Archive for the ‘Canoe or Kayak’ Category

Spring’s Wild Water Derby

April 28, 2011

It’s true.

Wild Water Derby pirates

It’s happening.

Spring is coming to the Finger Lakes. The buds are popping, the grass is now really, really green and growing and we have had our fair share of April Showers*.  Looking for one more sure sign of spring? That would have to be the Shortsville/Manchester Wild Water Derby – one of the largest paddling events in the northeast.

The Wild Water Derby is a local tradition in the spring. It all takes place along the Canandaigua Outlet  which flows north from the outlet of Canandaigua Lake all of the way to the Erie Canal. [get directions to the event]

The Wild Water Derby includes two days of (cold) water, racing, food, music, paddling, kayaks, rafts, some pirates and having a ton of fun. Teams can put in hours planning and constructing their rafts, because many ‘water vehicles’ at this race are home-made.  The homemade raft portion of the weekend is where the teams get “extra” points for creativity and humor, and it is a spectator favorite. Although it is considered a “racing” event, the number one priority is having a good time.

* SPECIAL NOTE: The Wild Water Derby is RESCHEDULED for MAY 21 & 22, 2011 – in the interest of participant and spectator safety.

Click here to see a short video created two years ago at the Wild Water Derby. “AJ checks out Manchester and interviews some of the teams before and some after ‘the Run’.”

Canadice – a Pristine Little Lake

April 5, 2011

We just got the Spring Issue of  Life in the Finger Lakes at the office. It is always a good read and we really love looking through it and learning that little extra tidbit about something familiar and sometimes something new.

This quarter, the magazine is celebrating their 10th year and the ‘A Look Back’ section highlights a page from their premier issue in the Summer of 2001. The article is titled “Finger Lakes Facts” and includes a map and some stats on each of the eleven Finger Lakes. See page 14. As an example, did you know that the elevation of Canadice Lake is the highest of all the Finger Lakes (1099 feet) or that the volume is 11 billion gallons?

These stats actually left me just a little high and dry. I felt like the stat should have read 11 billion gallons of pristine, crystal blue water…

Canadice Lake in the Finger Lakes

Canadice Lake looking to the north

The history of the Finger Lakes Region is equally appealing.  According to Native American legend, the lakes are the divine handprints of the Great Spirit. In blessing the land, the spirits outstretched hands were placed over the region leaving each finger-shaped impression. The hollows that were left quickly filled with crystal-clear water – thus the Finger Lakes were formed. And then there is also the glacial effect to be considered in the formation of these truly unique lakes. Click here to read more about the Lakes.

Perhaps named with a bit of humor, the Native American translation for Canadice is “Long Lake” and while the lake is quite tiny, it has some of the most natural beauty of all the Finger Lakes. As one of the water supply sources for area residents, this lake is restricted to car top boats only and limited to 10 hp motors. It is easy to imagine Canadice Lake in its original, natural state while gliding the lake in a kayak or canoe and just listening to the dip of your paddle into the water. This is my idea of ahhh…

Submitted by Meg Colombo

Finger Lakes FOUND!

July 19, 2010

Sailing on Canandaigua Lake

On Friday morning, July 16th, 3.7 million readers opened their USA Today morning papers to find a full-page spread on New York’s Finger Lakes!  Extolling the virtues of the Finger Lakes Region, the article talks about its 11 eleven lakes spread like the fingers on two hands, great waterfronts, great wine and great second home market! 

Sunrise over the vineyards in the Finger Lakes

For those of us who have lived here all our lives, it’s tough not to scream, “I told you so”.  With that said, it’s a tribute to the 11 regional tourism promotion agencies who have continued to  work together tirelessly to promote the Finger Lakes as a premiere year-round destination.

Enjoying great food, wine and friends. What fun!

Area journalist, Katharine Dyson, says, “It’s a place that has a firm grasp on what’s important, like fresh air, farmers markets, little traffic, outdoor concerts, and lake water so clear you can see right to the bottom.”  And, according to many, it’s about the people who live here that make the Finger Lakes so welcoming to visitors.

