August 1-7, 2019 — During the first week of August we wrapped up our tour of New England by completing our time in Connecticut and making our way west to New York. The theme of the week revolved around Harvest Hosts locations at fruit orchards, working farms and local wineries.
When initially planning our trip to the eastern United States one goal we had in mind was to learn more about small town life of the local residents. Since agriculture is a huge component of the rural areas and an interest of ours, we sought out opportunities to immerse ourselves the culture.
While staying at Harvest Hosts locations this week we had the opportunity to interact with several of the farm owners and learned much of the local history, how the farms, orchards, and wineries evolved and gained a great appreciation of the hard work that has gone into making the farms sustainable in the ever changing agricultural world.
In addition to the great education and history lessons, we feasted on delicious locally sourced produce, salsa, ice cream, wine, etc. and were allotted peaceful, quiet overnight accommodations. Our gratitude goes out to the Harvest Hosts program and participating members for offering these amazing opportunities to RVers.
Follow along below for a pictorial of the wonderful places we stayed, interesting sights we found and activities we did during this first week of August.
We picked a stellar Harvest Hosts site for our last night in Connecticut. March Farm in Bethlehem is a fourth generation farm offering seasonal pick your own fruits, a farm store with produce, meats and cheeses, and a bakery with all types of yummy desserts and pastries. RV parking is next to a field of blueberries overlooking a pond. How great is that!
Walkway Over the Hudson in Poughkeepsie, New York is the world’s longest elevated pedestrian bridge, spanning 1.28 miles over the Hudson River. It originally opened in 1889 as a double track railroad bridge and was utilized until being damaged by fire in 1974. It reopened in 2009 as a walkway and now hosts 600,000 visitors annually. The views of the Hudson River from the bridge are stunning.
Another day and another awesome Harvest Hosts site. Wright’s Farm in Gardiner, New York is a 453 acre fifth generation family-run farm that produces over 100,000 bushels of apples a year. They grow a variety of other fruit and vegetables including cherries, peaches, pumpkins, tomatoes and much more. The farm also offers pies, cookies, apple cider donuts (yum!), jams, jellies, pickles, etc. RV parking is located in a clearing on top of a hill overlooking the orchard with a great view of Minnewaska State Park Preserve in the distance.
The New York State Capitol is part of the Empire State Plaza complex in downtown Albany, New York. The building was completed in 1899 at a staggering cost of $25 million making it the most expensive government building of its time.
The Erastus Corning Tower is also located in Empire Plaza in Albany, New York. At 589 feet and 44 stories in height, it is the tallest skyscraper in the state of New York outside of New York City. The building houses state offices and is named after Erastus Corning II who served as the mayor of Albany for over 40 years from 1941 to 1983. An observation deck on the tower’s 42nd floor offers expansive views of Albany, the Hudson River, and the surrounding area.
Fly Creek Cider Mill & Orchard located just outside Cooperstown, New York in Fly Creek is a great stop when in the area. The historic cider mill from 1856 is still in operation today producing 20,000 gallons of cider annually. The mill also features a marketplace and restaurant that offers a variety of products including apples, wines, hard ciders, bakery products, jams, salsas, fudge, etc. RV parking is available in a huge, level lot allowing up to six Harvest Hosts members to overnight at a time for one or two nights. We highly enjoyed our time at Fly Creek and would love to return during the fall harvest season when the mill is operating.
The Downsville Covered Bridge spans the East Branch of the Delaware River just south of the Pepacton reservoir in Downsville, New York. The 174 foot long bridge is the longest of the 32 remaining covered bridges in New York. It was built in 1874 at a cost of $1,700 and restored in 1998 for $1,000,000 as a tribute to the skills of the past. The bridge is open to passenger car and foot traffic only.
It’s a rare sight to find a round barn preserved as well as this one located near Margaretville, New York. Most round barns in the United States were built in the late 1800’s to early 1900’s and only a few hundred remain standing. This historic barn, known as the “Kelly Barn”, was built in 1893 for use as a dairy barn. Today it is still in use and serves as the home of the seasonal Pakatakan Farmers’ Market.
Poor cat!! Fly Creek, New York is home to several roads named after historical local lore. “Cattown Road” was named after a man that dropped a cat down the chimney of a house to break up a meeting his wife was attending as his dinner was late. Nearby is “Bed Bug Hill Road” which we didn’t care to get near enough to even take a photo of the road sign in case the lore was true that the local bed bugs are “big as squirrels”. Eek!
Rustic Ridge Winery in Burlington Flats is only 9.9 miles from our previous overnight site but after hearing and reading such good reviews about the winery and the fact that they are participant in Harvest Hosts we just had to check it out. What a great stop! The owners of this multi generation farm turned winery are extremely friendly and welcoming. They offer a wide variety of wines as well as gifts, jams, cheeses and more. We enjoyed a nice wine slush on their patio then a quiet night overlooking a field of corn and grape vines.
Delphi Falls is one of over 2,000 waterfalls located in the state of New York and the first of many we hope to see while visiting the state. The 65 foot tall falls are located in Delphi Falls County Park in central New York.
What a great week and fabulous way to start off a new month! Stay tuned for next week as we continue our exploration of New York and mission to find more waterfalls. See you then!
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