress.com includes West River & more.

Take A Paddle – Finger Lakes available at http://www.footprintpress.com includes West River & more.

In the past year, the Finger Lakes Land Trust has acquired two important pieces of land overlooking Canandaigua Lake and adjacent to the West River — the lake’s principal tributary — adding to the group’s growing list of acquisitions and conservation easements. The goal is to link a crescent of land extending from Bare Hill southward through South Hill to High Tor and the highlands surrounding Naples.

This is serene land that is teeming with wildlife, forests, waterfalls and flora — and facing watershed and potential erosion problems if developed. The proposal to create a Canandaigua Lake water trail and birding trail could prevent some of these issues for generations to come.

The newest acquisition is a 68-acre property that encompasses a 390-foot cove beach on the east side of Canandaigua Lake, along with extensive woodlands on Bare Hill. Last year, the trust acquired 13 acres adjacent to the entrance to the Bare Hill State Unique Area. And in 2011, Constellation Brands donated 64 acres of an abandoned vineyard in the town of Italy at the south end of the lake — land that the National Audubon Society designated an “Important Bird Area.” Over the summer, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service will cultivate native grasses to create a grassland area connecting with the state’s emergent wetlands of the West River.

Take A Hike - Finger Lakes available at www.footprintpress.com includes Bare Hill & more.

Take A Hike – Finger Lakes available at
http://www.footprintpress.com includes Bare Hill & more.

The more that people can see land and experience it, the more connected they become to conserving it, says Andrew Zepp, executive director of the trust. The organization’s goal, he says, is to “work cooperatively with landowners and local communities to maintain the character of this area, while enhancing opportunities for outdoor education and recreation.”

Connecting these preserved lands to the DEC’s High Tor Wildlife Management Area is significant. High Tor’s 6,100 acres encompass habitats, wooded hills, cliffs and marshlands in the West River Valley — along with South Hill’s 1,000 acres of wooded hillsides.

And the West River contains one of the largest wetlands in the state — a popular area for kayakers and canoeists.

Bruce Lindsay has managed 700 acres on the top of South Hill for 43 years, and he sees some species actually returning to former habitats, including porcupines, black bears, coyotes, foxes and wild turkeys.

“Turkey vultures with five-foot wing spans soar above the hill,” Lindsay says. “On rare occasions, eagles are seen here. Goldfinch, blue birds, bobolinks and the rare indigo bunting fill the fields. It’s a birder’s paradise.”

The two southeastern hills of the lake are largely undeveloped. Naples resident Kevin Armstrong donated 32 acres of woodland in the area, on steep property along South Hill above the West River.

“There are many people who would see the land as something to be developed just for the views alone,” Armstrong says.

Lindsay, too, is passionate about protecting this land the Seneca people held sacred.

“In the 21st century, we still have an opportunity to ‘do no harm,’ ” he says. “There are vast areas surrounding this lake that still are pristine. The challenge is to do no harm for the future of pure water, appropriate but not unchecked development, and, yes, just space to enable natural beauty to be the essence.”

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Democrat & Chronicle

Take A Hike - Finger Lakes (includes Bare Hill) www.footprintpress.com

Take A Hike – Finger Lakes (includes Bare Hill)

The Finger Lakes Land Trust has acquired a 68-acre property that includes 390 feet of undeveloped shoreline on the east side of Canandaigua Lake in the town of Middlesex, Yates County. The property adjoins Bare Hill—a scenic landmark that rises more than 800 feet above the lake.

The parcel, formerly owned by Beverly Reed and her brother, Charles, was sold to the Land Trust at significantly less than its appraised fair market value. The Land Trust launched a fund-raising campaign earlier this spring to help pay for the acquisition of the property as well as its maintenance and upkeep.

The project is part of the Land Trust’s ongoing regional capital campaign that seeks to raise $5 million to protect undeveloped shoreline, sensitive stream corridors and other lands important to water quality, wildlife habitat and scenic views. To date, the Land Trust has raised 85 percent of the goal.

The Reed acquisition consists of separate tax parcels and includes two single family homes, which will be sold. The Land Trust’s conservation plan for the property includes creating public accessibility to the lake for low-impact uses such as kayaking, hiking, and bird watching.

This latest project will be the Land Trust’s third acquisition on Bare Hill. In December, the organization acquired 13 acres adjacent to the entrance to Bare Hill State Unique Area. In 2007, the group partnered with the Town of Gorham and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to acquire 96 acres of woodland bordering East Lake Road across from the Rushville water plant.

Take A Paddle - Finger Lakes (includes West River) www.footprintpress.com

Take A Paddle – Finger Lakes (includes West River) http://www.footprintpress.com

Elsewhere within the Canandaigua Lake Watershed, the Land Trust has acquired land and conservation easements to secure scenic farmland in the Town of Canandaigua, rugged gorges in the Towns of Naples and Italy, and woodlands bordering the West River and High Tor Wildlife Management Area.

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Going for a walk or hike are perfect ways to benefit from the warm weather. The Finger Lakes can be an incredible place to spend time with nature. The guidebook Take A Hike – Family Walks in New York’s Finger Lakes Region details these options and many more:

A perfect place to take a walk is along a beautiful lake in the Finger Lakes. Seneca Lake in Geneva and Canandaigua Lake in Canandaigua are only two of the lakes that offer walking paths along the shoreline for the public.