It's a short hike to the waterfalls in Grimes Glen, Naples.

Great Finger Lakes Finds  mentioned in the article included: regional wineries, Watkins Glen Raceway, Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack, the New York Wine and Culinary Center, more than 1,000 waterfalls, boating, fishing, golf , ski resorts, and parks.  Others to explore include:

Letchworth State Park is known as “The Grand Canyon of the East”
For thoroughbred racing and casino gaming, visit Tioga Downs
Boating, Great Lakes fishing, and the Erie Canal
Cayuga Lake, the longest Finger Lake, is home to the Cayuga Wine Trail
Visit Mark Twain Country!
Ithaca is overflowing with lively culture, unique shopping waterfalls
Syracuse is home to fantastic sports teams like the NCAA basketball Syracuse Orangemen
A multitude of family-friendly museums and attractions in Rochester
NASCAR fans head to Watkins Glen International
Four seasons of family fun on Keuka Lake
Experience New York’s bounty at The New York Wine & Culinary Center

Start planning your next vacation get away!  Less than a day’s drive, New York’s Finger Lakes are here for you.

The Little Lakes of the Finger Lakes

December 8, 2009

The Little Lakes of the Finger Lakes

The Finger Lakes Region of New York State is made up of 11 long slender bodies of water that form a striking resemblance to the fingers of an outstretched hand.  While the larger of these lakes are most notable and probably most popular lakes, for many area visitors, there is a Great Finger Lakes Find in the “Little Finger Lakes” located in western Ontario County~ Honeoye, Canadice and Hemlock Lakes.

Honeoye Lake translated by the Native Americans means “Lying Finger”.  Honeoye Lake is 5 miles long, has a depth of 30 feet and is a prime fishing spot in the Finger Lakes.  Coming into the winter months, it is the most popular lake for ice fishing because the water freezes quickly and maintains its solid surface throughout the winter months to become a natural playground for ice fishing, skating, and even ice boating. 

Cross Country Skiing fun

Many will enjoy the nearby Harriet Hollister Spencer Park state recreation area (be sure to click on this link to see a video of cross country skiing in the park).  You’ll find spectacular views of Honeoye Lake and the Rochester skyline to the north.  Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy miles of trails for hiking and in the winter it is a popular locale for cross-country skiing, snow-shoeing and even dog-sledding. 

Aerial view of the Little Lakes

 

Canadice Lake is peaceful and tranquil.  The lake is 3 miles long with a depth of 91 feet. Perhaps named with a bit of humor, the Native American translation is “Long Lake” and while the lake is quite tiny, it has some of the most natural beauty of all the Finger Lakes.  In fact, only car top boats are allowed on the lake keeping it pristine and therefore a popular spot for canoeing, kayaking, and relaxing.

Hemlock Lake is translated as “Sister Lake to Canadice” and surprising to many supplies drinking water to the city of Rochester. The lake is 8 miles long and has a depth of 96 feet. As the “sister lake” to Canadice its tree-lined undeveloped setting creates quite a contrasting experience to many of the larger, more populated lakes.  Both Hemlock and Canadice are remote and provide peaceful places to relax and enjoy nature.

Little Lakes Inn and Healing Center

At the end of a perfect day of fun in the Little Lakes, you can settle in for a great night’s sleep at The Little Lakes Inn & Healing Center, a completely restored Italianate-style inn, tucked in the cozy countryside along Honeoye Lake and one of the newest bed & breakfasts in the Finger Lakes.  Here you will find all the comforts of home and more.   

Thinking about your next get away?  The Little Lakes of the Finger Lakes is a Great Finger Lakes Find!

Routes 5 & 20–Best of the Best to See and Do

August 7, 2009
Enjoy the fun and see the best!

Enjoy the fun and see the best!

Pack up the family, get in the car and get ready to experience a lot of fun things to see and do along Routes 5 & 20 in New York’s Finger Lakes and more specifically in Ontario County.  We have the Best of the Best for you!  The Finger Lakes Visitors Connection (official tourism bureau of Ontario County) along with four other tourism partners surveyed the locals and found out for you what they recommend is the best of the best to see and do along the Authentic American Road, Routes 5 & 20. 

