Tag Archives: Seneca Lake

The Finger Lakes, NY: Hiking Grimes Glen and an Airport Diner

Upstate New York is entirely underrated. In case you were wondering.

The region is associated with the three snowiest cities in the United States (Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse, thank you very much), but very little is it associated with the summer months!

Let’s keep it that way, eh? I like driving on an empty highway.

It is beautiful – sunshine, blue skies, budding vineyards and lots of big yellow fields that reminded me of Scotland!

A month or so ago, we spent the weekend in the Finger Lakes and spent the morning in Naples, NY. It’s right next to Rome, NY and Italy, NY.

No, really.

We had breakfast at the Middlesex Airport Diner – a small building on a small meadow that small planes fly in and out of.

While our waiter informed us we were a bit late for the usual plane sightseeing (what? 11am is too late for breakfast?) we still managed to see a few of them.

After breakfast we drove to Grimes Glen.

Grimes Glen is a hiking path in a glen. No surprise there.

It has a one mile creek walk up to some beautiful waterfalls.

Go ahead and swallow that vanity. Put on a pair of ugly nature sandals and walk all the way up the creek! (Some currents are a bit strong, but most places weren’t deeper than 12 inches of water. I was carrying my SLR around my neck).

We went on a Saturday morning and there was a fair amount of hiking traffic.

via flickr debpaul2010

Next time I think I’ll leave my camera in the car and bring my swimsuit.

There were lots of kids playing in the water. We went over Memorial Day weekend, so the water was nippy, but enjoyable! We only hiked to the first waterfall, so we were only going for an hour or two.

We spent the rest of the beautiful Finger Lakes afternoon doing a little bit of fishing, dock sitting and boating.

And of course a little bit of this:

The lazy, hazy summer afternoon was made for me!

What’s your favorite lazy, summer activity?

Meet George Jetson…’s Strawberry Patch

While I was visiting my family in the Finger Lake last week I went hydroponic strawberry picking… Hydroponiwhat?

Hydroponic. As in hydra (water) and ponein (labor).

Still not making sense? Wikipedia defines hydroponics as “a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions, in water, without soil.”

Still not making sense?

THIS is their strawberry patch looks like.

No muddy sneakers. No squished strawberry stain on your bum. No bugs. No kneeling/squatting and moving over with your little red flag every 18 inches.

My hands didn’t even get dirty! They make you cut the strawberries with a pair of scissors. And you have to use anti-bacterial soap before you can go in.

You are supposed to cut as long a stem as possible, because the longer the stem is the more energy the fruit has. Thus, lasting longer.

Why hydroponic farming? Well, we spoke to the owner for a little while. Basically, the method he uses requires a LOT less water and he can better protect the fruit from diseases and pesticides.

Oddly enough, I thought we were at the tail-end of their season’s pickings. But then the owners told us they just opened last week. While most strawberry patches are in-season in June, the hydroponic farm is in season from June through Halloween!!

They are smaller than normal strawberries, but delicious! A pop of sweet, fresh flavor.

(P.S. Jellies (as in shoes, not strawberry jam) are coming back. My friend Abs saw them and got them for me. Woot! Thanks Abs!)

My official review: It was lovely. While the slaving under the sun in the dust and accidentally sitting on old strawberries is nostalgic (and still a good time), this was quick, clean and easy! If old-school berry pickin’ is the Goodwill clearance rack, hydroponic berry picking is Macy’s.

Have you heard of hydroponic farming before? Have you ever picked hydroponic strawberries?