Ithaca Trails

Photo: Jeff Katris

Visit ithacatrails.org for lots of trails in Tompkins County.

With over 232 miles of trails, the GPS-enabled site features a searchable map and directions. 

The following Tompkins County natural areas, found on ithacatrails.org, are also mapped and profiled here on Gofingerlakes.org:

For a comprehensive list of all 232 miles of trails in Tompkins County, visit ithacatrails.org.

Funded by a grant from the Tompkins County Tourism Program, the site allows users to search for trails based on the type of experience they are looking for.  It has the flexibility to allow searches for information such as distance, difficulty, dog walking, scenic views and picnicking.

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The project is a partnership of the Tompkins County Parks and Trails Network.  Partner organizations include the Cornell Botanic Gardens, Town of Ulysses, Tompkins County Tourism Program, Tompkins County Planning Department, Ithaca Tompkins County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Finger Lakes Land Trust, NY State Parks, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, Ithaca College Natural Lands, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, City of Ithaca, Town of Ithaca, Town of Lansing, Town of Dryden, Town of Danby, the Nature Conservancy and user groups like Bike Walk Tompkins, the Cayuga Trails Club, and Finger Lakes Trails Conference.

Happy exploring around beautiful Tompkins County.

Wesley in the West

Photo: Bill Hecht

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Staghorns!

Photo: Bill Hecht

You Can Paddle to the Staghorn Cliffs on the Eastern Shore of Skaneateles Lake

Towering over the eastern shoreline of Skaneateles Lake are the Staghorn Cliffs, named for the ancient coral fossils found along the waterline.  The Finger Lakes Land Trust protects over 1,350 feet of the shoreline at its Cora Kampfe Dickinson Conservation Area, accessible only by boat.

To find other outdoor adventures near the Staghorn Cliffs, see the interactive map.

Do you have great videos or photos of nature in the Finger Lakes?  Want to share with the Land Trust?  If so, please email us at gofingerlakes@fllt.org.

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Farms & Wineries

Photo: Chuck Feil

PART OF OUR REGIONAL CONSERVATION AGENDA

Save Farms, Wineries & Rural Character

Theme 2 from our report on strategies for permanently protecting the priceless lands and waters of the Finger Lakes region

Here we share the second set of strategies from Lakes, Farms, and Forests Forever, our fully illustrated report which you can find on our web site at fllt.org/top10.

The Finger Lakes region is famous for sweeping expanses of farmland and picturesque lake views.  Millions of tourists flock to the region to explore over 50 farmers markets, 3 wine trails, u-pick apple orchards, and emerging beer and cheese trails.  Drawn by the lakes and agricultural tourism opportunities, visitors and residents alike are charmed by the rural character of our region.

Yet our agricultural land and iconic views are increasingly under threat.  Farmers are challenged by the conversion of land for residential and commercial development — a particular concern for farms that rely on significant amounts of leased land.  We are calling for sustained investment to save the farmland and scenic vistas that are most imperiled by development.  By increasing funding from public and private sources — and providing technical assistance to municipal planning boards — we can preserve our farms, vineyards, and rural character forever.

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The conservation strategies in this theme:

Save Threatened Farms & Wineries

Preserve agricultural lands that are most threatened by development through increased funding for New York State’s farmland protection program.  Investment in this program will also spur economic development by aiding agricultural enterprises.

Protect Scenic Vistas & Designated Byways on Cayuga and Seneca Lakes

Inventory publicly accessible vista points across the region and lands bordering the Cayuga Lake and Seneca Lake Scenic Byways.  Secure the highest quality vistas and lands through the acquisition of conservation easements.

Maintain Rural Character Through Stronger Land Use Planning

Strengthen locally-based land use planning by providing increased technical assistance to town planning boards and producing a region-specific guide to best practices for rural land use.

What you can do

If you love the Finger Lakes region, please take a moment to read Lakes, Farms, and Forests Forever.  You can download a digital copy at fllt.org/top10 and request free print copies.  Please share with friends who love our lands and waters, and consider supporting the Finger Lakes Land Trust by becoming a member and getting involved with our events and volunteer opportunities.

Get your copy of our top 10 conservation strategies for the Finger Lakes!

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Lick Brook Snow

Photo: FLLT

A Quiet Winter Morning on Lick Brook at Thayer Preserve

Beautiful Lick Brook, at the southern side of Ithaca, runs through two Finger Lakes Land Trust conservation areas.  Sweedler Preserve contains the dramatic gorge and high falls that many people have discovered off of Route 13 across from Robert Treman State Park.  Thayer Preserve, portrayed in this short winter vignette, connects to Buttermilk Falls State Park.

To find other outdoor adventures near Lick Brook, see the interactive map.

Do you have great videos or photos of nature in the Finger Lakes?  Want to share with the Land Trust?  If so, please email us at gofingerlakes@fllt.org.

Watch more nature videos on the Land Trust web site!

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Steege on Chemung

Photo: Bill Hecht

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Drinking Water!

Photo: FLLT

Where does your drinking water come from?

If you live or work in the City of Ithaca, your drinking water comes from beautiful Six Mile Creek.  The Finger Lakes Land Trust has recently undertaken the Six Mile Creek Protection Project to permanently secure 12,000 feet of shoreline on land that connects to the Roy H. Park Preserve, Hammond Hill State Forest, and other conserved lands.

Where does YOUR drinking water come from?

Did you know that the 11 Finger Lakes provide drinking water for over 1 million people?

Did you know that there are persistent and documented threats to drinking water quality in the Finger Lakes region?

Learn more about drinking water and how we can protect it in our regional conservation agenda, Lakes, Farms, and Forests Forever.

 

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Hollow Snow

Photo: FLLT

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Forest on the FLX

Photo: FLLT

Early Spring Visit to a Forest on the Finger Lakes Trail

Owned by the Finger Lakes Trail Conference and protected by a conservation easement with the Finger Lakes Land Trust, the Bock-Harvey Forest Preserve features a portion of the Finger Lakes Trail, a mix of forest and fields, and proximity to other conserved lands.  Enjoy this short video from an early spring day when snowmelt had the small creek running through beautiful ice formations.

To find other outdoor adventures near the Bock-Harvey Forest Preserve, see the interactive map.

Do you have great videos or photos of nature in the Finger Lakes?  Want to share with the Land Trust?  If so, please email us at gofingerlakes@fllt.org.

Watch more nature videos on the Land Trust web site!

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Skaneateles Sky

Photo: Bill Hecht

See the Hinchcliff Family Preserve from the Air Above Skaneateles Lake

The steep hillsides of southern Skaneateles Lake make for lovely cloud shadows and great views from the Hinchcliff Family Preserve, a Finger Lakes Land Trust conservation area with miles of trails through forest and fields, and historic ruins from farmhouses of yesteryear.

To find other outdoor adventures near the Hinchcliff Family Preserve, see the interactive map.

Do you have great videos or photos of nature in the Finger Lakes?  Want to share with the Land Trust?  If so, please email us at gofingerlakes@fllt.org.

Watch more nature videos on the Land Trust web site!

Go to fllt.org/video Sign Up