I’ve posted a few pictures from this place in past years.
The Sterling Preserve is not far from Oswego, NY, and about an hour’s drive from Rochester (maybe 45 minutes if you skip the leaf-peeping and drive down Route 104 like a bat out of hell, which is generally the custom in these parts).
In the 1970’s, a utility company acquired thousands of acres to build a nuclear power plant – – there were/are such plants near Rochester and Oswego. However the plans for this Sterling plant fell through and there’s now roughly 1400 protected acres of fields, wooded hillocks and marshes . And almost two miles of shoreline along Lake Ontario, all cobble beach.
The woods are nice – mostly maples, oaks, tulip trees and beeches. Along the eastern edge of the preserve, remnants of a stone boundary wall and an old apple orchard are visible, now overtaken by native trees. Near the marshes, there’s more buttonbush shrubs than I’ve seen anywhere else in the region.
WP seems to be doing that thing it does – – some of these photos fuzzy to me, I fiddled with them but no improvement. They seem to look ok when you click on them.
32 thoughts on “Walks Around Upstate New York. Sterling Preserve, Cayuga County, October”
Yeah, that or a nuclear power plant? Chalk one up for the preserve.
Absolutely, I’m with you. The local land trust is currently fund-raising for another parcel along Cayuga Lake, that’s the largest remaining private chunk of land on a Finger Lake – – that was supposed to be a nuclear power plant, too. The state did allow re-opening a power plant on Seneca Lake, converted from coal to gas, but infuriating because it’s just for crypto-mining.
Constant struggle. Go record the gorgeous landscape whenever you can! As if you need me reminding you to do so…ha ha. Enjoy the day RP.
Swans are so striking, aren’t they? We just had 6 land on our cabin lake during their migration. So cool to see them against the yellows of fall.
Yes, I confess to getting blasé about seeing Canada geese, but always a thrill to see swans.
That heronry is something else, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like that. Neat!
I think it’s neat, too, when they come flapping home at sunset with those big wingspans & they croak like (I imagine) a bunch of pterodactyls. You can spot a colony a mile away, because they’re almost always in dead trees – – if they aren’t dead when the herons get there, they’ll die off after the herons have nesting a while. And you don’t want to walk around them in hot weather, the smell will peel paint! But pretty cool birds.
A nice area to zen out in. And you’ve got me wondering if I’ve ever seen Lake Ontario. Probably not.
You’d probably remember it’s about as big as the state of New Jersey! During the winter storms it can have waves 10 feet tall, although on Lake superior they get twice that high sometimes
I am delighted to see this side of Lake Ontario. From where I sit I see the Canadian side. You have some lovely fall color in those maples. We have had amazing colors here this year. I am happy that the nuclear plant was defeated. A victory for nature.
Does autumn seem like it’s particularly colorful this year? Maybe it just seems that way to me because it was a hot muggy summer and I’ve been waiting for fall and cooler weather. Thanks for you comment from across the lake!
Here we are all talking about how vibrant the colors are this year. So it is not just you.
What beautiful photos of a beautiful place. Are cobblestone streets made from the sort of cobble stones that you’ve shown along the lakeshore? Of course the colors are splendid; the third photo down is my favorite. The reflections add so much — although those swans are a great catch.
I did a little poking around re: your blurry photos, and noticed something. The smaller images look fine; it’s the larger ones that are blurred. I checked the properties of the one titled “along the shore of Lake Ontario,” and discovered that the blurry one is 878 x 582 pixels. When I click on the image, it’s perfectly crisp, but the size is 713 x 475. I read that WordPress sometimes stretches images, and causes blurriness as a result. That may be happening for you. (My ignorance about such things is substantial.)
On the other hand, there could be something about your theme that’s mucking things up. Your large header photo looks just fine; the other large ones ought to, as well. If you contact WP about the issue, be sure to mention your theme — Ryu. I had an issue with my theme after they made some back-end changes, and they fixed up the CSS for me.
