Since we’ve left Colorado, many scenes and events have combined together to create one great experience. One region that deserves a mention for its gorgeous scenery and uniqueness around every corner is the Northeastern US. Including Upstate New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine, these states offer a glimpse into the past and scenery not to be forgotten. Listed in no particular order are 5 cool things you will see in the Northeastern US according to us.
By this, I mean there are lakes, rivers, bogs, ponds, streams, and bays around every curve of the road. Starting with the Great Lakes up north to Lake Champlain dramatically separating the Adirondack Mountains of New York from the Green Mountains of Vermont These lakes and all the enticing bays along the southern coast of Maine are enough to turn any mountain loving freak into a water loving freak. Our bikes have offered great views of these bodies of water, as we have found many cool off-the beaten paths around lakes when just tooling around the towns.
There’s no way to explain the number of trees that are simply everywhere. Unless there’s water or apple orchards (wait, apple orchards consist of trees), there are trees. From maple to oak to walnut to birch to evergreen, to you name it, they envelop you in a warm cozy hug. Some of our most memorable moments with these majestic plants are camping under them with RAIF in various sites throughout the region. They provide ample amounts of shade, so much so that you could sleep the day away under their whispering calm. And even though we were a bit early for full fall foliage, and I will always be loyal to Colorado, the Northeast kicks Colorado’s ass with their glorious trees.
We first noticed this in the quaint town of Stowe, Vermont. Known for its skiing and riding, this cute little Vermont town has the required coffee shops, breweries, and country stores to please any tourist, but what really stood out was the church spire. Towering above the town and, of course, surrounded by trees, it was the first of many church spires in many quaint towns along our route towards Maine. And watching a wedding ceremony complete with bagpipes added to the romanticism of this already postcard-perfect town. In true Stephen King style (King’s home state of Maine is right next door), although beautiful, these spires can be a bit eerie in the moonlight with just a hint of light to play off the shadows. Let your imagination run wild.
Although we only saw one (and one was plenty for Kenny and his fear of heights, but he did it), these 40-80 foot tall structures were a staple in the Adirondacks in the early to mid 20th century before more advanced technology replaced them in searching out forest fires. Many of them, while the observation decks may be closed, are still open to climb the stairs and catch the same views as the firemen did from years ago. We camped at the Sugar Hill Recreation Area in the Western Finger Lakes Region in New York, home to the Sugar Hill Fire Tower, where we hiked a bit and of course, climbed the tower. Click here for a brief history lesson and a listing of fire towers in the Adirondack region.
There’s a lot of history in this region, and this starts with its cemeteries. A few years ago, I wandered an old cemetery in a small village in Fedamore, Ireland, searching for my familial heritage, and I have been intrigued by the stories buried in cemeteries ever since. Found on any small plot of land, around almost every bend in the road, these are not your typical meticulously manicured cemeteries. Many of these plots are a bit overgrown with a weed or two, and they boast headstones crookedly placed, barely legible, and dated back to the 1800’s. (The oldest headstone I have seen so far is 1805.) They offer a glimpse into the past, and I highly recommend wandering through a few of them on your travels here.
Whatever you see, whatever you do, be present in every moment. You are sure to come across other things not seen elsewhere, and you wouldn’t want to miss out on the beauty that our country has to offer. So keep your eyes on the road, not on the phone, and let us know what you would add to this list. Happy Hunting!
If you are interested in more travel stories, click here for Chicago Street Scenes and stay tuned for more to come.