The Keuka Lake Outlet Trail runs along the canal that connects Seneca Lake in Dresden to Keuka Lake in Penn Yan. This trail welcomes bicyclers to its seven and a half mile journey that gradually drops 270 feet. If you are an athletic bicycle rider that wants a challenging incline start in Penn Yan. However, if you are an average rider you may want to start in Dresden and head toward Penn Yan, that way gravity is on your side.

Watkins Glen State Park is a perfect place for a hiking adventure. The main attractions at this state park are the trails through the Glen, specifically the Gorge Trail. The trails take you through tunnels, over bridges and under waterfalls. Not only is this a great place for hiking but also a great place to enjoy the scenery. The park is home to numerous stunning waterfalls and layers of rocks.  You’ll get hooked on waterfalls and will want to find more. The guidebook 200 Waterfalls In Central & Western New York – A Finders’ Guide is just the ticket.

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By Sue Freeman

“Flat water” is the technical lingo for docile streams that drift along with a gentle or nonexistent current. Without major drops in elevation, they don’t plummet over waterfalls or roil in rapids. You can drift down them with a leisurely paddle and not worry too much about sharp turns or impediments along the way. Of course, even the most docile stream can get a blown down tree from a storm or become an angry torrent with enough rain or snow melt. Generally, if you’re looking for a docile stream you should limit your paddling to summer and fall.

Docile streams also lend themselves to two-way travel. Without a strong current you can paddle both upstream and downstream. This means you don’t have to hassle with spotting a car or arranging for a shuttle.

The Finger Lakes region teems with docile streams that wander through gorgeous countryside. Here are a few of my favorites:

  1. Circumnavigate an island.  Using a section of the Erie Canal and a remote loop of the Seneca River you can paddle 10.7 miles around Howland Island. This is part of the Northern Montezuma Wildlife Management Area so be sure to take your binoculars for the excellent bird watching opportunities.
  2. The Erie Canal today is wide and deep – dredged years ago to allow passage of barges. But remnants of the old, smaller canal still exist. One such segment runs between Dewitt and Canastota and is called the Old Erie Canal. You can paddle all 17 miles or choose a smaller segment. Along the way you will traverse through aqueducts over creeks and have to duck under bridges. Just like the famous Erie Canal song says, it’s “low bridge everybody down.”
  3. Rent boats at Puddledockers in Ithaca and paddle the Cayuga Lake Inlet. There’s much to look at along the way and you can even stop at the docks enroute to enjoy

    Paddle in serenity among wildlife at West River Marsh

    a meal, a drink, or ice cream.

  4. 4. West River Marsh at the south end of Canandaigua Lake is a lazy stream that can be paddled year-round, except when frozen. Enjoythe peace and quiet tucked below the towering hills that surround Canandaigua Lake.

Maps and details for each of these docile streams and others can be found in the guidebook “Take A Paddle – Finger Lakes New York Quiet Water for Canoes & Kayaks.”

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Naples is known for its grape festival. Grape stomping, grape pies, sips of luscious wines – it’s all wondrous fun in the fall. But, Naples has another claim to fame – one that is centered squarely in summer, and one that I find more fun than eating a grape pie. And, I’m a grape pie lover!

grimesglenTo me, Naples is synonymous with creekwalking. Off the Bristol Valley hills run 4 streams that converge in the Naples Valley to fill Canandaigua Lake. They provide a summer playground for those of us with a sense of adventure and a willingness to get wet.

The most well know is Grimes Glen which houses Grimes Creek as it flows directly into the village of Naples. Splash into the one foot-deep stony creek bed and head upstream in the cool water. In less than half a mile a waterfall will crash 60 feet down a side tributary to join Grimes Creek. In a little over half a mile you’ll find another 60-foot waterfall, but his one sits a bit off kilter in Grimes Creek and blocks your upstream passage (see photo).  No matter.  Play in the spray then head back downstream having enjoyed a hot summer day.

Creekwalking is for those with adventurous spirits. You will get wet – it’s the objective of creekwalking. The footing can be precarious. Mosses and lichens make rocks slippery and you have to watch carefully where you place each footstep. The reward is finding new delights with every bend of the creek.

On the opposite side of Route 21 in Naples you’ll find Tannery Creek. Practice at Grimes Glen, and then go tackle Tannery Creek. In this stream you’ll climb a succession of small waterfalls until you reach a 40-foot-tall one and have to turn around.

Further honing your creekwalking skills, try your hand (or should that be foot?) at Clark Gully next. Then, the piece-de-resistance: Parish Glen (a.k.a. Conklin Gully). This place is for true adventurers. The climbs can be steep, with few handholds. You never know what you’ll find around the next bend, but usually it’s another waterfall. Each is different, and each is spectacular in its own right.

Climbing up waterfalls as you creekwalk, such as is necessary at Conklin Gully, can be scary. Turning around and climbing back down is even scarier. Never climb up beyond your level of comfort. The good news with Conklin Gully is that if you make it to the top, you can follow a trail back down.

Bring out the inner adventurer in you and head to Naples this summer for some unforgettable adventures. All the information you need to find and enjoy these creekwalks can be found in “200 Waterfalls in Central & Western New York – A Finders’ Guide” at www.footprintpress.com, or call 1-800-431-1579.

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