Thank you, Linda, when I’ve got the Wi-Fi working again, maybe I’ll just try taking those pictures down to 713 x 475 and see if that fixes it. I like this theme but it does have its limitations .
I know they used to have everybody join in sorting the cobblestones by size for the buildings around here (but I’m not sure how they did that, maybe big boards with different size holes in them kind of like the way they sort eggs?) The same day I shot these pictures I took some of a one room cobblestone school house that’s supposed to be the oldest one in the country, I’ll look those up and post them sometime. But the stone-paved streets in the state are usually Belgian block = big buildings chunks of granite or some other really hard rock that have been roughly shaped into rectangles. Easier for people and horses to walk on. I’m not sure if any of those pavers actually ever came from Belgium, the ones in New York City were from the New Jersey side near the Palisades, and that area I guess is all hard volcanic rock. Upstate there’s still brick streets, and the ones that haven’t been paved over will generally rattle your molars loose. And then people would lay down plank roads, usually private for-profit turnpikes where they charged a fee, now it’s hard to imagine lumber being so cheap that you would pave a road with planks.
Thanks for the comments and help!
Now you’ve reminded me of one of my favorite old-time songs: “Down the Old Plank Road.” A favorite version’s the one done by Abby the Spoon Lady and Ben Shirley. If you don’t know Abby, she’s worth a little browse through YouTube.
But this is the best version ever, from Abby’s train hopping days.
Thanks, Linda. Wow, who’d have believed you could get that much fun and theatricality with a pair of spoons! And traveling around like the oldtime hobos. I saw a troupe from Spain a couple years ago, that used castanets, not just for flamenco but folk dances and songs and it was like this lady and her spoons, kind of addictive!
Very colourful! Your leaves seem to be turning just a little earlier than ours over here in Southern Britain. And I’m certainly glad that power plant wasn’t built.
Thanks, Mick, yes, me too. The local land trust is currently trying to preserve another area, on the largest of the Finger Lakes, that was also slated to be a nuclear plant (but also cancelled).
Let’s hope it succeeds.
You captured the beauty of fall in your part of the world very well. Thanks for sharing your impressions, Robert!
Thank you, Peter!
Stunning pics. I love autumnal colours, nature saves its most lavish finery for its annual curtain call.
Thank you, George. That’s a very nice turn of phrase.
Call it a sterling example of a nature preserve. For all we know it’s home to many a starling.
It’s Nice that they pack a variety of habitats within a fairly compact area — Woods open fields, marsh and lake.
Looks like a nice place to walk around on a fall day – but then I’ve always thought that would be a nice area to visit in the season of colors.
Not sure about your blurring problems. I’ve occasionally run into it, but not too much lately. I’ve been resizing to 1200px on the long edge for the most part – might be worth a try.
Ok thanks Dave I’ll try it
Gee, maybe we should propose all kinds of sites for nuclear power plants, then they might be preserved once the power plant is nixed. 😉 A happy ending! And is’ great that herons nest there. 🙂
Yes that’s not a bad idea! I had no idea they’d planned all these nuclear ☢️ plants in the area, years ago, glad it never happened. The state did allow a coal-fired plant to convert to gas and re-open on Seneca Lake, just so they can use the electricity for crypto mining! Hard to believe.
There’s a park near here that was once going to be a nuclear power plant site and that came to nothing, too. Now, the park is jointly managed by the tribe that originally inhabited the land and the state parks department, Nice, right? Crypto mining – I had to ask my partner – didn’t realize cyber currency was eating up resources like that. Ah, the world is crazy!
Same thing with the old naval training base they built for WWII, they tore 99% of it down I guess after Vietnam and now it’s a state park, otherwise all that lake shore would’ve been wall-to-wall cottages for sure.
I read about a former aluminum plant, I think near Massena and the Canadian border, that was wired up a huge amounts of cheap hydroelectric from Canada. The crypto-miners moved in and use so much power, it’s pushed the rates up for all the people living in that area. Yep I think it’s crazy too.