Alpaca Farms

Alpaca Farms

From A toZ, there’s Alpacas, antiquing, apples, bistros, concerts, drive-ins, eats, fish, a gigglin’ pig, hiking, ice cream, JELL-O, lakes, museums, nature, orchards, pottery, scenery, theme parks, wineries and ZZZZZ.  What’s the “Z” — that’s the great sleep you’ll get in one of our local hotels or B & Bs, after a full day of fun along this historic route. 

Routes 5 & 20 Mini Map

Routes 5 & 20 Mini Map

The locals always know the BEST places to go.  So whether you’re driving, biking, or even hiking you’ll find the top picks along this fun and fascinating trail.  How about the best locally made gift, the best rainy day activity, the best picnic spot or the best scenic spot?  There’s  a  map showing the complete listing of  these and more along this 135 mile road trip–The Best of Routes 5 & 20!  Call today to get your FREE map~877-FUN-IN-NY or 585-394-3915.

Here’s more Great Finger Lakes Finds for upcoming events this month.

August 5-8th  Pageant of Steam in Canandaigua

August 8th – 25th Annual Cheshire Union Antique Show in Cheshire

August 15-16th Riesling Festival Canandaigua Lake

August 15-17th Billsboro Winery Plein Air Festival, Seneca Lake

Battle of the Paddle this Weekend~Finger Lakes

April 22, 2009

Rafters Race--Who will stay afloat? April showers bring May flowers in the Finger Lakes, but even more important April showers bring lots of water for the Annual Wild Water Derby on April 25 & 26.  Bring your canoe, kayak and raft or even build your own for a weekend of family fun and competitions on the Canandaigua Lake Outlet.  The spring waters are flowing off the hills and the “wild water” provides some challenging races for all–from beginners to the experienced–test your skills. 

There are races for all ages and perhaps the most popular is the battle for the “Most Entertaining” Raft award, all are handmade by racing teams and they come in all themes, sizes and shapes. 

The event takes places in Shortsville on the Canandaigua Outlet.  Bring the whole family out for the weekend for one of the first Finger Lakes Festivals of the year. Proceeds from the event benefit area non-profit organizations.  2008 Race Photo Gallery

The Best of Routes 5 and 20

April 7, 2009
What are your local favorites?

What are your local favorites?

Tell us your favorite things to see and do along Routes 5 & 20 in New York’s Finger Lakes.

Join in on the fun as the Routes 5 & 20 tourism promotion team (Genesee, Livingston, Ontario, Seneca, Cayuga counties and the Skaneateles Chamber of Commerce)  reaches out to our locals to tell us the “best of” along Routes 5 & 20. From Darien to Skaneateles, there’s 135 miles of history, fun, architecture, food, art, music and more.  Tell us what you like most.  Take the short survey which enters you to win a $100 gas card.  Inquiring minds want to know!  Take the survey today!  Call 877-FUN-IN-NY for more information.

Battle of the Paddle-Wild Water Derby

March 23, 2009
Rafters Race--Who will stay afloat?

Rafters Race--Who will stay afloat?

April showers bring May flowers in the Finger Lakes, but even more important April showers bring lots of water for the Annual Wild Water Derby on April 25 & 26.  Bring your canoe, kayak and raft or even build your own for a weekend of family fun and competitions on the Canandaigua Lake Outlet.  The spring waters are flowing off the hills and the “wild water” provides some challenging races for all–from beginners to the experienced–test your skills. 

Pick a theme, build your own.

Pick a theme, build your own.

There are races for all ages and perhaps the most popular is the battle for the “Most Entertaining” Raft award, all are handmade by racing teams and they come in all themes, sizes and shapes. 

The event takes places in Shortsville on the Canandaigua Outlet.  Bring the whole family out for the weekend for one of the first Finger Lakes Festivals of the year. Proceeds from the event benefit area non-profit organizations.  2008 Race Photo Gallery